Top attractions in Shanghai
Our most recommended things to do in Shanghai
1. Shanghai: 3-Hour Local Food Tasting Tour
Explore the local restaurant scene of Shanghai on a 3-hour food tasting tour of the city center. Start in the Xintiandi area to taste one of the best dumpling soups in the city. Then, go to the Yunnan Road to sit down at 3 different restaurants and a dessert shop. Marvel at the change in architecture as you move from the French Concession to the shikumen-style buildings that combine western and Chinese elements. Sample authentic dishes such as parched chicken, red-braised pork, scallion oil noodles, candied lotus rice and moon cakes. Try a cup of Longjing green tea or Fujian black tea and get a local insight into life in Shanghai.
What a great evening. Between jet lag and all day sightseeing, it can be a little hard to stay motivated for evening tours. Jim made us completely forget about our tiredness as we were completely absorbed in his descriptions and stories of local neighborhood food, culture, and history. The amount of food and portions were great for us, so we didn’t feel guilty for not eating all that was presented, and we didn’t leave feeling hungry. Everything was so tasty and fresh. Highly recommended!!!!
2. 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 ...
This was such a unique way to see different parts of the city and to learn about new trends and changes in Chinese society. We had a blast!
3. Shanghai: City Lights and Huangpu River Cruise Night Tour
First, you will stop at the Nanjing Road, where you will take a quick stroll. After that, you will take the evening cruise on the Huangpu River. On the cruise, you can see both sides of the river, Pu Dong and Pu Xi, which means “East River” and “West River”. Then, you will have the chance to walk along the Bund, which is known for its international architecture. Here, there are a lot of chic pubs and restaurants in old historic buildings. Afterwards, you will transfer to the Pudong side to enjoy the wonderful view of the newly developed commercial part of Shanghai city. Here, you can spend time on your own or continue back to your starting point.
4. From Shanghai: One-Day Zhouzhuang and Jinxi Small Group Tour
8:00 AM -11:30 AM, Hotel pick-up and journey to Zhouzhuang Water Town: Your guide will be waiting for you in the lobby in the morning at an appointed time. A comfortable car will transfer you and your guide to Zhouzhuang: a water town built amid canals, ponds, and lakes. There are many old buildings and bridges, boat rides, crafts, framed by the quaint water town scenery. Feel free to take many photos and capture the beautiful views as seen in "Shanghai Triad". You will take a gondola and witness the way of life of people living by the canals, first hand. This medieval water town has a history dating back more than 900 years, and has houses and bridges built in both the Ming (1368–1644) and Qing dynasties (1644–1911). Visit the 3 most representative old houses into our itineraries to ensure you will not leave here without knowing of their provenance and history. (Includ...
5. Shanghai 3-Hour Afternoon Tea Tasting and Dessert Tour
Meet your guide at 02:00 PM and begin a relaxing 3-hour afternoon tour along Huaihua Road. Try out some of the tasty mooncakes at 2 local pastry shops. These special pastries are given as gifts during the Mid-Autumn Festival, symbolizing the reunion of the entire family. Stop at a nearby teahouse to experience a traditional Chinese tea ceremony. Taste green tea from Hangzhou and black tea from Fujian. Afterwards, head to a Cantonese dessert restaurant to enjoy a range of sweet flavors. Sample various icy deserts, such as milk pudding with purple sticky rice, papaya, sago or mango puree and amazing almond tofu.
Lu was an amazing guide! He was very friendly, knowledgeable and funny. The wide variety of food and teas were delicious and excellent! The locations were certainly carefully selected. I would definitely recommend this to anyone visiting Shanghai!
6. Shanghai: Zhujiajiao UNESCO Water Town Afternoon Tour
You can either make your own way to the meeting point or be collected at your accommodation. Board the bus and leave Shanghai. Head to the oldest and most well-protected water village in China. Located 16 miles west of downtown Shanghai, Zhujiajiao water village is 400 years old and is one of the city’s best-kept secrets. Discover the picturesque canals and rivers and admire the large Dian Shan Lake. Take the opportunity to go shopping, take a stroll, and explore this beautiful village. Try some local street food and be amazed by the tastes. You can even practice your bargaining skills at the local shops. After spending three hours taking in the local culture, you will return to downtown Shanghai for approximately 6:30 PM.
the trip was value for money . notice that it is outside of the city if you plan to be close to the city. the trip with the boat is short just to take some good pictures. our guide Roy was very well educated friendly and spoke the English language pretty well .also he helped us for general info except the standard trip schedule infos such us providing us infoa for the nightlife etc..our day was a holiday day so consider that for the heavy traffic
7. Shanghai Must-See and Foodie Bike Tour
This is one of the most classic routes for visitors to experience Shanghai in a short period of time. You will cycle along the old Nongtang in the Former Concession area, an area which holds the most famous landmarks. Pass through the ancient garden bridge, then head to The Bund to view the most amazing skyline in the world. It’s well-known as the Shanghai epitome for the 19th century. From there, cross one of the busiest commercial roads - Nanjing Road. Afterward, head off to Yu Garden Area and hang around in its labyrinthine back alleyways and find a lot of interesting hidden gems. Get a taste of local life and see a city with its past and future. Join this unique bike tour and expereince the culture of Shanghai.
May was an outstanding guide and sadly shepherded us through the back streets of Shanghai.
8. From Shanghai: Hangzhou, West Lake Cruise and Tea Plantation
With its inviting views and outstanding scenery, Hangzhou is one of the leading tourist destinations in all of China. It is a city rich with history and was once the capital of China in the 12th Century. After a 3-hour drive, you will first cruise across the West Lake to view unforgettable scenery such as the Three Pools Mirroring the Moon, the Bai Causeway and Solitary Hill. After a traditional Chinese lunch, you will visit Guo’s Villa, one of the best traditional private gardens in the city. Hangzhou is also famous for its Dragon Well tea and you can discover the history of Chinese tea and the traditional tea ceremony on a visit to the Meijiawu Tea Village. Before returning to Shanghai, you will enjoy a drive along the Qiantang River where you can view the Liuhe Pagoda, also known as the Six Harmonies Pagoda. On this tour, you can immerse yourself in the history of Shanghai with the a...
We had a great time. It was my 3rd trip to Hangzhou from Shanghai and I learned more from Grace, our Grayline guide, then I did with the other two trips combined!
9. Shanghai: Oriental Pearl Tower Skip-the-Line Ticket
Check out this famous Shanghai landmark in the Pudong district. Explore a multifunctional site offering sightseeing, catering, shopping, and amusement. Marvel at panoramic views of the city of Shanghai from 263 meters (863 feet). Enjoy hassle-free entry to the Oriental Pearl Tower with your skip-the-line ticket. At 468 meters (1,535 feet) high, the Oriental Pearl is the 4th tallest tower in Asia and the 6th tallest tower in the world. The tower features 11 big and small spheres with a central elevator and giant columns fixed underground. Once inside, first access the 263-meter Sightseeing Floor to admire the views of Shanghai and the perfect landscape of the Bund. Then, feel your feet flying 259 meters (850 feet) off the ground from the glass-bottomed corridor in the Transparent Observatory. After soaking up the best panoramic views, enjoy other activities inside the tower, such as th...
10. Shanghai: Taichi and Kunfu Tea Experience
This Chinese culture experience class starts from 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM every day, with your experience beginning with pickup directly from your hotel. The 3-hour class will begin with a Kunfu tea tasting in which you will learn what is the best temperature for different types of tea. You can also review the source of the tea, learning the difference and development of tea culture in different countries. You will appreciate 2-5 types of tea, learning how to check the tea quality as you go. Following that, you will begin your taichi exercise in which you will learn some of the basic and simple movements from the beginning. You'll learn how to breathe when practicing, as your teacher shows you and corrects your movement face to face. You will then appreciate a teacher's taichi performance, before your class ends with you learning how to preserve your health with further taichi practice.
Frequently asked questions about Shanghai
What top attractions are a must-see in Shanghai?
The must-see attractions in Shanghai are:See all must-see sights in Shanghai
What are the top things to do in Shanghai this week?
The top things to do in Shanghai are:Explore the best things to do in Shanghai on GetYourGuide
Which tours in Shanghai are taking additional COVID-19 precautions?
These experiences in Shanghai are taking additional COVID-19 precautions:See all Shanghai tours on GetYourGuide
Planning Your Visit
When to go
The fall months are the mildest, temperature-wise. Winter gets cold, but is not particularly snowy.
Beware of buying precious minerals like pearl necklaces and jade ornaments from markets - it is common that these are not the real deal.
Check out the English-language newspaper, Shanghai Daily, to see what's going on in the city.
If you suffer from respiratory issues, look into purchasing a mask that covers your nose and mouth before your trip, as the air pollution concentration in Shanghai is very high.
Good to know
- RNB or Yuan (¥)
- Time Zone
- UTC (+08:00)
- Country Code
- Best time to visit
- May through October is the most mild weather, but also the busiest time for Shanghai. Late March and October are ideal for weather and avoiding the peak times for tourists and business travelers.
Other Sightseeing Options in Shanghai
Want to discover all there is to do in Shanghai? Click here for a full list.
What people are saying about Shanghai
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.
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.
Tom was an amazing guide and he incredibly informative!