Things to Do in Shanghai

Shanghai is an intrepid, thriving city that has moved itself to the forefront of China's impending future growth. With nicknames like the Queen of the Orient and the Paris of the East, Shanghai is proud of its modern-day image. There is certainly no shortage of things to do in Shanghai, and there are many alluring Shanghai tours worth booking if you want further insight into one of the world's largest cities. Getting to all the Shanghai attractions on your list is made easier by the city's extensive bus and metro systems, both of which have plans for expansion. You can also get around efficiently and effectively by way of taxi if you please. Shanghai tourism is on the rise, and there are certainly some major Shanghai attractions that visitors will want to consider. The following are just some ideas for fun things to do in Shanghai, and between your sightseeing endeavors, you can always enjoy some relaxation time at one of the many Shanghai parks.

The Bund

The Bund is without question one of the most popular Shanghai attractions. This waterfront area, which runs for about a mile along the Huangpu River, forms the easternmost boundary of Old Shanghai, and here you can gaze at buildings of various architectural styles. The Bund, which means "embankment", is a most significant Chinese landmark, and should you head here at night, the glimmering skyscrapers make for a dazzling backdrop. After a languid stroll along The Bund, you might head to the southern end of the famous stretch to peruse the shops or hit one of the few restaurants.

Yu Gardens

Shanghai may be quite modern in parts, but it also retains some vestiges of the past, among the most significant of which is the Yu Gardens complex. Found in the old town section of the city, this Chinese landmark is Shanghai's most renowned Chinese garden, and it is certainly one of the top Shanghai attractions. Though it can get quite crowded here, the Yu Gardens nonetheless offer a nice break from the busy Shanghai streets, and besides the lovely gardens themselves, there are a number of structures that accentuate the complex, such as the famed Five-Dragon wall. Individuals, couples, and families will all enjoy a trip to the Yu Gardens, as it is a Shanghai tourism magnet for very good reason.

Oriental Pearl TV Tower

Asia's tallest TV tower, the Oriental Pearl Tower rises some 1,550 feet into the sky, and it offers visitors a most stunning panoramic view of sprawling Shanghai. The main observation deck at this popular Shanghai tourism icon is found at an elevation of almost 870 feet, and it's high enough by many people's standards. For those who want to get more of a bird's eye view, there is also a Space Capsule viewing deck found at an elevation of around 1,100 feet. If you aren't a fan of heights, you might opt for the views from the 295-foot Space City lookout. High-speed elevators get visitors to the sight decks with speed, and the elevator attendants typically offer various facts about the tower along the way. The Jin Mao Tower, which is Shanghai's tallest skyscraper, is another place to enjoy excellent views of the city.

Shanghai Museum

There are at least a handful of interesting Shanghai museums to visit, and among the best is the Shanghai Museum of Art. Moved to the historic clock tower building in 2000, the Shanghai Museum of Art is most known for its impressive bronze, calligraphy, and ceramics exhibits. There are also some very intriguing paintings to check out here, and visitors can enjoy self-guided audio tours that are certainly worth the small additional fee. After enjoying all that the museum exhibits have to offer, you might enjoy a nice meal at the nice, Western-style restaurant on the 5th floor. Those traveling with kids will certainly want to also consider adding the Shanghai Discovery Children's Museum to their Shanghai tourism agendas.

Jade Buddha Temple

Found less than a mile from downtown Shanghai, the Jade Buddha Temple is certainly among the most intriguing Shanghai attractions. This Shanghai tourism gem, though not very old at all, is nonetheless very rewarding to visit. Among the most interesting artifacts here is a six-foot jade Buddha statue which was arduously dragged quite a long distance by a monk in the latter half of the 1800s. It's certainly interesting to observe the thousands of worshipers who make their way to the Jade Buddha Temple, and the temple's architecture is a joy to set eyes on for sure.

Huangpu River Cruise

A Huangpu River Cruise certainly deserves mention among the top Shanghai tourism draws. The daytime Huangpu River cruises head downriver to the Yangtze, which is a nice treat, and you'll certainly enjoy some wonderful views along the way. Cruise schedules can change with the season, but generally, the morning cruises usually run from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., and the afternoon cruises generally go from 2 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. At night, the 7-9 p.m. Huangpu River cruise doesn't go all the way to the Yangtze, but it does offer up some scintillating nighttime views of the Bund and Pudong (newer section of town). Comfortable seats make the trip all the more relaxing, and you can grab snacks or a meal onboard, as well as hit a cafe/bar selling coffee, tea, and beer. Shorter Huangpu River cruises are available as well, should you be interested.

Shanghai Acrobatics Troupe Show

If luck is one your side, the Shanghai Acrobatics Troupe will be in town performing during your Shanghai trip. Seeing this dazzling group of men and women perform mind-blowing acrobatics and gravity-defying stunts is certainly a treat. Though the Shanghai Acrobatics Troupe has been known to perform at the Shanghai Center Theater, chances are good that you will catch them at their newer home venue, the Shanghai Circus World. Unless the group is performing elsewhere in the world during your visit, you can expect a daily show at 7:30 p.m. There really aren't words to describe the show that these people put on, so you'll just have to see if for yourself!

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