Shanghai Tours and Trips

How to get the most when you are in Shanghai

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How to get the most when you are in Shanghai? Sightseeing, exploring are usual touristy things you will be doing, getting to know the place, culture, people and its history. We have build the recommendations around Viator on ‘top pick’, ‘day trips’ and ‘extended tours’.

A lot to choose from, we know you are interested in something different, fun and with local flavour… we bring them on!

Among those Top Pick, the trips to those old lanes and alleyways can be really fascinating. They are like “old town” in any major cities, around the initial residential area. People have emotional bonds with the old lanes and alleyways, they survived with time, especially in a city like Shanghai which had so much and with so much going on. The tour guides are awesome, you can discover the local charm and enjoy an unusual outing in the town. Check on our link Shanghai Old Lanes & Alleyways

We also recommend a unique tour of Shanghai’s Jewish Quarter, led by the local expert. It tells the story about the Jewish life into the previous Mid Century. Shanghai sheltered thousands Jewish refugees during the war time, people like Sasson (the initial owner of the Peace Hotel) has significance in shaping Shanghai’s landscape. The tour lasts 4 hours and includes a visit to Jewish Refugees Museum, Shanghai Jewish Quarter Tour will sure provide you exceptional insights about this city.

The tour on “Shanghai Circus World”  is worth seeing too, you have the chance to learn about Chinese history and culture, get some understanding on martial art, it makes such a fun trip for family.

Of course, we will continue to recommend the tours / trips, share our excitement, and, have a feel on our selection. Oh, Top Pick

What are the Fun 

(Image is from “Viator )

Autumn leaves Shanghai

Autumn is the time to see Shanghai

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Autumn time to see Shanghai is just lovely. After the sizzling hot summer, the air is cooler and place is back to entertain, this is the season to visit the place and it has the offers on your ‘wish list’ ticked.

It’s gonna be busy when you are here this year. Shanghai Tourism Festival commences 9th Sep and ends in 6th Oct, a true extravaganza for the city, includes food, lights, music, sports. The Annual Shopping Festival kick starts the Tourism Festival this weekend with promotions and concerts, participated by 2,000 companies, should be worthwhile to make trips to some of their outlets.

People can hardly miss the fun in this year’s Tourism Festival. A variety of events spreads across several districts. For instance, XuHui district prides itself with Hengfu Art Festival, it tempts with jogging events (every Saturday during the festival), street concerts and evening shows in the park. Some of its events are held at the celebrities residential villas, such as Jin Ba (late novelist) and LePing Zhang (late cartoonist). (See our highlights for this district.)

Apart from these events, autumn is genuinely nice to visit Shanghai. Change between the seasons brings out the charm of a lively cosmopolitan: colours, smells, noise and food. You can easily explore the city and its beyond, without worrying sunburn or freezing cold. (check on our affection for all seasons in Shanghai)

What’s the fun.

Find any bargains.

city walk

More about city walk in Shanghai

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City walk in Shanghai has a lot to choose. One of my favourites usually starts from Jing’an Temple, many times I end my route in French concession. With lined trees and small cafes, so pleasant in the afternoon, it’s perfect for a walk.

It will get lot better and more intriguing. As XuHui district, where French concession is, is undergoing renovation for the 342 buildings, mostly within the area of HengShan road and FuXing road, aims to complete by the end of the year. Categorised as Hengshan-Fuxing Road Historic Reservation Area, it covers an area of more than 221,000 square meters, also includes some areas in French concession.

It must be challenging to initiate such a reservation project, Craftsmen with traditional construction skills are called in, some skills are brought to the city by Western architects in the early last century, long lost though, now is crucial for this preservation work.

Historic figures and celebrities have resided here in the past, those old buildings complimentary the fascinating diversity of the city’s architecture style. Once reservation project done, a detailed database for each building will be available, including its size, inner structure, original designing charts as well as historic photos.

Quite exciting to see a quiet area being revived, already popular with its trendy bars, restaurants, chic hotels and fabulous boutiques, the area has become one of the major attractions for residents and tourists.

Why not take a walk in this area when you are in town, you may find this place the same interesting?  what is it then.

Oh, What are the Fun

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Stay chilled in hot summer

How to stay chilled summer in Shanghai

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How to stay chilled hot summer in Shanghai? Temperature has soared above 35c last couple of weeks, it has stayed there, then heading to 40c. I hear you…

Nothing should put you off to enjoy the summer in Shanghai. We have mentioned in our blog on walking, exploring and sightseeing, and excursions to the traditional towns nearby. If you prefer indoors and stay chilled, galleries, museums, theatres, or, stay tuned with the latest events check on Time Out Shanghai, or, download the App ‘Shanghai WoW’ for the promotions of the trendy places.

Stay chilled in hot summer, or the list for “stay indoors” is never going to be short. Places like museums, say Shanghai Museum, is interesting to visit. Or, try book stores, they are dotted around the city, chain store Xin Hua book stores or some independent ones. Zhong Shu Ge 钟书阁 was voted the most beautiful book store, the 1st one was at the out skirt Thames village, it expanded to a 2nd outlet nearby Iing’An temple last year. With its chic design, it attracts not only bookworms. A reader friendly of Foreign Languages Book Store at Fu Zhou Lu (by metro line 1 or 2) is a “refuge” if those wants to make up the book store visits but with limited Chinese reading skill.

Anybody likes peace and quiet in the hot days, an easy choice is to go to the Library. Shanghai has the 2nd largest library in China. At Huai Hai Road, inside French Concession, this is a nice spot to pass time. Another good news is Shanghai will add a new public library by 2020 at Qin Pu. With its stylish ambience, fantastic space and proposed 24 hours opening time, it will appeal to many visitors. (the photo image is from the web).

What are the Fun

Visit Shanghai Museum

Summer in Shanghai

Hot Summer in Shanghai

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Summer in Shanghai can be challenging, it certainly raises the threshold for dealing with the heat. In our blog ‘’, we suggest to get away from the town centre for the day, where you see the nature and enjoy the fresh air.  Blister hot in the city, it easily reaches to 35 degree, plus the days of hot temperature is more in the East. With the humidity, it is essential to feel refreshed to keep the energy level.

After quite a few days heat wave in the UK, I find it easy to cope the summer in Shanghai, with air cons in each household and most of the places with roof. Then, it means you have to stay indoors. For anyone who’d like to get out, you can either venture out to the small towns close by, or, little islands nearby Shanghai, such as Chong Min, or, Qian Dao Lake, where you can stay in the local B&B, fresh food, sometimes seafood in Chong Min or Qian Dao are served.

Nature is not difficult to reach. An article in today’s Metro reports that there will be three country parks, planned twenty suburban country parks with 130 square km, all will be done in Shanghai speed. They will replace the out dated industrial land, as part of the regeneration programme for the city. For sure, chilling out In Shanghai will be more resourceful.

Our image here is a small town in the west side of Shanghai, like those places, they are tranquil, the perfect for get-away. For those who just want to stay in the town, the choice for ‘chill out’ couldn’t be more, take a leaf from our selection here.Tours and Sights in Shanghai

to read the relevant article we mentioned ‘Metro’ get to know the locations of the ‘country parks’

The KunLun Jing’an at Hua Shan Road

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The KunLun Jing’an, previously Hilton Hua Shan sits on the edge of Shanghai’s French concession. It is situated at the prime location, Jing’an, just a few hundred meters away from Jin’an Temple, main traffic line (ie, north south line) is around the corner.

This Hilton has been around since the early 90s. Not kidding, a person’s feeling towards this Hilton can show his/her age. It was an event when the hotel was open to operate. Young graduates lined a long queue to battle the way for being recruited, they turned back on the state-sponsored placement, with the hope of career prosperity. Hospitality industry was in.

Two decades on, competition in the trade is in a completely different world. However, just like this Hilton, anywhere, hard to beat a hotel with the advantage of ‘location, location and location’. Whether you are in the town on business trip or for holiday, this one can be a cosy pick. Locals nearby also tends to appoint it as the meeting point before the shopping trips or dinner dates. The bird view from the Hilton has moved on from the overview of the residential blocks to the buzz of a commercial centre nowadays. Not only just Jing’an temple nearby is an attraction, also the convenience of getting around, such as within walking distance for the metro line 1, 2 and 7.

I enjoy the long walk from there, to explore the parks nearby (Jing’an, Xiang Yang), independent book stores, or, interesting boutiques in the area of French concession. Or, stretch out more, reach to the point where Pushkin statue is. Not bad exercise for afternoon stroll.

Book a Room, or check on Oh, what are the Fun

Go to our ‘To Do’ for more info

Shanghai Metro Excellence

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Shanghai metro transport is excellent. I hear you say. It is hard to beat the public transport in Shanghai. Recently Shanghai metro lines increased operating hours (Metro Timetable ). What couldn’t be even better is some lines work almost around the clock. Just think that summer is around the corner, the transport is fab not only on the available routes, the time and the prices, where can you get the better deals elsewhere for a city break? We are not even talking about any transports running above the ground.

Not far in the memory there was only one metro line available, Line 1, it is the route between the train station (north) to the then new area Xin Zhuang. Twenty years on, there are 16 metro lines fanning out the city. Line 4 (Inner circle line) moves around the city where the usual hangouts and walks are, the rest take you to all different directions, Line 11 to Jiang Su Province, supposed the longest, this record sure will soon be broken by Shanghai standard.

Shanghai metro lines have all the characteristics of a metropolis, the frequent trains, stylish multi-entrances, versatile underground shopping malls, convenient connections between the lines. All box ticking you need in a major city, well, let’s put ‘the crazy rush hour’ and ‘so many people’ aside just for the time being.

Some new built routes are on my priority list for the next visit, especially those where you get the chance to see the traditional towns, you only need continuing on another public transport. We share the image of a beautiful water town nearby Zhu Jia Jiao. Getting there by Line Hu Zhou See our blog

Lots of options for planning the trips with the excellent transport net, or, drop a note if we can be of any help 

Shanghai City at night

River bank Wai Tan

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The Bund is River Bank, Wai Tan, called by locals. At the west side of Huang Pu river, it is Zhong Shan Dong Yi Road (the 1st east Zhong Shan Boulevard), one of the heavy traffic lines. It reaches Su Zhou creek to the north, stretches as long as 1.5 km.

It’s not just the river bank. People see the Bund as the building collection or sightseeing landmark, it is one of the reasons Shanghai is known for its rich collections of art deco architecture. The buildings with the styles range from renaissance, gothic or baroque have been there since the beginning of the 20th century, housed numerous headquarters, banks, clubs, especially at one point when Shanghai was determined to be the financial centre of the East.

It’s always exciting to go to the Bund when I was little. It was like seeing something splendid or old glamour. This sense of excitement still exists, now it has gone through several stages of major re-structuring. Just off Waibaidu Bridge, a statue of the first mayor in Shanghai (post 1949) stands. The road is more organised, the buildings are more commercially orientated. There are restaurants, bars, boutiques in the old buildings. A plaza on the riverbank, where people go for dancing, tai chi, it’s a fabulous meeting point.

Apart from visiting the old buildings, the Bund has more to offer, such as river cruise in the night, where you get on the boat here, the night view on the Bund is indeed awesome (our image here just catchesthe glimpse of it); or, enjoying the view from the Bund to the east side Pu Dong, it is hard to imagine the view was less interesting a couple of decades ago, look at it now, the view across the river is the epitome of modern and future.

Oh, what are the Fun

See the list of the buildings

Photo of Shanghai Old Town

Water Town Zhu Jia Jiao

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Water town Zhu Jia Jiao is the one very nearby Shanghai, comparing to the other similar around.

Established in the 2 centuries BC, Zhu Jia Jiao was always a market town for clothing and rice trades. With the presence of its booming antique stores, it managed to consolidate the prestige at the dynasties Ming and Qing, You still can trace those historic shops in alleyways.

Now Zhu Jia Jiao is part of the Shanghai, it sits within Qin Pu Division and is accessible by public transports at the People’s Square or near Shanghai Stadium or by frequent Express Line ‘Hu Zhou’.

You can have a ride on the boat, given the town name as the ‘Venice in the east’. It is said 36 bridges connect the town throughout, all in different shapes and materials such as wooden or stone or marble, You will enjoy taking the photos of these ancient bridges, or, the view at Ma Jia Garden (one of the largest manor style gardens in the southern China).

Old pharmacy Tong Tian He is at the original location, the vintage Chinese pharmacy is so charming with its surroundings.  However, Zhu Jia Jiao went through the revamp in 2012, added with shopping malls and entertainment complex. Let’s hope the authenticity of this old town is not threatened entirely.

Half a day trip can give you the chance to put a piece of jigsaw in your collection of traditional Chinese charm. You can taste some local dishes before heading back Shanghai.

Why not Try our carefully selected programme: Half a Day at Water Town Zhu Jia Jiao

Yu Garden

See Yu Garden for visual treat

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Nested in the heart of city centre, Yu Garden has the layout of traditional Chinese garden: pavilion, artificial mountains, willow trees, ponds and the magnificent zigzag bridge. Built in the 16th century,  the only traditional garden in the north of Shanghai, whether you are in Shanghai for a couple of days or longer, this place is a must see. We recommended this gem in our blog “One Day In Shanghai”(One Day In Shanghai).

Not only Yu Garden prides itself a visual feast, it makes a worthy trip for shopping. For a long time, it is the heaven for the wholesalers, when they source anything locally produced. Today, you still have plenty of choices for your Christmas list or just the impulsive binges.

Restaurants and food stores boast another reason for visiting. Lu Bo Lang and Shanghai Restaurant have been there for years, they offer the traditional food with local flavour, so delicate. Those restaurants often attract long queues of hungry eaters. The best thing in life is always worth waiting. One of the afternoons, you sit at Lu Bo Lang, sipping the Chinese tea with the delightful Dim Sum, a lake in your view when looking out the window, it is divine.

Getting there is easy.  Almost every local knows its location. Metro line 10 and plenty of bus services go through there. Don’t be put off by the crowds, popular places like Yu Garden are often packed with visitors all day, perhaps try to avoid the peak hours, I wouldn’t miss out the opportunity for the local Dim Sum.

Our list for you to consider Discovery “the Traditional Charm”.