The Confucian temple of Shanghai is not far from Xintiandi, a short walk from the Laoximen metro station (line 10). The temple has ancient origins but was rebuilt in the actual place in 1855. It was severely damaged during the Cultural revolution and rebuilt again in the 1990's.
The complex consists of 3 courtyards.
after entering the complex (and paying the RMB 10 entrance fee), you will find the first courtyard, in there, on Sundays, the famous book market takes place (if you're not a Chinese language lover or reader you might not find anything for you in this market).
At the northern side of the courtyard is the DaChang Hall, in front of it there's a statue of Confucius, inside the hall there's another statue of a sitting Confucius. In the walls inside, there are stones carved with the Analects, the collection of his teachings compiled by his students. This is the courtyard dedicated to public worship oand sacrifice.
The huge Dacheng Bell (1.5 tons) decorated with dragon patterns is said to produce sounds that can last as long as 3 minutes.
This courtyard is full of wish tags that visitors hang in the trees, in many languages, in them, they write their wishes for successful exams, good health, love, etc. There is also a sorvenir and tea shop in the first courtyard.
Facing the Dacheng hall, turn to the right and pass the carved stone arch (Linxing gate) to visit the second couryard. This courtyard is for scholars and studying, in fact there are 2 main buildings here for that purpose, in one there's a library of ancient books (Zunjing Pavilion) and in the other one there's a beautiful study and lectures hall (Ming Lun hall).
The third courtyard is dominated by nature. Its main structures are the three-story Kui Xing Pagoda, the oldest structure in the temple, a small but beautiful garden with a reflecting pond with Ling Bi stones, and a former classroom (now a teapot museum).
Sky & Cloud reflection pond
Almost empty during our visit (although it was a Sunday market day), this place was one of the most beautiful and interesting that we visited in Shanghai, due to the calm and peace inside, but also the beautifully restored structures. There are some guides available but we didn't use their help, it would have been useful to get a deeper understanding of both the temple and Confucius.
Shanghai Confucian Temple (Wen Miao)
Entrance fee: 10 RMB
Open daily: 8:30-16:30
Address in English: Wenmiao Road 215, near Xueqian Road
Address in Chinese: 文庙路215号,近学前路Tel : 63779101 63771815
Fax : 63779282