A Weekend in Shanghai – Lenka’s Story

A Weekend in Shanghai

A Weekend in Shanghai - Enjoying local Chinese food
A Weekend in Shanghai – Enjoying local Chinese food

This is Lenka’s Weekend in Shanghai story. She started her China journey in September 2018 when she came to Beijing with her daughter, Tereza.


They’re both staying at an LTL Chinese Homestay family for their four month stay. Tereza is taking a full time language course. Read more to find out Lenka’s top tips for a weekend trip to Shanghai… 

Are you studying in LTL Beijing?

Why not save up some free time, and plan yourself a weekend in Shanghai?! This city will definitely win your heart!

But how do you get to Shanghai?

Where should you stay?

And what is there to do and see if you’re there for two days? Just follow our brief Shanghai weekend guide

Chapter 1 – Train beats Plane

Chapter 2 – Where to stay

Chapter 3 – Day 1: Friday, Friday

Chapter 4 – Day 2: The Best View

Chapter 5 – Day 3: A Touch of Ancient China

Before diving into this great weekend schedule, come and see our video about what makes Shanghai famous, from the perspective of some friends we made 🙂

High Speed Train – Better Than a Plane!

The fast train (高铁)
The fast train (高铁)

More than 1,200 km away, but take the high speed train from Beijing to Shanghai and, you only need 4 hours 28 minutes.

I’d recommend buying the tickets several days in advance, to make sure you can get the day and time you want. For buying the tickets you can either purchase online, or go straight to Beijing South Railway Station and get the tickets there.

The latter option is not too difficult to do and is a great opportunity to practise your Chinese.

You can also give yourself a head start, finding your way to and around the station, so you can save time on the day of your departure.

A return ticket from Beijing to Shanghai is 1116 CNY.

One Important Note: don’t forget to take your passport with you! Both when you buy the ticket and when you go to take the train. Without it, it isn’t possible to buy a ticket or board the train. 

A Weekend in Shanghai – The Bund or Pudong? Where to stay?

Do you believe in love at first sight?

If you don’t, you definitely will do if you book accommodation close to Bund in Shanghai.

What could be better then a welcome night view of the shining skyscrapers, colourful lights and Oriental Pearl Tower, a relaxing walk along the river, feeling like … Stop, book your room right now! Close to Bund!


A Weekend in Shanghai Day 1: Friday, Friday!

A Weekend in Shanghai - Daytime Bund walk
A Weekend in Shanghai – Daytime Bund walk

If you take an early afternoon train on the Friday, you will arrive in Shanghai at around 7 pm. 

En route you will pass through cities as well as getting views of China’s countryside.

By the time it is getting dark and lights are turning on inside houses, you will begin to see the first skyscrapers, colourful neon lights… it is clear that you are so almost there!

When you arrive you could take a taxi from the railway station to Nanjing Road for around 200 CNY.

Alternatively, a cheaper option for those on a budget, you could take the subway for just 10 CNY (no changes either).

So here we are! Close to the Bund.

Once you’ve dropped off your luggage at your hotel, you can head out to enjoy your first experience of the city.

Take a stroll along the bund, and just watch the panorama, the people walking around, feel the atmosphere. And if it is still warm enough, buy some snacks and a couple of bottles of beer, take a seat on the steps and have yourself a picnic.

You made it to Shanghai, have fun!

A Weekend in Shanghai Day 2: The Best View!

Shanghai by night: View from Pudong over to the Bund
Shanghai by night: View from Pudong over to the Bund

Day two instructions (trust us): walk to the pier and take a boat across the river.

It leaves every half hour and costs just 2 CNY (really! Just 2 CNY).

After about 10 minutes, you are on the other side. You’ll now be in Pudong, the business district.

Just 20 years ago, this areas was just fields and swamps. And now? Time for a breath-taking view!

Where better than to watch the city from the highest one. The Shanghai World Financial Centre, the second tallest building in the world.

Don’t miss it!

The admission fee is 120 CNY or 80 CNY for students.

Did you enjoy the view? Now, time for a walk.

You can head over to the Oriental Pearl Tower, enjoy the river from the side, grab a bite to eat, or do a spot of shopping in one of the countless nearby malls.

There is so much to see, that time will fly by before you know it… but don’t worry the ferry back over to the Bund side of the river runs until late evening. Enjoy the night view from this vantage point before you head back.


A Weekend in Shanghai Day 3: A Touch of Ancient China

Old Shanghai
Old Shanghai

Day 3: And we’re taking a trip back in time. Old Shanghai awaits us!

The journey will depend on where exactly you are staying, but if you took our advice and are close to the Bund, you’ll be able travel on foot as it is not too far to reach Shanghai Old Street (historically called Miaoqian Dajie).

Walking through the streets in this part of the city will most definitely make you feel like you are in Europe.

The building, the trees – a mixture of Paris and London perhaps?

More and more people as you walk, almost there… Old Shanghai! Avoid the tourists, souvenir shops, and sneaky Starbucks on every corner. Instead focus on the ladies in colourful dresses with high combed hair, old tea houses, and beautiful calligraphy.

This is the right place to a piece of Ancient China. The China you recognise from films and books; this is it.

Don’t miss out on seeing the Yu Gardens, they are absolutely amazing.

Had enough of the history? Why not go to Nanjing Road? There is a Pedestrian Zone with lots of shops and restaurants… the street will really take you back to Europe again… perhaps Oxford Street?

A Weekend in Shanghai - One of the most mind-blowing skylines in the World : The Bund
A Weekend in Shanghai – One of the most mind-blowing skylines in the World : The Bund

And what next?

Sadly it is already time to pick up your suitcase and take the subway. It is time to go home, and LTL Beijing awaits you tomorrow morning.

If you take the high speed train again at 6pm, you will be in Beijing to take the subway back to wherever you need to. Back to school on Monday morning… are you already planning to study at LTL Shanghai next time round?

No wonder…

Thank you so much Lenka for putting down in words your fantastic weekend in Shanghai for our blog. Don’t forget to check our Lenka’s earlier blogs on her homestay experience and trip to the hospital too You can also find many more student stories on our blog and review page. Lenka also helps us blogging on our Czech website!

If you got this far you are probably keen to see more of Shanghai, fear not good friend

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