(Last Updated: Apr 1 2018)
Shanghai is my favorite city in the world (tied with San Francisco). I’ve lived there twice in my life, the second time for three years. If you want the absolute best food scene in the whole world (not exaggerating), the craziest nightlife, and a glimpse of what the future will look like, I highly recommend paying a visit, or even better–spending a few months to one year in the city. It’s such a special place to me, so I put together this guide for others to experience a bit of the magic Shanghai showed me. These recommendations lived as a Google Doc for a few years and have been shared with hundreds of friends and Airbnb guests–so I’m glad they’re now a bit more accessible to those venturing to China!
Shanghai changes super quickly, so it’s highly likely that places listed here will be closed or renovating. If this is a case, please do me a huge favor and leave a comment so I can keep the list up-to-date for other travelers.