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The road less travelled: footprints of the past still visible in cultural hotbed
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Shanghai Film Studio

Shanghai Film Studio opened its door in 2001 to serve as the biggest indoor studio in Asia. There are four movie studios and two TV studios. The whole studio is like a mini-version of Shanghai in the 1930s, replete with old buildings featuring stone-arched gates, wood-carved furniture, wax works of departed movie stars, Chinese traditional dress, railroad cars, old streets and classic movie scenes. Real movie stars and cameras can also be encountered if your timing is right.

Sijing Old Town

Created over 1,000 years ago, Sijing used to be a busy town known as the home of rich businessmen and famous scholars. The Sijing of today has successfully preserved a large number of its ancient buildings and architectural styles from the Ming and Qing dynasties, but has also managed to develop into an economic, cultural and transportation hub in the northeast area of Songjiang district. In recent years the municipal government has begun working hard to renovate tourism spots and old residences of famous celebrities to commemorate the town's prosperous past. Nearby Anfang Pagoda also attracts big crowds at sunset when it affords them a great view of the whole town. Sijing Food Street is another place worth visiting. Street-side snacks like Aliu tangyuan (glutinous rice dumpling in soup), Sijing xiaolong (steamed buns) and Gongli zongzi (glutinous rice wrapped in a pyramid shape using bamboo leaves) give guests an unforgettable taste of the local cuisine.

(China Daily September 15, 2009)

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