Being in Shanghai I thought i'd be able to find some amazing food anywhere. I've been to hole in the wall restaurants which I wish I never went because they made me sick. I didn't want to read other blogs about food, instead I wanted to find my own gems. After having so many bad meals I decided to look up a good restaurant on Trip Advisor. I found a restaurant called Tock's, it was a deli and it was owned by a guy from Montreal Canada which enticed me ever more. When I got there it was really busy but there were some seats. As I was looking through the menu the owner came by and asked if I had ever been, which I hadn't so he gave me the rundown of the restaurant and how the meat was seasoned. He then asked if I sampled the meat, which I hadn't so he brought me some smoked meat and some pastrami. After trying the meat I settled on the Reuben sandwich which came with coleslaw and fries. For your meat you get to choose if you want lean, medium or fatty meat. I chose medium because I wanted a bit of marbling for flavour. This sandwich is the BEST I have EVER had! OH MY GOD! The meat had so much flavour and was so tender. I could eat there everyday if it wasn't so expensive.
The Reuben sandwich has two layers of smoked meat, melted swiss cheese and sauerkraut drizzled with A Thousand Island dressing. The meal was 78 RMB ($15 cad) so it was as cheap as my other meals but it was well worth the price since I still think about it now.
Yu Yuan Old Street
After eating that delicious sandwich I headed to Yu Yuan Old street. I walked all the way there, it was about a 25 minute walk (1.4km). Yu Yuan Old Street is an area in the ancient walled city of Shanghai. The walls have been demolished but some of the gates still remain. Now this area is very popular with tourists and is filled with shops, restaurants and food places. This area is very picturesque, with Ming and Qing style architecture.
Make sure to give yourself lots of time to explore, shop and eat. There are always tons of people and motorbikes every where so there may be line ups at certain places.
I find it so strange, there are so many motorbikes here but I don't see this many on the roads when I walk around.
Yu Yuan Garden
If you make your way to the middle of the Old Street you will eventually get into Yu Yuan Bazaar. In the Bazaar is the garden. Admission is 60 RMB ($12) to get in. Yu Garden was built in 1559 in the Ming Dynasty. This garden is extremely unique as it was the largest garden in Shanghai. It is filled with old trees and beautiful flowers. It accentuates peace and tranquility.
Below is one of the halls and the end of the dragon wall end pieces.
Walking through one of the pathways you'll see this really cool entrance/exit that looks like a vase. There are also bamboo plants on the other side.
There are a lot of unique looking pavilions and rocks.
I love when the trees are obstructing the building and they do not cut it. This gives the garden so much character. Just make sure you don't walk into it.
So many beautiful areas. I tried to go to places where I saw the least amount of people. I wish I had come earlier and spent more time in here.
In this pond the fish are actually Goldfish not Koi. Make sure to take the crooked bridge and check out the pavilion.
If you take photos from the side of the Nine Lion Waterside pavilion you get the best pictures with the trees, flowers and bridge.
Always look up when you are at each pavilion. The roof always has so much character!
I would recommend spending at least a good 90 mins walking about the garden. The garden is 5 acres, so its pretty extensive. You don't want to miss some places because there is lots to see! I missed some of the west side of the garden, I didn't even realize until I left the garden. I've been to many Chinese, Korean and Japanese Gardens and this is by far my favourite one!
Yu Yuan Bazaar
The garden closes at 4:30 pm, so after I was finished I walked to the Bazaar. The Baazar is actually the same thing as the Old Street but I just classified it differently so you know exactly what i'm talking about. When I talk about the Bazaar i'm talking about the area with the small alleys surrounding the Yu Garden. In the center of the Bazaar right outside Yu Garden is the Huxingting Teahouse. This area is extremely busy and filled with tourists.
Around the tea house there is a pond with sculptures and fish which is really beautiful.
The zigzag bridge is the best part. This is where everyone wants to stand and take pictures, so it's very crowded. The best thing to do is to take pictures from the side like this one.
The Bazaar is just filled with shops and restaurants. People will come up to you and say "What do you want" then they'll show you jewelry or other things. I just walked away, if you engage in conversation they will bother you tot buy buy buy their fake jewelry. They have tea stores that sell amazing smelling teas but aren't very cheap. Try to compare prices before you buy anything.
It's like a maze here, so many alley ways to explore! Yu Yuan needs at least 3 hours to explore. It's fun to just wander around but you may also want to get yourself a map so you know where everything is. There are also temples and markets to explore.
-- Take subway Line 10 and alight at Yu Yuan Station. Leave through Exit 1 and follow the signs.
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I’m Hilda, the writer behind Herxtravels. Here you can find travel guides, reviews and tips. Find out more about me here.