By Megan Schwartz, ISA China Site Specialist
1) Visit the Bund
The Bund is the heart of Shanghai. Located in the center of the city on the banks of the Huangpu River, the area has been a symbol of Shanghai for hundreds of years. Visitors walking up and down the promenade can check out various sculptures and monuments, grab a snack at one of the cafes or restaurants, stop in one of the museums or galleries, and take in the awesome and diverse architecture that stands to the west.
What shouldn’t (and really can’t) be missed is the exceptional view to the east. Across the Huangpu River is the view of the future-esque Pudong skyscrapers. Make sure to come back after dark to explore the nearby nightlife and take in the view of the buildings after they’ve been illuminated.
2) Attend a Chinese Cooking Class
Food is a massive part of culture, so naturally, a great way to dive into the culture of Shanghai is by learning to make some of the local cuisine. By attending a cooking class, visitors can get hands-on experience making dishes such as xiaolongbao, dumplings, Shanghai noodles, dim sum, stir fried string beans, garlic eggplant, and of course, desserts.
3) Release your Inner Singer at KTV
In Shanghai, karaoke is a pastime enjoyed by all ages, and KTV (short for “Karaoke Television”) is a popular activity throughout the city. While western karaoke typically involves singing in a public venue in front of strangers, KTV in Shanghai allows visitors and their friends to gather in a private room- adorned with flashy lights and comfortable sofas- to spend the evening belting out their favorite songs without the awkwardness and pressure of singing in public. KTV establishments can have thousands of songs to choose from, so participants can select anything from “Bohemian Rhapsody” to “Oops… I Did it Again” to “Friends in Low Places”. Those who are feeling particularly brave can even try their hand at Chinese opera!