Just east of Zhujiajian lies Baisha Island. The island is home to a small town that has the look and feel of a typical west coast town in South Africa. At first glance, it almost seems as though it has been stolen from somewhere between Paternoster and Port Nolloth and dropped just off the coast of mainland China. The strong smell of ocean and fish awakens nostalgic visions of “home” and causes the homesick South African mind to wander. This is, of course, until you’re greeted by one of the islanders and instead of Afrikaans, you’re overwhelmed by a wave of Chinese and washed back to China.
The island caters to recreational fishermen and the theme is apparent throughout. As soon as you set foot on land, you’re greeted by a huge poster of two fishermen fishing on the rocks. There are numerous fishing spots scattered around the island. Maps of the island, that indicate the different species of fish that can be caught at each spot, are also in abundance. It looks to be a fisherman’s paradise and according to the local tourist brochure, it is the first of its kind in China.
A footpath encircles the island and it makes for a fabulous walkabout. The trail is paved and marked with distance markers at regular intervals. The path is the ideal way to explore the island and take in all the sights it has to offer.
The town has a couple of seafood restaurants, that serve decent food, where you can get a bite to eat. As far as snacks are concerned, however, you might want to bring your own. There is a small shop that sells sweets and drinks, but the selection is quite limited.
We spent most of the day exploring Baisha Island, taking photos and just strolling along the path. The island is quite small, but it boasts spectacular views and has enough space to provide the soul with some respite from the city’s claustrophobic streets.
All in all, the island looks like an amazing weekend-getaway spot for the free-spirited who are entangled by city life in Shanghai. It’s an excellent place to go and relax. However, more than two days on the island could potentially drive you crazy, unless you’re there for the fishing.
How to get to Baisha Island
The only way to reach the tiny island is by boat. The ferry departs from a dock near Black Pebble beach and costs 20 RMB per person. Here is the dock’s location. The best way to get to the dock is by taking a taxi or a Didi. Just show your driver the location on your maps and he should be able to find his way.
If memory serves, the first ferry departs at 9 a.m. and makes its last round back at 4 p.m. The journey to Baisha Island takes about 20-30 minutes.
Back to Zhujiajian.