A walk in the country

Lu Feiran
Pujiang Country Park in southwest Shanghai's Minhang District has opened its first phase, offering a wealth of delights in nature.
Lu Feiran
A walk in the country
Wang Rongjiang / SHINE

After one and a half years of construction, the Pujiang Country Park in Minhang District finally opened the curtain on its first phase.

Covering nearly 6 square kilometers, the park provides one of the closest green getaways to downtown Shanghai — only 20 kilometers from People’s Square.

The first phase of the park is divided into five parts, covering different areas such as farming, entertainment, physical exercise and ecology.

“Forests and waters are the two main themes of the park,” says Yang Yongjian, president of the Minhang District Real Estate Co Ltd, developer of the park. “Besides, we kept the villages and ancient towns at the western and southern sides, which makes the park more rustic and natural.”

A highlight will be its autumn view, although visitors will have to wait a few more months to enjoy the golden blanket of fallen leaves along with the blooming autumn flowers such as confederate roses and rose mallows.

For now, here’s what the park has to offer.

A walk in the country
Wang Rongjiang / SHINE

The Garden of Miracles

It is a must-visit. Near Gate 1 on the Puxing Highway, the garden features a large castle built from flower frames.

Climb onto the top of the castle, and you’ll see a flower blanket that covers more than 16,000 square meters. Flowers of different colors compose various patterns, giving visitors great visual impact.

An elevated pathway, the Sky Bridge, allows visitors to watch the flower blanket from different angles and also leads them to another key feature of the area, the Church of Flora.

Adopting the name from the Roman Goddess of Flowers, the church is more of a ceremony hall than a real chapel. People can hold weddings here and the dreamy view of the area is expected to give new couples memories for life.

A walk in the country
Wang Rongjiang / SHINE

The Forest of Vitality

Entering through Gate 2, visitors will reach the Forest of Vitality. Among the lush trees, six hidden loudspeakers give out the joyful twitter of birds and the chirping of cicadas.

Decorated with wild flowers, the forest is expected to attract visitors to slow down and linger.

The pathway in the forest leads to an outdoor venue surrounded by an artificial river. There is no better thing than attending a music festival on a vast lawn.

When there is no show, people can spend some time at the forest playground, where facilities for basketball, rock climbing and skateboards are all available.

A walk in the country
Wang Rongjiang / SHINE

The Riverside Trail

Next to the Huangpu River, the views are amazing. The trail is decorated by pink, yellow and orange flowers and can be accessed from the Duhang Ferry Station, or through any crossroads of the Fengshou Village at the western side of the park.

At one point of the trail, a waterfront platform named Sunset Bay is the best place to watch the sunset on the Huangpu River. The platform is also an ideal place for watching the night view of the Minpu Bridge.

The Woodsy Recreation Area

Walking along Tinghe Road, visitors will reach the villages in the country park. 

The scenery here doesn’t feel like a tourist spot at all. Villages here are indeed an integral a part of the park. Take the Fengshou Village as an example. Twenty-four families are living here. Their daily lives are not affected by either the construction or the operation of the park: They still live in their original houses and work their farmlands.

“The only difference was that we repainted our houses to match the rest of the park,” says a villager surnamed Liu. “And the surrounding environment is better than before.”

The “environment” Liu refers to is a gingko forest on one side of the village. People are eagerly waiting for autumn, when the leaves of these trees will all turn gold.

The Willow and Egret Farming Area

The name of the area was adopted from an ancient Chinese poem: 

"Two golden orioles sing amid the willows green;
A flock of white egrets flies into the blue sky."

It is a description of typical countryside scenery. In this area, visitors are able to pick fruits, plant corn, watch egrets and other wildlife and camp by the river.

In autumn, it will be another wonder of views. Gingko and redwood trees are planted along the pathway and when the winds blow; golden and scarlet leaves will cover the entire road.

A sakura pathway is under construction in the area, and in the near future it will also become a popular site in the spring.

A walk in the country
Wang Rongjiang / SHINE

If you go:

Opening hours: 6am-6pm; 6am-9pm in summertime

Address: Puxing Highway (north of the Dazhi River)

Admission: Free

How to get there: Take Metro Line 8 to the Shendu Highway Station and then walk another 10 minutes. Bus No. 175 and Pujiang No. 5 Bus also reach the park. The third phase of Metro Line 8 will provide easy access to the park as well.

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