Our last day in Shanghai began with a tour of the Shanghai Museum. This fabulous museum opened in 1952 and has over 120,000 artifacts depicting the history of China. The most valuable artifact is the Da Ke Ding, a bronze food vessel from the 10th century B.C. In addition to valuable bronzes of food, water, and wine vessels, we viewed ancient bronze weapons and drums, Buddhist sculpture, Chinese painting, calligraphy, ceramics, and currencies of China and the Silk Road.
We then went to the Bund area, the riverfront district of Shanghai that was the center of politics, business, and culture for hundreds of years in Shanghai. We all enjoyed some free time this afternoon. Some of us wandered the Yu Yuan Garden and bazaar, while others walked down Nanjing Road, a pedestrian shopping area. Others visited Daoist and Buddhist Temples. Many of the teachers shopped for artifacts for their classrooms, posters of Cultural Revolution propaganda, and books about Shanghai and China.
Tomorrow we leave for Suzhou and our last full day in China. We plan to visit the gardens of Suzhou and learn about the making of silk.
Today’s interesting tidbit: The Shanghai Museum has two underground floors and 5 above ground floors. It covers 38,000 square meters and has 11 galleries, 3 exhibition halls, and a multimedia studio.
Photos: 1. Da Ke Ding food vessel at the Shanghai Museum. 2. Group picture outside the Shanghai Museum. 3. Inside view of the Shanghai Museum.