Shanghai Museum - Shanghai, China


“Pearls don’t lie on the seashore. If you want one, you must dive for it.” - Chinese Proverb

When I stood outside the Shanghai Museum I couldn’t help but thinking the building looked like a flawless seashell hiding a beautiful pearl inside. I have always been fascinated by unconventional architecture and while my visit to Shanghai was packed with exciting sights, this was my favorite. 

But it’s not just the facade that makes it interesting. The inner lobby leads to an hypnotizing atrium. The stairs weave through three floors, taking the shape of a concrete braid rich in culture and art. They also provide the perfect spot to people watch. Locals and tourists continuously pouring through the front entrance and dispersing inside.


The modern building opened to the public in 1996 when the museum relocated to the Huangpu District. It holds a collection of over 120,000 pieces, including ancient coins, writings, ceramics, furniture, gemstones and sculptures. Some of which are as old as 5,000 years!

While the architect, Xing Tonghe, was inspired by an ancient cooking vessel called a Ding to design the unique shape of the building, the structure (like a seashell) holds an incredible treasures inside.


9am - 5pm Daily

201 Renmin Avenue, Shanghai, China 200003