SHANGHAI

Stay:

  • Les Suites Orient. 5* Boutique hotel at the Shanghai Bund right at Huangpu river. They have some charming rooms and a nice lounge with breakfast area. You can book it here.
  • The 5* Grand Hyatt in the Jin Mao Tower with its 88 floors is worth a stay if you are not afraid of height. It has a nice rooftop bar called Cloud9. You can book it here.
  • SSAW Narada Boutique Hotel Yu Garden. 4* hotel only a 5 min. walk from the line 10 metro station Yu Garden. You can book it here.

Eat:

  • The Chinese kitchen offers so many different dishes. Just some suggestions:
  • For a simple start, plain noodle soups (Yang Chun Mian) or scallion pancakes (Cong You Bing) are great.
  • Zong Zi are sticky rice dishes packed in bamboo leafs, available with meat, vegetarian or sweet red bean paste inside. They are eaten at the Dragon Boat Festivals as well.
  • The big soup buns called Tang Bao are fun to eat with a straw. Their little brothers Xiao Long Bao are a specialty and represent Shanghai Dim Sum.
  • A wonderful name for a tasty dish: Shi Zi Tou, "Lion Head" meatballs with cabbage.
  • Din Tai Fung has many branches in Shanghai, e.g. at Jing‘an Kerry Centre. There you can try a variety of Dim Sum. Pork + soft crab is a tasty one. Metro stop Jing‘an Temple on lines 2+7.
  • Qimin Organic Hot Pot. Go there for some great hot pot experience. You get your own base soup and can toss in what you like – even harvest your own mushrooms from a tree trunk. It is located in Reel Mall. Metro stop Jing‘an Temple on lines 2+7.
  • South Beauty. The branch on 881 Yan‘an middle road has a nice setting with garden. The place serves Sichuan food that is not too spicy. Metro stop Jing‘an Temple on lines 2+7.
  • Ben Jia South Korean. Here you can taste some Korean table-BBQ. It comes with a variety of little side dishes and a large plate of salad to wrap your charcoal grilled food in. Metro stop Yan‘an West Road lines 3+4.
  • Ye Shanghai. Hip Chinese restaurant in the lively area of Xintiandi. They even have a signature cocktail called Yegroni. Metro Station Huangpi South Road line 1 or Xintiandi lines 10+12.
  • Manne et Santé. Located in the French Concession area. Here you can eat Western inspired food or have coffee in a cute location. Just across the street is the book cafe, Han Yuan.
Bars:
  • In the Three on the Bund building there are various restaurants, some designed by Chinese architects Neri & Hu. On the 4th floor you can find Jean-Georges where you can sip on a cocktail while enjoying the bright interior.
  • Xintiandi is a nice trendy area to eat and drink. Try some Shanghai craft beer for example or listen to music bands. Metro stop Xintiandi lines 10+12.
  • To get a glimpse of the Shanghai 20‘s visit the Jazz bar at the Peace Hotel. There are also other Jazz bars around the Bund area.
Do & See:
  • Take a stroll along the Bund called – Waitan by locals – for a view on the Pudong skyline (best in the evening, lights are turned off at 11pm).
  • Shopping along one of the longest shopping roads of the world: Nan Jing Road.
  • For Chinese art, paintings, calligraphy etc. visit the Shanghai Museum.
  • Yu Yuan. When walking through the Yu Yuan Old Street you will feel that it is a very popular sight. Either come before 10am or just go with the crowd. Don‘t get terrified by the amount of people who want to cross the 9zigzag bridge. The queues move pretty fast in China and being on the bridge offers nice views. Also this way you get to the ticket entrance to the beautiful Yu Garden.
  • Tianzifang is an old town area that has been successfully preserved (it was in danger to be destroyed). There you can do souvenir shopping, eat small snacks or have a glimpse into a local market (Taikang Road). Metro stop Dapuqiao on line 9.
  • Strolling around the Old French Concession is a relaxing way of seeing more of Shanghai. The tree-lined roads lead to small cafes and stores.
  • South Bund Street Market. Come here to have some clothes tailored! There are a lot of tailors in this space and it is fun to walk through it looking at the little booths. Two picks: Have a traditional Chinese dress called Qipao made at Annie's, Booth No. 186 or a modern Chinese-style jacket at Jenny Ding, Booth No. 273.
  • An easy-to-do day trip: Jiading. You can reach Jiading by metro line 11, take the right one until Jiading North final stop. From there you take a taxi (~12 kuai) to the Confucius Temple Kong Miao. The temple is small, nice and for free. Then walk  into the old town and admire the lovely small alleys and the Fahua pagoda. Have lunch at Ythai and order their crispy chicken. Don‘t miss tea tasting at the Pu‘er Tea specialized tea house. Next door you have a lute academy where you can peek in. Sometimes they have evening shows. Jiading museum is nice as well and the Qiuxia park next to it is very charming, it closes at 4.30pm.
  • Other places worth visiting by train are Hangzhou – to see the cradle of Chinese silk – and Suzhou, where star architect I.M. Pei designed the Suzhou museum.

For some practical tips on China (websites, apps etc.) click here.