To get to the heart of a city, you need a good pair of shoes. Charles Baudelaire used the term `flâneur’ to describe someone who walks through the city to experience it. And nothing beats being shown around by those who have been walking the streets themselves for a while. Let the Shanghai Flaneurs take you on a walk-and-talk experience! As a community service SHANGHAI FLANEUR offers open walkshops on weekends for individuals, a novel format to explore urban space, involving short lectures, walks to key locations and discussions with our experts.
To join a open walkshop or register for the newsletter, kindly send a message to Ms. Chen, Yanling at ylc(at) or call us @ +86 1381 892 2040 for short notice inquires.
Should you prefer privacy or have a special occasion to celebrate, we also offer all topics as private walks to individuals and families. To arrange a private walk please contact Ms. Chu, Yan at ychu(at)


In the area north of the former Great Western Road (now Yan’an Lu), out towards the former Columbia Country Club, lie what were once some of the most prized suburban addresses of Shanghai’s old ‘West End’. Wuyi Lu and Lixi Lu may be little visited today, but their grand houses were home to some of Shanghai’s most influential residents in the 1930s and ’40s.
This walk, led by writer Duncan Hewitt, will explore this forgotten suburbia, still surviving in the midst of the city. It will pass the mansion of the Kwok family (founders of the Wing On department store), the former homes of British taipans, and the traditional Chinese-style house built by late-Qing dynasty statesman Li Hongzhang for his mother, before heading towards Yuyuan Lu and buildings associated with the Japanese-installed puppet government and leading Chinese intellectuals, including writer Eileen Chang.

Expert: Duncan Hewitt is a British writer and journalist who has lived in Shanghai since 2000, and has researched many of the city’s old neighbourhoods. He is the author of Getting Rich First – Life in a Changing China, (Vintage, 2008) which focuses on social change in China and Shanghai over the past three decades. He also contributed a chapter on Hongqiao Road to the walking guide Still More Shanghai Walks, edited by Tess Johnston.

Date & Duration: Saturday, July 1., 10:00-13:00 Meeting point: corner of Yanan Xi Lu and Wuyi Lu (nearest metro Jiangsu Lu, line 2 and 11, exit 4)

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