It's been three years in the making, but Shanghai's riverfront walkway along the Bund reopened to pedestrians yesterday ; now longer, wider and more impressive than ever before. Chinatravel.net went down there today, hoping that yesterday's crowds might have died down. No such luck -- the place remains packed, as the photos below testify.
Not all of the work is yet complete, with a long-ish section in front of Three on the Bund still off limits while they build an open-air theatre space for an Expo-related "International Music Extravaganza," and few of the on-site stores open for business. But all the work to date has paid off; the two kilometer long walkway is an undeniably impressive achievement.
It's now possible (ignoring for now the area around the theater) to walk all the way from the Waibaidu Bridge at the mouth of Suzhou Creek (right by the newly-opened Peninsula Hotel) south to the new Shiliupu ferry terminal (so new, the boats are still docking at the old terminal right next door). The walkway finally comes to a halt some fifteen minutes walk north of the Cool Docks (see our photos of the derelict beauty of that area here).
Once (if!) the crowds die down it'll be a genuinely pleasant place for a stroll (perhaps even a jog), with plenty of places to sit and take in the view, some rather charming flower gardens, and prime viewing platforms facing onto the Bund buildings old and new (in addition to the new Peninsula Hotel and the space-age Shiliupu wharf, the old British consulate by the Creek has been given a polish, the Peace Hotel looks ready to reopen soon, and there's a new Bund Information Office building halfway down). Add to that killer views of the towers on the other side, and some kill-yourself-laughing Chinglish (sorry, but of all the places you'd think they'd get it right...) and you've got yourself a sure-fire crowdpleaser. See for yourself with our photo gallery below...