25 Facts About Shanghai

A huge proportion of China’s population resides in Shanghai. It’s considered to be Asia’s New York City, and with so many districts, it’s only natural for the city to have an extensive metro service running each day. But before this booming city became China’s cultural and innovation hub, it started out from a humble beginning. Keep on reading to learn 25 facts about Shanghai. 

Fact 1: Shanghai is one of the four municipalities of the People’s Republic of China.

  • The city’s located on the southern estuary of the Yangtze River, and the Huangpu River flows through it.

Fact 2: In 2018, Shanghai’s population reached 24.2 million, making it the most populous city in China.

  • Consequently, it’s also the second most populated city in the world. 

Fact 3: The Port of Shanghai is considered to be the world’s busiest container port.

  • It’s no surprise since Shanghai is a global centre for finance, innovation, and transportation.

Fact 4: Shanghai started out as a humble fishing village and market town.

  • Shanghai grew in the 19th century because of its trade and favourable location. The city was one of five treaty ports forced open to foreign trade after the First Opium War. 

Fact 5: Shanghai served as a battleground between Chinese and Japanese forces.

  • The Battle of Shanghai was fought between the National Revolutionary Army of the Republic of China, and the Imperial Japanese Army of the Empire of Japan, at the beginning of the Second Sino-Japanese War.

Fact 6: The city is known for its architectural designs.

  • Shanghai is home to a number of past and present architectural styles including Art Deco and shikumen. The city is also known for its Lujiazui skyline.

Fact 7: Shanghai hosts several major international and national events each year.

  • This includes the Shanghai Fashion Week, the Chinese Grand Prix, and ChinaJoy.

Fact 8: Shanghai has the most Art Deco buildings in the world. 

  • This was a result of the city’s construction boom during the 1920s and 1930s. One of the most famous architects working in Shanghai was László Hudec, a Hungarian-Slovak who lived in the city between 1918 and 1947.

Fact 9: In March 2013, thousands of pig carcasses were found floating along the city’s Huangpu River. 

  • A few of the pigs had ear tags, implying that the carcasses were from Jiaxing. However, local farmers adamantly denied the allegation. 

Fact 10: Shanghai is known for its sweet cuisine.

  • In fact, the city consumes more sugar than any other part of the country. 

Fact 11: In 1986, the White Magnolia became Shanghai’s official city flower.

  • White Magnolias are among the few flowers that bloom in Shanghai during the spring.   

Fact 12: Between 1937- 1939, around 20,000 Jews flocked to Shanghai to escape the WW2 German concentration camps.

  • 10% of the Jewish immigrants moved on to Australia, Palestine, and the Americas, while the rest of them stayed in Shanghai.

Fact 13: Fuyou Lu Mosque is Shanghai’s largest and most active mosque.

  • It currently has two separate prayer halls for its male and female devotees.  

Fact 14: In 1908, the Shanghai South Railway Station, formerly New Longhua Station, was constructed. 

  • The station underwent an extensive renovation in 2006, giving the station a modern circular look, making it the world’s very first round station.  

Fact 15: The Shanghai Club has a 111-foot long bar.

  • Back in 1910, it was the world’s longest bar, and gaining entry to the bar itself was considered to be a social triumph. 

Fact 16: The city’s name, “Shanghai” means “on the sea”.

  • However, this was deemed a bit inappropriate given the fact that Shanghai is located at the mouth of the Huangpu River.

Fact 17: With a population of 24 million, Shanghai’s population alone is 5x greater than that of New Zealand.

  • Just shy of 4.8 million people lived in New Zeland in 2017. 

Fact 18: Hundreds of Shanghai parents flock to the People’s Square Marriage Market during weekends to find their children suitable partners.

  • Parents of unmarried adults flock to the park every Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. to trade information about their children.

Fact 19: KFC is an extremely popular fast food restaurant in Shanghai. 

  • It’s an American fast food restaurant chain that specializes in fried chicken. It’s also the world’s second-largest restaurant chain after McDonald’s.

Fact 20: Almost anything can be delivered to your doorstep in Shanghai.

  • Whether its pizza, fast food, groceries, chips, and even soda, you really don’t have to leave the comfort of your home. 

Fact 21: Shanghai locals prefer to drink their beverages warm or at room temperature.

  • That includes water and beer, so if you want your drinks served cold, you’ll have to tell the servers beforehand. 

Fact 22: Shanghai’s Pudong International Airport resembles a seagull.

  • It was designed by French architect Paul Andreu.

Fact 23: Standing at 632 meters tall, the Shanghai Tower is the tallest building in the city.

  • In fact, it’s the tallest skyscraper in China. 

Fact 24: Chinese locals, particularly those in Shanghai, consider hairy crabs, or the Chinese mitten crabs, their delicacy. 

  • For two months each year, vendors and restaurants bring out a beloved local delicacy widely enjoyed in the country. Having hairy crabs with sherry wine is the best choice for a late supper. 

Fact 25: You can visit Shanghai for 144 hours without a visa. 

  • This is the equivalent of 6 days.  


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