Facts about Shanghai

We found 30 facts about Shanghai

The Paris of the East

Shanghai is the most eclectic city in China. It combines various architectural styles and is known as the Chinese center of Art Deco. Developing at a very fast rate, it is a crown jewel of Eastern Asia.

It is the world’s third largest city.
Its current population exceeds 28 million inhabitants. Only Tokyo, Japan, and Delhi, India, precede Shanghai in terms of population, with 37 million and 32 million, respectively.
Shanghai means “on the sea.”
It is an appropriate name, considering that Shanghai is located at the mouth of the Huangpu River.
It is located in the estuary of the Yangtze River.
One of the Yangtze man-made tributaries, the Huangpu River, flows through the city.
Shanghai started as a fishing village, then developed into a market town in the 12th century.
The first inhabitants of Shanghai settled in the western part of the city 6,000 years ago.
The true development of the city, however, started in the 19th century, thanks to international and domestic trade because of the First Opium War (1839-1842).
The climate in Shanghai is humid subtropical, with a distinguished four seasons, and an average temperature of 15,5 degrees Celsius.
It is one of the four province-level municipalities of China, along with Beijing, Chongqing, and Tianjin.
Shanghai was a ground for a Japanese invasion in 1932.
Over 18,000 people were killed, injured, or declared missing, and the Zhabei district completely destroyed.
The city of Shanghai participated in the Second Sino-Japanese War.
The first engagement of the Second Sino-Japanese War took place in 1937 and is called the Battle of Shanghai. It is regarded as the bloodiest battle of the war, often referred to as the “Stalingrad on the Yangtze.” Some historians claim it was the starting point of World War II.
It has its own dialect.
Shanghainese is so distinctive from Chinese that most people from around the country cannot understand it.
While most people in China do not speak English, most inhabitants of Shanghai know at least the basics.
English is taught at schools in Shanghai since the first grade.
It is one of the world’s major business, financial and economical centers.
Shanghai is ranked the fifth city in the world by the number of Fortune Global 500 companies.
Its official city flower is White Yulan.
It belongs to the genus magnolia, native to China. It grows in the Yangtze River basin.
The bus system in Shanghai is the world’s most extensive.
There are over 1,000 bus lines throughout the city.
Shanghai metro system is the largest in the world.
Currently, it has 802 kilometers of track.
The first Maglev railway was opened in Shanghai in 2002.
It is the fastest commercial train in the world. It reaches a top speed of 430 kph.
Shanghai Port is the busiest container port in the world.
Shanghai’s signature savory dish is xiaolongbao.
Invented back in 1875, they are dumplings typically filled with pork, and with added meat aspic that melts into soup during steaming.
The main ingredient of Shanghai cuisine is sugar.
It is known as a “sweet tooth” city. Sugar is the basic ingredient of various sauces, thus overall, dishes eaten in Shanghai are considered the sweetest in China.
Shanghai’s signature dessert is the Tangyuan.
It is a hot soup with ball-shaped rice dumplings filled with black sesame.
Apart from traditional cuisine, the people of Shanghai love KFC.
The first KFC opened in 1989 and has continuously been one of the most popular fast-food restaurants in the city.
Shanghai is famous for Art Deco architecture.
Art Deco, a style of architecture, visual arts, and product design, originated in the 1910s in France and spread worldwide within the next two decades. It made its way to the Middle Kingdom (a name derived from the native name of China–Zhongguo) and was incorporated into the local architecture style. Currently, the entire city represents an eclectic architectural style, combining modernism with Chinese deco.

The most notable Art Deco buildings in the city are the Park Hotel, the Broadway Mansions, and the Grand Cinema.
The most traditional architectural style in Shanghai is called Shikumen.
It is depicted by two or three-story structures, resembling terrace- or town-houses, popular in Europe and North America.
The eclectic architecture in Shanghai consists also of Socialists Classicism, also known as Stalinist architecture.
The most notable buildings are the Shanghai Exhibition Center, Shanghai Museum, and the Shanghai Grand Theater.
The tallest skyscraper in China is located in Shanghai.
The Shanghai Tower, which is 632 meters high, was opened in 2017. Currently, it is the third tallest building in the world, surpassed by Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and Merdeka 118 in Malaysia. It has the world’s highest observation deck, located at 562 meters.
In late 2022 Shanghai will open the world’s largest indoor ski resort.
Wintastar Shanghai is a complex of indoor ski slopes, a waterpark, and a hotel. It will cover an area of 227,000 square meters, with 90,000 square meters of slopes.
Shanghai has its own Disney Resort.
It is 11 times larger than the original park located in Anaheim, California. At the same time, it is the second largest theme park, surpassed by the Magic Kingdom Theme Park at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. During construction, over 1,200 graves had to be relocated, which was compensated with $43 per family.
Disneyland operates since 2016 and greatly contributes to the city’s tourism.
Tourism generates over 14% of the city’s GDP. Annually, Shanghai is visited by over four million tourists.
Shanghai holds the largest marriage market in the country.
Every weekend from noon to 5 p.m. parents of unmarried adults gather at People’s Park and exchange information on potential partners. The first marriage market was held in 2004 in Beijing, and since then parents eager to marry off their adult sons and daughters gather in the parks of major cities across China.
Shanghai experienced a large outbreak of Covid-19 in early 2022, leading to a lockdown of the entire city from April 5th to June 1st.
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