There are many ancient towns in Shanghai suburbs. However, some of them are full of commercial atmosphere and the natural landscape has been changed into place of cultural interest after years of demolishing and rebuilding, making the ancient towns no longer “ancient”. However, Luodian Town still remains elegant with classic simplicity, showing the unique lifestyle of original Luodian people and of a typical region of rivers and lakes of over 600 years.
Walking along the narrow and quiet Tingqian Street on a winter day, one would see the antique 2-storey or 3-storey well-spaced buildings of post and panel structure and with black bricks, small tiles and flower-format moving doors and windows. There are also many old and famous shops, such as galvanized iron shop, little farm tools shop, hand knitting shop, cloth shop, medical plaster shop, stamp-carving shop, clock shop and wine shop, all showing the charm of an original and prosperous ancient town.
Stone arch bridge is the special historical site typical of a Jiangnan watertown. There are 3 stone arch bridges in Luodian -- the Datong Bridge, the Fengde Bridge and the Lailong Bridge, which have witnessed the past and present of Luodian. The Datong Bridge (also known as Dashi Bridge) of 18m long, 7m high and 4.5m wide at Tingqian Street was built in 1472 (the 8th year under the reign of Emperor Chenghua in the Ming Dynasty) and rebuilt in 1731 (the 8th year under the reign of Emperor Yongzheng of the Qing Dynasty). It stretches from south to north and is at the south and interchange of the Laoxianqi River. It is a semi-circle stone arch bridge with more than 500 years. Previously, there was a pavilion, making it a rare pavilion bridge in Shanghai, and it’s also the most ancient bridge in Baoshan. Looking afar from the bridge, one would see the clear river with ripples and the residents, pavilions and galleries on both sides, forming the poetic Jiangnan scenery of “a small bridge over the flowing stream”.
Walking on the clean and quiet streets, one would feel like being in the ancient times. The toilets there are decorated with green plants to create a beautiful environment and change the air and win the title of the “2019 Shanghai Most Beautiful Toilet”.
Luodian Town at the southern bank of the Yangtze Estuary, north of Shanghai and northwest of Baoshan District, was originally an alluvial land near the ocean. It is adjacent to Gucun Town in the south, Baogang and Yuepu in the east, Jiading District in the west, and Baoshan Industry Park and Luojing Town in the north, covering an area of 44.19 km2 and enjoying advanced water and land transport and prosperous economy. Luodian Ancient Town dates back to the time of Emperor Zhizheng of the Yuan Dynasty and has a history of over 600 years. As early as the time of Emperor Wanli of the Ming Dynasty, Luodian was a major business town with abundant natural resources and radiating business; and the cotton and cotton cloth trade flourished in the time of Emperor Kangxi of the Qing Dynasty, and it thus got the name of “Golden Luodian”.
Luodian Town has many historical sites, profound cultural deposits and the landscape of a Jiangnan watertown with well preserved courtyards. Walking along the narrow street where there are ancient residential houses and roaring business, one would feel like being in a gallery with both historical remaining and modern features, appreciating its distance and fashion.