What to see in Shanghai in 3 days

Who I am
Martí Micolau

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Shanghai is a cosmopolitan city, full of life, which it presents itself as a reality divided in two: on one side of the river, the ancient heart, the one where the temples are located, the typical Chinese architecture and the large manicured gardens, with the characteristic tea houses and bazaars; on the other side, the modern city, with futuristic buildings and breathtaking skylines.

If well organized, three days can be enough to dedicate the right amount of time to each attraction. So here's the our itinerary on what to see in Shanghai in 3 days.


  1. 1 day
  2. 2 day
  3. 3 day
  4. How much does a weekend in Shanghai cost
  5. User questions and comments

1 day

1 - Morning: Breakfast, Jade Buddha Temple, Jingan Temple, former French Concession

Our Shanghai itinerary starts from the famous Jade Buddha Temple, located on Anyuan Road. before entering, we stop at 1165 Coffee for a quick breakfast and then we continue.

Il Jade Buddha Temple is currently frequented by about seventy monks, dedicated to prayer and various daily jobs. The interior is characterized by saffron yellow walls and the presence of the imposing Buddha statue made of white jade stone and which is two meters high. The temple is open daily from 08:30 to 16:30 and the entrance fee is approximately € 2,50 (however, the monks also accept a free offer).

With a long walk of about forty minutes or by taxi, it is then You can reach the Jingan Temple, located in a very commercial area of ​​the city. Inside it is possible to admire the Largest Buddha in all of China, almost four meters high. The temple is open daily from 07:30 to 17:00 and the entrance fee is CNY 30,00 (approximately € 3,90).

From the temple, in just a quarter of an hour of walking, it is possible to reach the former French Concession, that is an area of ​​the city that in the last years of the 800th century, was granted to the French consul by the Chinese governor: naturally, all architecture is influenced by French culture and, walking through the streets of the district, it is possible to admire old industrial buildings transformed into trendy clubs and luxury boutiques.

2 - Afternoon: Lunch, People's Square, Shanghai Museum, Grand Theater

We have lunch right in the neighborhood of the former French Concession, perhaps at Lost Heaven Bar, which offers Chinese cuisine starting from € 18,00 per person for a full lunch.

After recovering our energies, we move on near the Huangpu River, to visit Piazza del Popolo (Renmin Square, free and always accessible) and, above all, the Shanghai Museum, where the eleven galleries tell, through finds of all kinds, the five thousand years of Chinese history. The museum can be visited for free every day from 09:00 to 17:00) We can reach this area of ​​the city with the metro lines 1, 2 or 8, getting off at the People's Square stop.

Right next to the museum, we also find it Shanghai Grand Theater which can be accessed depending on the schedule of shows scheduled and with the costs it foresees. At the end of the visits, we head to the Xintinadi district, where we will spend the evening.

3 - Evening: Dinner, Xintiandi

Xintiandi is one of the neighborhoods located in the extensive area of ​​the French Concession and, among others, is the most suitable for spending the evening, thanks to the numerous clubs of all kinds, which attract both tourists and local people. This area is located a couple of kilometers from the Grand Theater, which you can walk or take metro line 10. Probably, thanks to its nightlife and the large number of clubs and shops, you will often return to the former French Concession.

For this evening, we propose you to dine at Din Tai Fung, a restaurant specializing in Chinese ravioli, with menus starting from € 14,00 per person.

In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 14,9 km / 3 h 24 min
  • Places visited: Jade Buddha Temple (free offer), Jingan Temple (30,00 CNY, approx € 3,90), former French Concession (free), People's Square (free), Shanghai Museum (free), Grand Theater (only via shows), Xintiandi (free)
  • Shanghai Half Day-Tour French Concession 2-Hour Walking Tour: Shanghai Museum and Xintiandi District
  • Breakfast at 1165 Coffee (Get Directions), Lunch at Lost Heaven Bar (Get Directions), Dinner at Din Tai Fung (Get Directions)

2 day

1 - Morning: Breakfast, Yu Garden, City God Temple

On the morning of the second day, however, we dedicate it to visit of the most important garden in Shanghai and its nearby attractions. First, we have breakfast at the Yu Bar, then we enter the Yu Gardens: it is an area of ​​about 40 hectares of greenery, also called "Garden of Happiness" and which was created by the ancient Ming dynasty. Inside, we can visit the famous Huxinting Tea House, or the Yu Yuan Bazaar. The Garden is open every day from 08:30 to 16:45 and the cost of entry is approximately € 2,00.

Then, just 200 meters away, we find the Temple of the God of the City, which has the characteristic of being dedicated to political figures who have made the history of cities, rather than to divinities. The temple is open daily from 08:30 to 16:30.

2 - Afternoon: Lunch, Shanghai Ocean Aquarium

We have lunch right near the temple, at the Old Street Xishi Bean Curd Mill, which offers typical Chinese cuisine, specializing mainly in noodles.

After regaining our energies, we head towards it Shanghai Ocean Aquarium, on the other side of the river. The aquarium it hosts more than 300 marine species from all continents. It is open every day from 09:00 to 18:00 and the entrance ticket costs around € 18,00.
At the end of the visit, we move to the Bund to end the evening and, therefore, the day.

3 - Evening: Dinner, Bund district

Il Bund is a district that runs along the Huangpu River and is full of clubs, shops and shopping centers. But, walking through the streets of this district, you can also admire the statue of Chen Yi, the first communist mayor of Shanghai, the park and a pedestrian underwater tunnel.

We stop to eat at the Xuan Chinese Restaurant, on the 53rd floor of the Ritz-Carlton hotel. The restaurant offers high quality cuisine, with prices starting from € 50,00 per person.

In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 5,8 km / 1 h 18 min
  • Places visited: Yu Garden (€ 2,00), City God Temple (free), Shanghai Ocean Aquarium (€ 18,00), Bund (free)
  • Evening Tour: The Bund and Chinese Acrobatics Show Afternoon and Evening Tour Yu Yuan and Bund Gardens Half Day Tour
  • Breakfast at Yu Bar (Get Directions), Lunch at Old Street Xishi Bean Curd Mill (Get Directions), Dinner at Xuan Chinese Restaurant (Get Directions)

3 day

1 - Morning: Breakfast, Lujiazui, Shanghai Tower, JinMao Tower, World Financial Center

The third day is dedicated to visiting the modern part of the city. We start with breakfast at Baker & Spice Cafè, a western café, then we enter the Lujiazui district, the financial district of the city, featuring three impressive buildings: the Shanghai Tower, which represents the second tallest skyscraper in the world, the JinMao Tower, which combines modern architecture with ancient Gothic influences, and the Shanghai World Financial Center, one of the tallest skyscrapers in the world, home to numerous prestigious offices.

2 - Afternoon: Lunch, Oriental Pearl Tower, Huangpu River Cruise

We have lunch right near the Shanghai World Financial Center, perhaps in the Din Tai Fung chain, and then we continue towards theOriental Pearl Tower, which is just a ten minute walk away. The tower is the symbol of the city and acts as a broadcaster for nine television channels and ten radio stations.

After admiring the tower, we head towards theWe board the boats on the Huangpu River and take a relaxing cruise on the river, lasting about two hours, admiring the various districts of the New Bund and Pudong, as well as some really interesting suspended places (online from € 80,00).

3 - Evening: Dinner, Binjiang Dadao

At the end of the cruise, we stop for dinner at Haiyi Seafood Restaurant, a typical Chinese cuisine restaurant specializing in fish dishes.

After that, we say goodbye to the city with an evening stroll along Binjiang Dadao, the Shanghai riverfront.

In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 5,9 km / 1 h 22 min
  • Places visited: Lujiazui (free), Shanghai Tower (free), JinMao Tower (free), World Financial Center (free), Oriental Pearl Tower (free), Huangpu River Cruise (from € 80,00), Binjiang Dadao (free)
  • Shanghai: Evening Boat Tour on the Huangpu River
  • Breakfast at Baker & Spice Cafe (Get Directions), Lunch at Din Tai Fung (Get Directions), Dinner at Haiyi Seafood Restaurant (Get Directions)

How much does a weekend in Shanghai cost

Shanghai is a fairly cheap city: both hotels and restaurants are within the average of Italian cities and, many of the attractions we have proposed, are free to enter or have a very low cost. Getting around the city is also really cheap: a night taxi ride, in fact, is on average around € 10,00.

  • Costs to eat: about € 60,00 per day per person, for breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Costs for museums and attractions: about € 35,00 per day per person following the itinerary we suggest (average cost)
  • Transportation: about € 12,00 per person per day, also considering night taxi rides
  • Hotels, accommodation and b & b: from € 40,00 per room per night, for a central hotel, overnight only -
  • Fun: from € 20,00 per person per day, for aperitifs and small snacks
  • Total cost of a weekend in Shanghai: from € 500,00 per person (flights excluded)

Before leaving: useful tips

  • When to go: the best period is spring, characterized by a mild climate, far from the scorching heat of summer and very harsh winter; in spring, moreover, there is more opportunity to attend festivals and cultural events
  • the main airport is Pu Dong International Airport, which is about 30 km from the city center. It is connected to the historic center by taxi (between CYN 200,00 and CYN 300,00, or between € 25,80 and € 38,70) and bus (on average CYN 30,00, about € 3,90) or coach ; from here, it is also possible to reach the heart of the city with the innovative magnetic levitation metro line, which takes only 8 minutes, traveling at a speed of 431km / h (ticket 50,00 CYN, approximately € 6,50).
  • the most suitable district is the Bund, from which you can admire the two souls of the city: on one side, the natural landscape with the river, on the other, the futuristic buildings. Furthermore, the Bund is very central and an excellent starting point for visiting all the attractions - Hotels and b & b from € 40,00 per room
  • Getting around: when it is not possible to move on foot, the subway is highly recommended, which reaches different points of the city at very low costs, a ticket costs between 3,00 CYN and 6,00 CYN costs (from about € 0,40 to € 0,77). The last ride, however, is at 23:30 pm, after this time it is advisable to take a taxi - more info on how to get around Shanghai
  • Local currency: Chinese Yuan (CYN) / € 1,00 = CYN 7,76

Audio Video What to see in Shanghai in 3 days
add a comment of What to see in Shanghai in 3 days
Comment sent successfully! We will review it in the next few hours.