A short history of Shanghai

Shanghai, located on the eastern coast of China, has a fascinating history that dates back over a thousand years. Originally a small fishing village, it grew into a major port city during the Ming Dynasty. In the 19th century, Shanghai became a thriving international trade hub, attracting merchants and settlers from around the world. It played a significant role in China's modernization and witnessed rapid development during the early 20th century. Today, Shanghai is a global financial center and a symbol of China's economic growth.

FAQ for Shanghai

What is the best way to get there?

  • By air: Shanghai has two international airports - Pudong International Airport and Hongqiao International Airport.
  • By train: Shanghai is well-connected to major cities in China via high-speed trains.
  • By sea: Shanghai has a port that serves as a gateway for cruises and cargo ships.

What is Shanghai famous for?

  • The Bund: Shanghai's iconic waterfront promenade with stunning views of the city skyline.
  • Yu Garden: A classical Chinese garden known for its beautiful architecture and tranquil atmosphere.
  • Oriental Pearl Tower: A futuristic TV tower offering panoramic views of Shanghai.
  • Nanjing Road: One of the world's busiest shopping streets, lined with luxury boutiques and department stores.
  • Shanghai Disneyland: A magical theme park that delights visitors of all ages.

What are five interesting facts about Shanghai?

  • Shanghai is the largest city in China by population, with over 24 million residents.
  • It has the world's fastest commercial Maglev train, reaching speeds of up to 431 km/h (268 mph).
  • Shanghai is home to the world's second-tallest tower, the Shanghai Tower, standing at 632 meters (2,073 feet).
  • The city hosted the 2010 World Expo, attracting millions of visitors from around the globe.
  • Shanghai is known for its vibrant nightlife, with numerous bars, clubs, and entertainment venues.

How did Shanghai get its name?

Shanghai's name translates to "Upon the Sea" in Chinese, reflecting its coastal location at the mouth of the Yangtze River.

What are some travel tips for Shanghai?

  • Carry a map or use a navigation app to navigate the city's extensive metro system.
  • Try local street food, such as xiaolongbao (soup dumplings) and shengjianbao (pan-fried buns).
  • Be cautious of scams and pickpocketing in crowded tourist areas.
  • Respect local customs and traditions, such as removing your shoes when entering someone's home.
  • Learn a few basic Mandarin phrases to communicate with locals.

Do I need a visa?

Most visitors to China, including Shanghai, require a visa. Check with your local Chinese embassy or consulate for specific visa requirements.

When is the best time to visit Shanghai?

Spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) are the best seasons to visit Shanghai, as the weather is pleasant and comfortable.

Are there local customs I should know for i.e. Drinking, Greetings, Public transit?

When greeting someone, a handshake is common. It is polite to address people using their formal titles, followed by their last name. In public transit, it is customary to give up your seat to the elderly, disabled, or pregnant women. Drinking is a common social activity, but it is important to drink responsibly and not to overindulge.

What is the time zone for Shanghai?

Shanghai is in the China Standard Time (CST) zone, which is UTC+8.

What are the voltage/plug types?

The voltage in Shanghai is 220V, and the plug types used are mainly Type A, Type C, and Type I. It is advisable to carry a universal adapter.

What is the currency?

The currency used in Shanghai is the Chinese Yuan (CNY).

Are ATMs readily accessible?

ATMs are widely available in Shanghai, especially in major commercial areas and tourist spots.

Are credit cards widely accepted in Shanghai?

Major credit cards, such as Visa and Mastercard, are accepted in many hotels, restaurants, and shops in Shanghai. However, it is advisable to carry some cash for smaller establishments and street vendors.

Can you use ApplePay and Google Pay?

ApplePay and Google Pay are becoming increasingly accepted in Shanghai, especially in larger establishments and international chains.

How much do I tip in Restaurants/bars, Hotels, Taxis, Tour guides, etc.?

Tipping is not a common practice in China. However, in upscale hotels and restaurants, a service charge may already be included in the bill. If you wish to show appreciation for exceptional service, a small tip is appreciated but not expected.

Accommodation in Shanghai

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City Information for Shanghai

Founded Population Elevation
5th century AD 29 million Source 4 meters (13 feet)

Average temperatures for Shanghai

Season/Month Temperature (Celsius) Temperature (Fahrenheit)
Spring (March to May) 10°C to 20°C 50°F to 68°F
Summer (June to August) 25°C to 35°C 77°F to 95°F
Autumn (September to November) 15°C to 25°C 59°F to 77°F
Winter (December to February) 0°C to 10°C 32°F to 50°F