The Night View of Laowaitan./老外灘夜景。 [Photo by Shen Guofeng]沈國峰攝
By Gou Wen
Laowaitan has been a busy port since the Tang and Song dynasties a thousand years ago. It officially received its name and opened up to global trade in 1884. The Laowaitan area covers 48,000m^2, with 80,000m^2 of built spaces. There are many protected cultural and historical sites here.
Laowaitan was once one of Ningbo's passenger ports. At its peak, over 10,000 passengers embarked and disembarked daily.
Now, it is a popular tourist destination. Here you will find a Catholic Church, built in 1872, and the former building of the Ningbo Post Office, built in 1927.
Laowaitan is also a bustling nightlife district with many bars and shops. More than 140 businesses and companies are based here. Recently, Laowaitan was named as one of China's first "national nighttime leisure consumption districts".