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  • Andy Honey

How to Make the Most of Your Trip to Shanghai: Top Must-See Attractions and Activities

Huangpu River in Pudong, Shanghai

Shanghai, a city that seamlessly blends ancient traditions with modern innovation, stands as a testament to China's rapid development. Nestled on the banks of the Huangpu River, Shanghai is a captivating destination that offers a unique blend of history, culture, and futuristic skylines. In this in-depth blog post, we will guide you through the must-see attractions, culinary delights, and cultural experiences that make a visit to Shanghai an unforgettable journey.

1. The Old and the New: A Glimpse into Shanghai's History:

- The Bund: Begin your exploration by strolling along The Bund, a historic waterfront lined with colonial-era buildings on one side and the futuristic skyline of Pudong on the other. The contrast between the old and new architecture is a captivating visual spectacle.

The Bund is not only a feast for the eyes during the day but also comes alive at night when the buildings are illuminated, creating a dazzling display of lights reflecting on the waters of the Huangpu River. Consider taking a river cruise for a different perspective, allowing you to marvel at Shanghai's skyline from the tranquil waters.

- Yu Garden: Step back in time at Yu Garden, a classical Chinese garden that dates back to the Ming Dynasty. Wander through intricate pavilions, stone bridges, and lush greenery, immersing yourself in traditional Chinese aesthetics.

Be sure to explore the nearby Chenghuang Miao (City God Temple) and the bustling streets of the Old City, where you can sample local snacks, buy traditional crafts, and experience the vibrant atmosphere of traditional Shanghai.

2. Modern Marvels: Pudong's Skyline:

- Shanghai Tower, Jin Mao Tower, and Shanghai World Financial Center: Head to Pudong to witness the iconic trio of skyscrapers that dominate the skyline. Ascend one of these giants for a panoramic view of the city. The Shanghai Tower, standing at 632 meters, is the world's second-tallest building, offering a truly breathtaking experience.

Consider visiting the observation deck during sunset to witness the city transforming from day to night, with lights twinkling across the urban landscape. Pudong's skyline is a testament to China's rapid urbanization and economic prowess, showcasing the country's ambition and innovation.

- Oriental Pearl Tower: While exploring Pudong, don't miss the iconic Oriental Pearl Tower. This futuristic structure with its distinctive spheres offers not only panoramic views but also a unique glass-floored observation deck for an adrenaline-pumping experience.

3. Culinary Delights: Exploring Shanghai's Food Scene:

- Xiao Long Bao at Din Tai Fung: No visit to Shanghai is complete without indulging in the city's famous soup dumplings, Xiao Long Bao. Din Tai Fung, with its Michelin-starred reputation, is the perfect place to savor these delicate dumplings.

Dive into the art of making Xiao Long Bao by taking a cooking class or exploring local markets to see the variety of ingredients that contribute to this delectable dish. Shanghai is a haven for food enthusiasts, and besides Din Tai Fung, you can explore local street markets and hidden gems for an authentic culinary experience.

- Nanjing Road Street Food: Take a stroll down Nanjing Road, Shanghai's premier shopping street, and treat your taste buds to a variety of local street food. From stinky tofu to scallion pancakes, the options are diverse and delicious.

For a deeper dive into Shanghai's culinary scene, consider joining a food tour that takes you through the city's neighborhoods, introducing you to the diverse flavors and regional specialties that make Shanghai a gastronomic delight.

Xiao Long Bao Soup Dumplings

4. Art and Culture: Museums and Galleries:

- Shanghai Museum: Delve into China's rich cultural heritage at the Shanghai Museum, home to a vast collection of ancient Chinese art and artifacts. The museum's distinctive architecture and comprehensive exhibits make it a must-visit for history enthusiasts.

Plan your visit to the museum during one of its special exhibitions or events to enhance your understanding of Chinese history and art. The museum often hosts cultural performances and workshops, providing visitors with a hands-on experience of traditional Chinese crafts.

- M50 Art District: For contemporary art lovers, M50 Art District is a hub of creativity. Explore the studios and galleries of local and international artists, gaining insight into Shanghai's vibrant art scene.

Engage with the artists and learn about the inspirations behind their works. Many galleries in M50 also feature rotating exhibits, ensuring that each visit brings a new and exciting artistic experience.

5. Traditional and Modern Entertainment:

- Acrobatics at ERA Intersection of Time: Experience the breathtaking performances of Chinese acrobats at ERA, a multimedia extravaganza that combines traditional acrobatics with modern technology.

Book tickets in advance for this visually stunning show that tells the story of China's past, present, and future through jaw-dropping acrobatic feats, cutting-edge technology, and elaborate costumes. ERA offers a unique and immersive entertainment experience that showcases China's cultural evolution.

- Shanghai Disney Resort: For a family-friendly adventure, spend a day at the Shanghai Disney Resort, where magical experiences and beloved characters come to life in a unique Chinese setting.

Explore the distinct features of Shanghai Disneyland, such as the Enchanted Storybook Castle, the largest and most interactive Disney castle in the world. The resort seamlessly blends Disney magic with Chinese culture, offering a one-of-a-kind Disney experience.

Disney Castle, Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai's allure lies in its ability to seamlessly blend the old and the new, offering visitors a multifaceted experience. From the historic charm of The Bund to the futuristic skyline of Pudong, and from traditional gardens to cutting-edge art districts, Shanghai beckons explorers with its rich tapestry of culture and innovation. This vibrant metropolis is a testament to China's dynamic spirit and serves as an open invitation for travelers to immerse themselves in its captivating blend of tradition and modernity. Whether you're an art enthusiast, a history buff, a foodie, or a thrill-seeker, Shanghai has something to offer, making it a destination that leaves an indelible mark on the hearts of those who venture into its dynamic embrace.


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