From the 1920s through to today, you’re getting it all on this Shanghai street tour that shows off the city’s history, culture, food, and daily local life.
Your Shanghai tour will start with a view of the historic city cathedral, which was spared during both WWII and China’s Cultural Revolution and used as a factory in the interim. From there, we’ll head into the city’s abandoned nong tangs (Shanghai’s sister version of Beijing’s hutongs) — decaying, quiet narrow streets and alleys, full of propaganda posters. Spot the signs referring to Japanese war crimes, and rants against the menace from the East, as well as posters showcasing classic Shanghai stage and screen celebrities.
We’ll get way lost in the labyrinthine nong tangs, weaving around the lanes of back alleys where tourists don’t tread and Chinese life goes on in the backstage of Shanghai. Stroll past carpenters and craftsmen, and see the trash collectors and street sweepers who creep by. You might even spy the odd mahjong game, China’s classic pastime and an old staple of local entertainment. We’ll also get down and dirty in the outdoor market, browsing for fish and food, and seeing capitalism in action in a China that has moved away from Mao.
Next, we’ll hit our hunger at a famous pan-fried dumpling establishment of Shanghai street food, and grab some sheng jian (pan-fried soup dumplings filled with your choice of pork, wild vegetables, or spicy crawfish and shrimp).
We’ll then head into the 1930s, and check out art deco hotels like the prestigious Park Hotel and Shanghai Sports Bureau as we head toward the Champs Elysee of Shanghai, Nanjing. On Saturdays and Sundays, we'll also stop and try our luck at the “marriage market” in People’s Square Park, where parents hope to find mates for their children.
Once at Nanjing Lu, we’ll see the postcard-like view of the buildings, blazing neon signs, riverfront, and the massive skyscrapers that have become emblematic of the new China. We’ll snake our way through the backstreets, check out different types of street food, and visit a street stall selling old books by the weight. We’ll also visit the Peace Hotel at the water’s edge — a classic stately structure representative of the city’s birth.
We’ll end our Shanghai tour with an epic view of the towering monster monoliths of futuristic Pudong. We’ll grab a refreshing beer over at the old pub next to the grand buildings and embassies on the Bund — our tour and time warp complete!
Inclusions: Local English-speaking guide, dumpling snack.
Exclusions: Additional food and drinks, souvenirs and items of a personal nature, tips/gratuities for your guide.
Your Trip: For your Urban Adventure you will be in a small group of a maximum of 12 people.
Confirmation of booking: If you have your voucher, your booking is confirmed. We'll see you at the start point. Get in touch if you have any concerns or require more information via the email address or phone number (business hours only) on your voucher.
Closure of sites: Note that while this tour runs daily, the marriage market only operates on Saturdays and Sundays. On weekday departures, you'll still learn about the market but won't see it in action.
Child Policy: Children between the ages of 6 and 11 inclusively are permitted on this tour at the rate listed above. Please select ‘child’ above when booking. Children below the age of 6 are not permitted on this tour.