Shanghai Neighborhood Guide
From the futuristic skyscrapers of Pudong and the neoclassical architecture of the Bund to the ancient temples of Jing’an, Shanghai is a city of diverse neighborhoods. Here’s what you need to know about some of Shanghai’s best neighborhoods.
No visit to Shanghai would be complete without exploring the Bund, the iconic waterfront area, that sits opposite Pudong. Renowned for its colonial-era architecture, the district is now home to trendy hotels, boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, bars, and clubs. Just about every sightseeing tour features a stop here, so come for the views and stay for the lively nightlife scene.
Always bustling with activity, People’s Square is home to several top museums and attractions, including Shanghai Museum, Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Hall, and Shanghai Grand Theatre. Also running through the area is Nanjing Road, the world’s longest shopping district and the city’s premier commercial street.
Formerly an agricultural area, Pudong is now Shanghai’s central business district. It’s home to the city’s tallest and most distinctive skyscrapers, such as Shanghai Tower and Jinmao Tower, which both have observation decks that boast the best city views. Besides sky-high views, Pudong is home to the city’s largest park, luxury shopping, and some great restaurants.
The original walled city of Shanghai lies just south of the Bund and People’s Square, and is a throwback to what Shanghai used to be. As its home to the popular Yuyuan Garden, Yuyuan Bazaar, and the City God Temple, sightseeing tours almost always stop here. The Old Town is the best place to browse bazaars and shops selling everything from food and trinkets to antiques.
Old French Concession
The Old French Concession is one of Shanghai’s most popular areas, and for good reason; it’s characterized by tree-lined streets and a mix of Chinese and European architecture. It’s home to artsy Tianzifang and the polished Xin Tian Di entertainment areas, as well as plenty of hip bars and restaurants, boutiques, galleries, and museums. Popular Fuxing Park and the former residences of Sun Yat-sen and Zhou Enlai can also be found here.
Located north of the Old French Concession, Jing’an combines colonial architecture with high-end malls and high-rise developments. It’s home to some of Shanghai’s top hotels, restaurants, and bars, as well as two of the city’s most famous temples, the Jade Buddha Temple and Jing’an Temple.