Shanghai Travel Guide

China  #15 in Best Places to Visit in Asia
Credit

Courtesy of zorazhuang/Getty Images/iStockphoto

What to Eat in Shanghai

The best way to navigate Shanghai's robust dining scene is to start in the streets. The city is considered a mecca for its vast and delectable street food. Here, you'll find a menagerie of classic Chinese fare for a fraction of the price (some sit-down restaurants tack on a 10 to 15 percent service charge). Xiaolongbao, or pork soup dumplings, are as traditional as you can get. Eight of these can easily set you back as little as 4 yuan ($0.60), and if you're wondering where the soup is, just take a bite. Noodles are also abundant and come in a wide variety of flavors and styles. Cond you ban mian noodles, or scallion oil noodles, are a simple, traditional noodle dish featuring soy sauce, fried scallions and shrimp. There's also Liang pi, or cold jelly noodles typically mixed with sesame sauce, vinegar, chili oil and toasted peanuts. Those with an adventurous palate should seek out yaxue fensi tang, a hearty duck soup featuring duck blood and its entrails, and shansi leng mian, noodles mixed with eel.

But if you were to pick one meal to have on the street alone, it should be breakfast. Some of Shanghai's most lauded street food is served only for breakfast. Ci fan taun is by far one of the most popular dishes. Typically eaten for breakfast, ci fan taun is a rice ball stuffed with you tiao (a fried breadstick), chopped pickles, dried pork floss and sometimes ham and eggs. Jian bing is another popular breakfast option, with lines typically starting at 6 a.m. at some stalls. Jian bing are Chinese crepes made with a host of sauces, stuffed with dough, wonton skin or tofu and topped with eggs, pickled greens, scallions and cilantro. There's also cong you bing, or scallion pancakes.

Those who want to sit will find that Shanghai's restaurants are just as top notch as its street food. Fu 1088 is seen as one of the city's best restaurants. Housed in a 1930s Spanish villa-style house, Fu 1088 serves fine Shanghai-French fusion fare. Peace Mansion is another upscale option that serves Chinese and Western dishes including French, modern Shanghainese and Cantonese. The property also features a beautiful garden outfitted with centuries-old trees, perfect for tea time.

Tea is an important part of Chinese hospitality and a recommended means of cultural immersion. In Shanghai, visitors can find many teahouses as well as restaurants and hotels that host afternoon tea. It's important to note that tea, like wine, should not be poured all the way to the top of the glass. And if you're using chopsticks, know that there are etiquette rules to follow as well. Do not stick your chopsticks upright in your bowl, but rather keep them together and place them across the bowl, or horizontally on your plate.

Find the Best Restaurants in Shanghai

  • #1
    Aura Lounge & Jazz Bar (The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai Pudong)
    #1 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1137 reviewsTripAdvisor (1137)
    $$ | Bar, European, Pub
    52/F, The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai Pudong, Shanghai ifc, No.8 Century Avenue, Lujiazui, Pudong, Shanghai 200120 China
    Read More »
  • #2
    Jin Xuan Chinese Restaurant (The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong)
    #2 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 932 reviewsTripAdvisor (932)
    $$ | Chinese, Asian
    PudongShanghai ifc mall, No.8 Century Avenue, Lujiazui, Pudong 53 Floor, The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Pudong, Shanghai 200120 China
    Read More »
  • #3
    Flair Rooftop
    #3 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1835 reviewsTripAdvisor (1835)
    $$ | Japanese, Bar, Asian
    58F, The Ritz Carlton Shanghai, Pudong, No. 8 Century Avenue, Lujiazui, Pudong, Shanghai 200120 China
    Read More »
  • #4
    Club Room (The Shanghai EDITION)
    #4 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 87 reviewsTripAdvisor (87)
    $ - $$ | Bar, Pub, Wine Bar
    199 Nanjing Road East 5F, The Shanghai EDITION, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #5
    Scena (The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai Pudong)
    #5 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1211 reviewsTripAdvisor (1211)
    $$ | Italian, European
    52/F, The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai Pudong, Shanghai ifc, No.8 Century Avenue, Lujiazui, Pudong, Shanghai 200120 China
    Read More »
  • #6
    Shanghai Tavern (The Shanghai EDITION)
    #6 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 107 reviewsTripAdvisor (107)
    $$ | European
    No.199 Nanjing Road East 1F, The Edition, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #7
    Wow Cafe & Bar
    #7 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 134 reviewsTripAdvisor (134)
    $ - $$ | Cafe, Brew Pub, Latin, Bar
    No.19 Shaoxing Road, Luwan District Across from Shaoxing Park, Shanghai 200020 China
    Read More »
  • #8
    Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet
    #8 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 212 reviewsTripAdvisor (212)
    $$ | European, Contemporary
    Somewhere in Shanghai, Shanghai 200070 China
    Read More »
  • #9
    Salon de Ville at Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund
    #9 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 211 reviewsTripAdvisor (211)
    $$ | European, International
    No. 2 Zhong Shan Dong Yi Road Waldorf Astoria Club Lobby Huang Pu District, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #10
    HIYA Japanese Restaurant (The Shanghai Edition)
    #10 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 120 reviewsTripAdvisor (120)
    $$ | Japanese, Diner, Asian
    199 Nanjing Road East 27F, The Shanghai Edition, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #11
    Canton Disco (The Shanghai EDITION)
    #11 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 154 reviewsTripAdvisor (154)
    $$ | Chinese, Asian
    199 Nanjing Road East 2F, The Shanghai EDITION, near Henan Zhong Lu, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #12
    The MEAT
    #12 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 331 reviewsTripAdvisor (331)
    $$ | Steakhouse, American, Seafood, Grill
    No.1388 Huamu Road Kerry Hotel, Pudong, China, Shanghai 201204 China
    Read More »
  • #13
    Efes Restaurant Turkish & Mediterranean Cuisine
    #13 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1080 reviewsTripAdvisor (1080)
    $ - $$ | Pizza, Barbecue, Mediterranean, Turkish, Middle Eastern
    1 Floor, Block B, No. 665 Shang Cheng Road, Lujiazui 1885 Culture Center, Lujiazui, Pudong New Area Metro Line 2 Dong Chang Road Station Exit 3 , Metro Line 9 Shang Cheng Road Exit 2, Shanghai 200122 China
    Read More »
  • #14
    Long Bar at Waldorf Astoria Shanghai on the Bund
    #14 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 540 reviewsTripAdvisor (540)
    $$ | Seafood, Bar, International
    No. 2 Zhong Shan Dong Yi Road Waldorf Astoria Club Lobby Huang Pu District, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #15
    Atto Primo
    #15 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 402 reviewsTripAdvisor (402)
    $$ | Italian, Pizza, Mediterranean, European
    2/F, No.20 Guangdong Road, No.5 the Bund, Luwan District, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »
  • #16
    Sky Dome Bar
    #16 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 214 reviewsTripAdvisor (214)
    $ - $$ | Bar, Pub, International
    47/F, Radisson Blu Hotel Shanghai New World, No.88 Nanjing West Road, Huangpu Road, Shanghai China
    Read More »
  • #17
    Epicure on 45
    #17 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 548 reviewsTripAdvisor (548)
    $$ | European, International
    88 Nanjing Road (W), Shanghai, China Radisson Blu Hotel Shanghai New World, Shanghai 200003 China
    Read More »
  • #18
    Windows on the Park
    #18 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 158 reviewsTripAdvisor (158)
    $ - $$ | European
    1/F, No.88 Nanjing West Road Huangpu, Shanghai China
    Read More »
  • #19
    Goodfellas
    #19 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1490 reviewsTripAdvisor (1490)
    $ - $$ | Italian, Pizza, European
    Waitan, No.7 Yan'an East Road, Huangpu District, Shanghai China
    Read More »
  • #20
    The Fellas
    #20 of 17,981 Places to Eat in Shanghai
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 374 reviewsTripAdvisor (374)
    $ - $$ | Italian, Bar, Pizza, Mediterranean, European
    7/F, No.7 Yan'an East Road, Huangpu District At the Bund, Shanghai 200002 China
    Read More »

Explore More of Shanghai

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