China Travel Guide

Areas of Natural Beauty

  • She Shan
  • Huangpu River
  • Exterior of the grand She Shan church, Our Lady of China
    Exterior of the grand She Shan
    church, Our Lady of China

    She Shan

    • 22 miles (35 km) SW of Shanghai
    • from Wenhua Guangchang bus stop or Xi Qu bus station in Shanghai

    She Hill or She Shan is a mere 328-ft (100-m) high, and is surmounted by a grand, red-brick Catholic church, Our Lady of China. In the 1850s, European missionaries built a small chapel here. Later, a bishop took refuge in the area and vowed to build a church. The basilica was built between 1925–35. Services, often in Latin, take place on Christian holidays and particularly in May, when pilgrims stream here in their hundreds. The impressive cathedral is worth a closer look. The route to the top represents the Via Dolorosa (The Way of Suffering), the road that Christ took to his crucifixion. It is a pleasant walk past bamboo groves, but there is a cable car that goes to the summit. The hill also has an ancient observatory that houses an ingenious earthquake-monitoring device of a jar with dragon heads around the outside and a pendulum inside. Each dragon has a steel ball in its mouth. When an earthquake occurred, the pendulum would swing, knock a dragon, causing its mouth to open and a ball to drop out and thereby point out the quake's direction.

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