Oriental Pearl TV Tower

Member Rating 3 out of 5 by Kathryn on September 19, 2000

I am always a little bemused when confronted with a tourist attraction that is renowned for its height. ‘Tallest in the (insert location here)’ buildings don’t seem so common in Australia (perhaps the height of our buildings is just too embarrassing to advertise). Yet certainly size does matter - the Big Pineapple and the Big Merino (just to name a couple!) are proof of that. But I digress - and the Oriental Pearl TV Tower does have credentials to be proud of. The tower was completed in 1994 and stands opposite the Bund in the Pudong New Area. The tower is 468 m tall and, at the time of its completion, was tallest TV tower in Asia (and third tallest in the world!). Unfortunately for Tower Buffs, it is no longer the tallest building in Shanghai. A new building of some 81 floors now stands nearby. But whatever its size, it does have a pretty good view of the city.

We caught a taxi to Pudong, travelling though a tunnel that crosses under the river. Extensions to the subway system were just being completed while we were there and so you may now be able to take that instead. We arrived in the early evening. There were only a few people around but it was obvious that the Tower must attract very long lines quite often! As we approached the building, we entered into a maze of barriers obviously designed to direct hordes of people into a neat queue.

We decided to get tickets just to the main sightseeing deck (Y40). You could go up to a higher deck, but it cost Y100. The sun was just beginning to set as we reached the viewing platform. Like most viewing platforms, the deck provided a full 360 degree view of the surrounding area, which was bathed in a rather spooky purple light (thanks to the lights on the tower itself). A rail around the platform pointed out the direction and distance to other cities in China. The view of the city, especially of the river and Bund, was spectacular. It inspired me to try some long exposure photography with my camera, which was a bit of a tragic mistake (can anyone say ‘tripod’??).

But despite the view, possibly the best part of the whole experience was the toilets. At that stage they were THE nicest toilets I had seen in China. They almost made me cry.

Oriental Pearl TV Tower
1 Shi Ji Boulevard, Pu Dong District
Shanghai, China, 200120
+86 (21) 5879 1888


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