Destination Guide - Shanghai

Shanghai is considered to be one of the most progressive cities in China and you only have to look at its futuristic, designer skyline for proof. Don’t strain your neck just looking up at skyscrapers, though – there’s also plenty to see on the ground. Head to The Bund on the Huangpu River for shopping and the Shanghai Gallery of Art. The Jade Buddha Temple offers a stark architectural contrast to the cutting-edge city but is a humble reminder of days gone by. The French Concession offers a unique mix of old and new. If you want to see it all, indulge in some dim sum at a restaurant in the Oriental Pearl TV Tower.

The Basics

Currency: Yuan Renminbi (Y)
Population: 15,000,000
Time zone: +8
Daylight savings: N/A
Languages: Mandarin and Cantonese
Country code: +86
Area code: 21
Electricity voltage: 220V
Electricity hz: 50Hz
Electrical plugs: Two-wire plug with two flat parallel blades or two-wire plug with parallel round prongs
Mobile network: GSM


  • The Bund
  • Oriental Pearl TV Tower
  • French Concession


  • 1 May
    International Labor Day


Like many parts of China, Shanghai experiences weather extremes. In winter (December to February) it regularly drops below 0°C, while in summer (June to August) the city can experience temperatures of 40°C and higher. The most temperate time to visit the city is between September and November.

Getting there and around

The best way to get around Shanghai economically is on their clean and simple subway system – there is also a line that travels direct from the city centre to the airport. Only Shanghai residents can hire cars so taxis are the best option for private travel. It is advisable to have your destination address written out in Mandarin.

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More Travel Insider Shanghai suggestions

See & Do

Jiading, China
Shanghai: Get outta town

Take a break from the sprawling modern metropolis of Shanghai on a daytrip to a more traditional China.

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Travel Blog

Global Roaming: Dumpling hunting in Shanghai

Philip Engelberts hits the streets of Shanghai's French Concession with a noble mission: to find the best dumpling restaurants around.


The Peninsula Shanghai
The Peninsula Shanghai

No.32 The Bund, 32 Zhongshan Dong Yi Road, Shanghai, China.

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Urbn Hotels, Shanghai
Urbn Hotels, Shanghai

183 Jiao Zhou Road, Shanghai, China.

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Ivy Shanghai
Ivy Shanghai

709 Jiaozhou Road, Jing'an District, Shanghai, China.

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Jia Shanghai
Jia Shanghai

931 West Nanjing Road, Shanghai, China.

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Further reading

Here are some suggestions for other destinations in and around China.


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  • Comments
    Showing 5 of 5 comments
  • In your Basics for the languages: Shanghai people speaks Shanghainese & Mandarin.
  • Your Shanghai destination guide shows the country code as +852. I believe it is +86. Thank you.
    Reply to Michael Blewman
    • Hi Michael, Thanks for the feedback. The country code has been changed. Cheers.
  • Nothing about Expo?
  • The Expo is AMAZING. Prepare to queue, make use of the water bottle filling stations, prepare to queue some more, visit the Italy and France pavilion (they are divine and make you feel good to be alive) and prepare to queue. Hot tip? Visit the Malta mini pav and have a glass of wine and eat fabulous pasta to feel normal again. Enjoy!
  • Hi, can anyone recommend a hotel for my family & I to stay. We intend to hit the shops & markets.
    Reply to Rosie
    • Hi Rosie! The Novotel Atlantis Shanghai and Holiday Inn Vista offer free accommodation for kids (according to their sites). For something a bit special we love the URBN hotel - it is within walking distance of Nanjing Road shopping heaven! Have a great stay :)

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