Shanghai French Concession
Culture & History

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Our most recommended Shanghai French Concession Culture & History

Shanghai: 8-Hour Private City Tour

1. Shanghai: 8-Hour Private City Tour

With complete flexibility, follow this itinerary or create your own for a unique Shanghai experience. After meeting your guide at your downtown location, start this 8-hour private tour at the Yu Yuan Garden. Explore the Shanghai Old Street before taking a break in an ancient Chinese tea house. Following tea, head to the People Square to see the City Hall and its surrounding buildings. Stroll along the Xintiandi in the charming former French Concession before enjoying lunch on your own. In the afternoon, marvel at the sacred 19th-century Jade Buddha Temple. Then, head to Bund, which is Shanghai's picturesque waterfront. Admire its soaring skyline and views of the Huangpu River. Drive to Pudong Business and Financial Center where all of the main skyscrapers are located. See the tallest building, Shanghai Tower, as well as the Bottle Opener and Jinmao Tower before being transferred back to your hotel or chosen downtown location.

Shanghai Half Day Tour: Yu Yuan Gardens and Bund Waterway

2. Shanghai Half Day Tour: Yu Yuan Gardens and Bund Waterway

Discover the highlights of Shanghai on this half-day tour. Begin with a visit to the Bund, Shanghai’s picturesque waterfront, well known for its spectacular soaring skyline. From here, enjoy sweeping views of both sides of the Huangpu River. Traveling on, visit the intricately designed Yu Yuan Garden, a classic creation of the Ming dynasty, and the ancient Shanghai Old Street, which originated in the Qing dynasty. Enjoy more of Shanghai's history as you drive along the Former French Concession, a charming neighborhood established while Shanghai was a French settlement. Take time to browse and shop at the souvenir shop before the last stop at Xin Tian Di, a stylish nightlife district with a variety of boutiques, pubs and restaurants. Take advantage of the entertainment here on your own or choose to return to the start point. 

Shanghai Day Tour: Yu Yuan Gardens and the Shanghai Museum

3. Shanghai Day Tour: Yu Yuan Gardens and the Shanghai Museum

Begin with a visit to the Yuyuan Garden, a classic creation of the Ming Dynasty, before exploring the old streets of Shanghai dating back to the Qing Dynasty. Immerse yourself in the Shanghai Museum of Ancient Chinese Art, where a collection of more than 120,000 precious and rare works dazzles visitors, making it the most remarkable cultural institution in the city. Before lunch, visit the famous Silk Museum. After sampling local cuisine at lunchtime, enter the hallowed Jade Buddha Temple and marvel at priceless jade statues from Burma. Next up, enjoy a tour of the famous Bund, also known as the International Architecture Exhibition. Pause at one of the world's best pearl stores on route to Xin Tian Di, a stylish nightlife district with many boutiques, pubs and restaurants. Please note that Yuyuan Garden is closed on Mondays, so you will visit Confucius Temple instead. You will still visit the surrounding area of Yuyuan Garden, such as Shanghai Old Street and the Nine-Zigzag Bridge. Shanghai Museum is also closed on Mondays, so you will visit Shikumen Wulixiang Museum instead.

Shanghai: Xintiandi, CCP Museum and French Concession Tour

4. Shanghai: Xintiandi, CCP Museum and French Concession Tour

After meeting your guide at the meeting point or being picked up from your hotel, start this private tour that explores the most important sites in Shanghai. The first stop will be Tianzifang, a cozy neighborhood housing some of Shanghai's most interesting and creative businesses. Your guide will then walk you to the Former French Concession, also known as the FFC, and bring you to the Shanghai Associated House Common Pleas. Listen to the interesting stories about how the UK, US and France ran their courts in Shanghai. Next, head to the Sinan Mansions, an area where only Western villas were allowed to be built. Visit the former residence of general Zhou Enlai, housed in a beautiful French-style building, which was also used as the Shanghai Office of the Delegates of the Communist Party of China. Then marvel at Dr Sun Yat-Sen’s former residence, where most of the elements remain untouched. Learn about how he influenced the revolution in China and how he is still one of the most renowned figures in Chinese society.  Finally, visit the Xintiandi, where the CCP was formed. Visit the site of the first National Congress of the CCP to learn how they came into power in China. Your tour will conclude here. You can get advice from your local guide about eateries or bars in the surrounding area.

Shanghai: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour with Lunch

5. Shanghai: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour with Lunch

Your tour guide and driver will pick you up at your Shanghai hotel at around 8:30 AM. The full-day tour begins with a drive to Shanghai Old Street, a business thoroughfare that today boasts a number of tourist attractions, shops, entertainment venues and cultural exhibits. Continue on to Yuyuan Garden, the largest of Shanghai's ancient gardens, featuring Ming and Qing architectural styles. Enjoy the experience of Yu Garden typical Shanghai tea. Next on the itinerary is a stop at The Bund, which for years was the symbol of Shanghai. New financial and commercial houses as well as grand buildings built in the 1930s in the European architectural styles cluster along the Bund. Stop at a local restaurant for a Chinese lunch and later visit the Shanghai Old Wax Figure Museum. Get a sense of the city throughout history through the museum’s scenes of everyday life in Shanghai. After a shopping stop at the Pearl City, you’ll head to a typical alley at Tianzifang. The legacy residential buildings and factories have been transformed into bars, cafes, crafts shops, design studios, galleries and boutiques. Take a walk around the Old French Concession, which is a perfect opportunity for a trip back in time to experience what the French colonial quarter was like. At the end of the tour, you’ll be transferred back to your hotel, arriving by 18:00.

Shanghai: Private and Personalized Guided Tour

6. Shanghai: Private and Personalized Guided Tour

Book a private tour for 4 or 8 hours and inform the local partner of your preferences so that you can be assigned a like-minded guide to take you around the city. With complete flexibility, follow this itinerary or create your own for a unique Shanghai experience. After meeting your guide at your downtown location, start this 8-hour private tour at the Yu Yuan Garden. Explore the Shanghai Old Street before taking a break in an ancient Chinese tea house. Following tea, head to the People Square to see the City Hall and its surrounding buildings. Stroll along the Xintiandi in the charming former French Concession before enjoying lunch on your own. In the afternoon, marvel at the sacred 19th-century Jade Buddha Temple. Then, head to Bund, which is Shanghai's picturesque waterfront. Admire its soaring skyline and views of the Huangpu River. The last stop is the Pudong Business and Financial Center where all of the main skyscrapers are located. See the tallest building, Shanghai Tower, as well as the Shanghai World Finacial Center, and Jinmao Tower before being helped transfer back to your hotel or chosen downtown location.

Real Shanghai: Zhujiajiao and Downtown 3-Day Tour

7. Real Shanghai: Zhujiajiao and Downtown 3-Day Tour

Day 1  From Shanghai airport or railway station, you will be greeted by your driver and transported to hotel for a short break. After a light lunch chosen on your own preference, head out beyond downtown Shanghai for Zhujiajiao Water Town. In this well preserved town, you will have chance to wander under shady trees, sampling various bridges. One remarkable experience in the town would be the silk making in the Silk Museum.   As the evening closes in, back to downtown Shanghai, hop on a night cruise. As the cruise slides over Huangpu River, enjoy dinner while appreciating the dazzling skyline of vibrant Shanghai. Once you land ashore, you will be transported back to your hotel for a sound night rest. Day 2  Today you will spend a full day exploring the past and modern Shanghai. At 8:00 AM, meet your guide at your hotel and make way to part of old Shanghai. You will visit Shanghai Old Street. Historical structures and delicate handcraft shops are well worth browsing. Afterward, in Yuyuan Garden, spectacles are never short of, from pavilions, bridges, ponds, to a cup of Chinese tea at a traditional teahouse. Then you will be on the Bund, a waterfront with colonial characteristics long Huangpu River. Stories behind modern roaming Shanghai can be found from every corner here.   Refreshed over a Chinese lunch, head into Lujiazui where you will get an overview of Shanghai’s history in the Shanghai Museum. Later in old French Concession, enthusiasts of history or shopping will both have chance to search and enjoy. At 5:00 PM, the day tour will end and you will be transferred back to your hotel.

Shanghai Highlights and Zhujiajiao Water Town Private Tour

8. Shanghai Highlights and Zhujiajiao Water Town Private Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel or the cruise port, and then explore Shanghai with a private guide and driver. Marvel at the historic buildings of The Bund along the banks of the Huangpu River. Get sweeping views of both sides of the river before making your way to Yu Yuan Garden. Located by the City God Temple in the Old City, the traditional garden was built during the Ming Dynasty and features dozens of monuments, pagoda temples and water features. See an old Shanghai street from the Qing Dynasty and more. Continue to the former French Concession and explore the charming neighborhood established when the city was a French settlement. Next, visit the 400-year-old Zhujiajiao Water Town to see why its' often referred to as the Venice of the Orient. Enjoy lunch in a famous Chinese restaurant, and then take a boat ride to get a sense of traditional life in southern China. Stroll the old alleyways to see more buildings and bridges, and get some time to shop before the drive back to Shanghai.

Shanghai: Craft Beer Tasting in Former French Concession

9. Shanghai: Craft Beer Tasting in Former French Concession

Take a 3-hour craft beer tasting tour around the former French Concession area in Shanghai. Discover 3 of the best breweries Shanghai has to offer and savor 6 glasses of beer. Greet your local guide at the front gate of Langham hotel. Start off your evening by sampling local wheat beer, pale ale, or dark stout at The Brewer, a gastropub in the Xintiandi area. Next, stroll through Shanghai’s Old City and get an intimate glimpse of the residences and alleyways in this most traditional of neighborhoods. Enjoy a delicious treat of Shanghai-style dumplings, such as potstickers or wontons, and receive an introduction to local rice wine in a traditional liquor store with your guide. A 15-minute walk through other historic neighborhoods brings you to Sinan Mansions, a set of private villas dating back to the 1920s that have been renovated into an upscale lifestyle destination. Here, find the award-winning Boxing Cat Brewery, and try unique craft pilsners, lagers, stouts, and rotating specials on tap. The tour ends at Shanghai Brewery near Fuxing Park to taste even more craft beers. At the end of the night, your tour guide will help you hail a taxi back to your hotel.

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What people are saying about Shanghai French Concession

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 180 reviews

I had one of the best sightseeing tours. I left all the planning to Tom and he came up trumps. During these Covid times he had planned ahead to ensure we could enter all the attractions I wanted to see. He was knowledgeable, relaxed and easy to talk to. I look forward to my next trip to Shanghai when I will book Tom again. I will also recommend him to friends and colleagues who visit Shanghai too.

What a great way to see a lot of the major Shanghai sights (in a day!). Tom was a fantastic guide and spoke perfect English. I have been to many temples throughout Asia, but learned more about Buddhist temples and Chinese Buddha statues through Tom than all previous temple tours combine. He’s extremely knowledgable, not just on Buddhism, but all of Shanghai and it’s culture and history.

Tom was an amazing tour guide who was flexible and wonderfully knowledgeable. He communicates so well both before and during the tour I learned so much from him about the local history and even the plans for the city in the future. Would definitely recommend you book his tour! (I travel extensively and he is one of the best most knowledgeable guides I’ve ever had!)

Our guide Tom was so informative. We learnt so much about Shanghai and their culture and history. We had some requirements which got sorted to make it a great experience. We got so much out of it in such a short time

Tom is a great guide. Vast knowledge about history, but also gives interesting facts about Chinese lifestyle. I enjoyed every moment. Definitely will recommend.