Shanghai Bucket List: Amazing Places to Visit in Shanghai, China
As a Filipino who has a deep love for travel, I always find traveling to neighboring Asian countries the most memorable one, including my recent trip to Shanghai.
Besides being China’s biggest city and a global financial hub, do you know what else you can see and do in bustling Shanghai?
Surprisingly, it continues to flourish and certainly is booming with new destinations waiting to unfold.
We rounded up amazing activities and places to visit in Shanghai, so read along!
Take a Huangpu River Cruise
Treat yourself with a cruise along the Huangpu River, which stretches 70 miles long, and gets a breathtaking view of the Bund and its surrounding areas such as the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the Shanghai International Convention Center Jin Mao Tower, to name a few.
Whichever time you decide to board, this activity will definitely be worth it, as you get to see another side of Shanghai you don’t usually see on the internet.
Just a tip, if you want to see the towering building glow and illuminates, try booking a Huangpu River Cruise at night!
Available Tours: Huangpu River Cruise
Go on a cruise along the Huangpu River and get an extraordinary view of the Bund and the surrounding areas. With a fully flexible ticket, turn up at a time that’s most convenient for you, go to the port and just present your voucher to get on board.
The cruise starts from the Bund and will cruise along to view the most popular sights along the Huangpu River such as the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the Shanghai International Convention Center, Jin Mao Tower, International Finance Center, the Shanghai Center, and more (there are way too many to mention!)
You can go any time of day and get to different sights of Shanghai in the morning, afternoon, or evening! This tour is a great introduction to the beautiful city, perfect for first-timers in Shanghai!
Have Fun at Disneyland Park
Make your childhood dreams come true and revel into non-stop wandering at Disneyland Park! No one is too old for Disney, agree?
Located in Pudong, Shanghai, this theme park offers various recreational activities and attractions, including Camp Discovery, Happy Circle, Roaring Rapids, Rex’s Racer, Skating Rink, Alice in Wonderland Maze, Peter Pan’s Flight, Marvel Universe, and more!
Available Tours: Shanghai Disneyland (1 Day Admission) – Same Day Booking
Shanghai Disneyland, the first theme park of its kind in Mainland China, is a world of boundless possibilities and a place to create cherished memories that last a lifetime.
Lush gardens, live stage productions, and thrilling attractions will appeal to guests of all generations who visit its six lands.
Guests also will encounter Disney characters in each land, including Mickey Mouse, Mulan, Baymax, Disney princesses, Captain Jack Sparrow, and Winnie the Pooh.
See the Jade Buddha Temple
Contrary to the lively and bustling Shanghai, here at Jade Buddha Temple, everything is different where you can simply feel the peace and tranquility.
It’s one of the most popular stops in Shanghai, and one of the most famous Buddha religious temples. Inside, you’ll discover the Devajara Hall, Mahavira Hall, and the Jade Buddha Tower.
Here, you’ll find a 1.9m-high pale-green jade Buddha, which is said to be the temple’s centerpiece. At the Reclining Buddha Hall, there’s a small reclining white jade Buddha from Burma displayed in a glass cabinet. It is usually crowded, especially during the Chinese New Year.
Enjoy exhibits at Shanghai Museum
Immerse into the rich culture of China and its most timeless tradition by discovering some exhibits at Shanghai Museum, situated at People’s Square in the Huangpu District of Shanghai.
This modern museum, designed by local architect Xing Tonghe is a 4-storey building divided into three exhibitions. It is housing a high-quality collection of ancient collections from hundreds of Chinese bronze pieces, ceramics, seals, sculptures, and paintings dating back in the 13th century.
Visit Yuyuan Garden
Be the envy of your social feed when you get to upload some pictures taken here at Yuyuan Garden or Happiness Garden.
One of the reasons why it’s a must-see attraction in Shanghai is its peaceful ambiance, garden architecture, pavilions, archways, and rich history.
If you get to watch old Chinese movies and want to feel what it looks like in the old times, this is the place. According to history, visiting here brings good luck, especially when you walk across the Jiu Qu Bridge.
The garden is divided into six areas: the Sansui Hall, Wanhua Chamber, Dianchun Hall, Huijing Hall, Yuhua Hall, and the Inner Garden.
Walk and Shop along Nanjing Road
Shop til you drops at one of the world’s busiest shopping streets – in Nanjing Road. This area, which stretches over 3.4-mile-long is certainly crowded whatever the season or occasion is!
Here, you can explore traditional department stores, numerous modern shopping malls, shop souvenirs at specialty stores, visit theaters, or perhaps stay at international hotels. It’s a shopping haven and something you really can’t miss when you’re in Shanghai!
Aside from that, you can stop by for some street foods such as traditional cakes and smoked fish.
Walk the Bund
The bund is considered to be of Shanghai’s popular attraction. It’s located at the waterfront on the west bank of Huangpu River and is regarded as one of Shanghai’s symbols they take pride in.
Aside from mesmerizing at its sight, you can also fly a kite and even jog! It’s one of the places where locals used to go. Wait until the sunset, and this area turns into a romantic one! No wonder most Chinese dramas are shot here.
Visit Zhujlajiao Water Town
Travel back in time and see this ancient water town ASAP! Recreational activities which can be enjoyed at the 1,700 years-old town includes a Gondola ride, and sightseeing historic bridges, ancient homes, and tasting some local delicacies as well!
Just like in Japan, you can also dress in traditional Chinese clothes and have your pictures taken. You can also visit the Qing Dynasty Post Office, where you can see some old letters written in bamboo and antique postcards of old Shanghai.
Eat at Xian Qiang Fang Restaurant
Skip the fries and other western foods and try dining her at Xian Qiang Fang Restaurant. Its interior speaks of elegance and nobility, which can’t be found elsewhere in the world.
Although renovated, this restaurant has this oriental interior and architecture, which adds a plus point on the dining experience.
They serve traditional yet great-tasting Chinese cuisine, which would delight even those with the most discerning palates.
Visit Longhua Temple
This temple is also one of the oldest, largest, and most authentic attractions in Shanghai. Built in 242 AD, the Longhua Temple should be included in your itinerary if you visit the city.
Things to see here include the bell tower, drum tower, the Grand Hall of the Great Sage, a 40.4 meters high Longhua Pagoda, which lauded this as one of the eight great attractions of Shanghai.
Oriental Pearl TV Tower
You’ve probably seen it a hundred times on TV or even in postcards. Included in Shanghai’s most famous towering building is the Oriental Pearl TV Tower.
It consists of three main full-scope sightseeing spheres, each of these offering an observation deck. So, if you’re an Instagrammer who likes to take buildings and skyscrapers, then this is the place to be.
In case you get hungry, you can drop by at the Revolving Restaurant, billed as the highest revolving restaurant in Asia, with a height of 263 meters.
Available Tours: Oriental Pearl Tower Tickets
Spend a few lofty hours at Shanghai’s Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the third tallest TV tower globally, and the tallest in Asia at 468 meters tall. This enormous construction is arguably the most iconic building in Shanghai and, incidentally one of the country’s must-visit destinations.
Visit Tian Zi Fang
See the artistic side of the locals of Shanghai when you visit Tian Zi Fang. Named as the SOHO in Shanghai, this area has turned into an artsy area where you can see plenty of small restaurants, bars, cafes, crafts shops, antique shops, galleries, and boutiques.
Expect to see artists and trendsetters in this area in Shanghai!
Eat Xiao Long Bao at Din Tai Fung
Dumplings, anyone? More than a delicious bowl of noodle soup, one of the few snacks to try to include the famed Xiao Long Bao at Din Tai Fung.
For an afternoon delight, you can order the Chinese-style traditional layer cakes, which has a very smooth and slightly sticky texture, and is one of most tourists’ favorites!
Every foodie out there, we suggest you don’t miss this famous Chinese steamed bun! The taste is definitely rewarding!
Located at the heart of the city lies Xintiandi, where you can see the colliding of Shanghai’s rich history and culture. Such activities you can do here includes strolling at Shikumen Residences, photography, dining at upscale restaurants, and chill at bars, which can be best visited at night.
If you want to shop, you can head over at the northern block of Xintiandi. Entertainment is endless here!
Visit the Shanghai World Financial Center
Wonder why the Pudong district of Shanghai is one of the favorite places in the city? It’s because they want to marvel at the majestic Shanghai World Financial Center building, symbol of commerce and culture, but most importantly, see the city from a different perspective.
It has a total of 101 floors above the ground and 3 floors under the ground. Still holding its title of being the second tallest skyscraper in the city, it also continues to be a hub of cultural and art exhibitions and information worldwide.
Shanghai Travel and Tour Packages
To help you plan out your visit to Shanghai, we listed places to visit and other amazing activities in Shanghai, China. We also listed some of the best travel deals and tour packages and excellent flight deals and accommodation.
Searching for the best hotels, resorts, and affordable flights in the nearby Cities? Check out our list of affordable Shanghai hotels and resorts via Agoda, or you may also see available Airbnb properties in the city.