The Huangpu, itself a large river, is but a tributary of the mighty Yangtze. It joins the main river very close to its mouth on the China Sea. We really wanted to take the three hour cruise from the Bund to look at the ocean.
According to all our researches on line, the cruise runs daily, at 0900 and 1430. There were a few hesitations about the 0900, so we thought we’d try for it, and go in the afternoon if we missed it. An early start was signalled.
Gentle readers: there is no cruise along the river in daylight. Why, we don’t know. And the evening one (which we hope to do) is only about 45 minutes, so does not glimpse the main river or the sea. How do we now know this to be true?
We walked to the first pier, but found it is only for the Pudong ferry. The Shiliupu jetty, home of the river cruises, is further down. On we marched as the day grew hotter. And hotter. It was only 0830 and we were dripping with sweat. We marched the whole length of the Bund from Jaojiang Lu to the far southern end – which must be about a mile. Plus some detours to examine the prospects at street level. We could see the boats! We could see the jetties, and the signs for ticket halls, and the tempting river begging to be explored. At the end of the Bund we gave in. It was just on 0900, the boats weren’t going anywhere, and we were in a sorry state.
Luckily the end of the Bund is home to the very wonderful hotel Indigo
. Two pathetic women of a certain age, flushed and sweaty, fell into their arms. They whisked up to their lovely coffee bar on the sixth floor and gave us drinks of our choice, cookies, sage advice and copies of local magazines. Their toilets are stupendous (and probably the only minimalist spaces we will see in Shanghai.) And the views are wonderful. It was early enough in the morning and quite breezy, so the smog had not set in. The picture is the view west and is entirely typical in being dominated by a building site, although this one is particularly big! Our hotel is just underneath the wedding cake circular roof on the extreme right of the photo.
The bill was not even exorbitant. All in all, a big hooray for the Indigo, who sent us on our way chilled in every sense.