The most extensive industrial city in China, Shanghai nestles by the river mouth of the Yangtze. It is a captivating, frantic city in which the finest of conventional and modern China blend. The iconic skyline of Pudong, the world-class cuisine and shopping, the traditional buildings and the culture are among the best in the country.
For shopping and sightseeing, the areas along the Huangpu River and around People’s square have much to offer. Huaihai Road is where the finest fashion shops are located and Nanjing Road is known for its cafes, antique shops, and the charming French Concession area. Take a stroll along The Bund to marvel at the historical structures and for amazing views from Pudong and across the river.
For wearied tourists desiring a break from the frenetic pace of the metropolis (and the endless soundtrack of vehicles honking), Yuyan’s verdant landscape offers a welcome breather. This is an exquisite and peaceful area, with stone bridges over waterways, bamboos, ponds with Koi and rock playgrounds all coalescing to create a peaceful, relaxing atmosphere.
Among the archaic buildings in Shanghai are the Jade Buddha Temple, the Longhua Pagoda, and the Tomb of Lu Xun. Zhujajiao Water Town, Chongming Island, and Qibao Ancient Town are also worth seeing. Cultural draws include the performances in the Shanghai Grand Theatre, and Shanghai Museum both of which are spectacular trendy buildings.
But take a moment to stride away from, the typical tourist haunts, the chic shops and the magnetic glare of the neon lights, stroll down the surfeit of side lanes and you will uncover a world away from the polished, new China this country wants the planet to see. Here you will acquire the best insights into Chinese traditions and culture as residents go about their everyday lives apparently oblivious to your company amongst them.
When to visit
Spring, summer or autumn, though air pollution can be a problem in summer.
- The residences of Chiang Kai-sheik and Sun Yat-Sen
- The world-famous Shanghai Museum
You Should know
The number of road fatalities in Shanghai is incredibly high and the driving is often hair-raising. Take care when crossing roads and look out for the motorbikes mounting the pavements as they frequently do.