This city of 19 million can be a little daunting to navigate at first, but if you keep an eye out for speeding mopeds and bicyclists on sidewalks and you should be well on your way. Once you’ve gotten used to the pace of the city, you should figure out which districts you’d like to explore. Whether you arrive in the general area via Shanghai’s easy-to-navigate subway or via cab, you’re best exploring from there on foot. There were a couple resources I found helpful and/or interesting:
Lonely Planet China Overview
Lonely Planet Shanghai
City Weekend – published twice a month for the expat crowd, this gives a fairly comprehensive overview of events and happenings around the city.
Smart Shanghai – also geared towards expats; the website has helpful interactive maps along with restaurant reviews, event listings and articles.
Jamie Sinz Asia blog
Ron Gluckman, Roving Reporter
Note, however, these generally lean towards foreigner-friendly recommendations especially related to food. If you really want to experience Shanghainese cuisine, you’re best off seeking out a local friend to guide you towards the best restaurants that might not have made it into the guidebooks.
Having something custom-tailored in Shanghai is a real treat. If you plan ahead, you can bring your own fabric along with you. Otherwise, you’ll be able to find a wide selection of fabrics all around the city including at Shanghai’s famous Fabric Market.
Right away you’ll notice the number of public and private parks around the city. You’ll find people doing tai chi as well as public exercise equipment (open to all, but mostly used by seniors).