Tian Zi Fang(田子坊) @ Shanghai

Shanghai or some call it Pearl of the East. We have seen this city and its stunning skyline on numerous magazines and television.  A booming population of 22 million, just like Dhaka but with better traffic 🙂

Ah well, there is no need for any introduction, everyone knows Shanghai. A couple of mates work and live here. If I were to ask them where are the best places to go, the list goes on forever and everyone’s list will be different. There are just so many new places coming up every month that it’s endless.

Had only 2 hours break….gotta make the best I can !!

I have always liked Tian Zi Fang since I last visited it 3-4 years ago, although a little touristy nowadays but still not overdone. It’s a little area situated in what used to be the French Concession. Many small alleyways intertwined with each other like the Hutongs in Beijing. Someone decided that it’s has the potential to be a hip place by opening up art/photo galleries and it started like this from there……..Today, most of the residents have moved on, the place is teeming with arty farty shops basking art pieces to old cameras to Japanese themed clothings to souvenirs.

I bet you never have underwear of strangers so close to your face.

Not too big a place, so don’t worry, its easy to navigate.

Little cafes like this peppered the area. Rather artisanal and bohemian. Come evening, it’s a cool place to chill out with a few beers or have a walk with loved ones.

The bag says “Oba Mao, Chairman Says I am Handsome”

These little beans…..if you plant them, their leaves will have an imprint or words exactly as per what it is on the beans now. Gees, i dunno what i am talking about.

Take your time to walk the lanes, but if you are forgetful like me, it can be difficult to hunt down the same shop again. So if you like something, buy it straightaway.

A few street artists works here and the art galleries still exist, although you will be paying tourist’s prices now. Remember to bargain, start with 70% down from the prices they quote you, walk away if the prices are not met.

They still get their mails. 🙂

And I guess they must be sick of having their photo taken, some are maybe so used to it that they cannot be bothered. And if you see a “No Photo” sign, it really means no photo, else you may get a toungue lashing from the residents……privacy respected.

No doubt that it has changed a lot this since the last time I was here but I urge you to visit while the residents are still around. They give the place a unique character that cannot be found anywhere else. The smells of them cooking their lunch, walking the lanes with their grandchildren or brushing their teeth while you are 10 feet away, sitting al fresco sipping your freshly brewed French roasted coffee…..

Its something special isn’t it ?

And nope, you cannot access to wordpress when in China.


  1. but you have a wonderful story to tell with your photos when you came back from China… and yes, it seems special, i can sense the fondness from a guy who’s seen and taken too many pics of corners and nooks, huh?! ^^ but you never seem to tire of capturing their moments, ‘no?

    btw, did you eat well while you were there? the pics of the soup and noodles seem to be missing, ahaha.
    i like the photo of the sinks… regards, achiever 🙂

    1. ahahhaha…true cyniconhold, i was having a wonderful time with my camera. I ate very very well…..but i couldn’t take pictures as they are all business dinners. It will look weird. imagine me taking pictures in a roomful of serious-faced guys with suits !!

      1. ah, yes, i can imagine those guys when they’re serious, ahaha. in real life, as in the movies. 😉 you took strolls, lots of pics and ate tasty noodles (dang!). hey, you had a great time… cheers, as always 🙂

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