Visit any park in the Shanghai and you will have a glimpse into daily Chinese life. Take a stroll and immerse yourself in the activities around you including dancing, karaoke, badminton, rollerblading, tai chi and qi gong just to name a few. Here’s our round up of the best:

Fuxing Park


Fuxing Park is centrally located and has a maze of ivy-colored archways. Kids will love the wide-open space smack bang in the middle. Perfect for letting them run wild after a spot of shopping or lunch.

Open: 6am-6pm daily
Cost: Free entry
Transportation: Xintiandi Metro Station

See listing for Fuxing Park here.

Xujiahui Park


Lots of grass, a big playground and some water features if you’re into that. It lies at the center of a few different areas too, so it’s convenient for many and there are plenty of restaurants and shopping options in the vicinity.

Open: 24/7
Cost: Free entry
Transportation: Xujiahui Metro Station

See listing for Xujiahui Park here.

Xiangyang Park


Conveniently located off Huaihai Lu, Xiangyang Park is a great place for some peace and quiet after a shopping trip. It has a kids playground and a nice shaded promenade; sit under the trees with a cold drink watching groups dance and sing together. 

Open: 24/7
Cost: Free entry
Transportation: 5 min walk from Shanxi Nan Lu Metro Station

See listing for Xiangyang Park here.

Best of the Rest…

Zhongshan Park


A lake and a bicycle ‘sky rail’ over lotus ponds make Zhongshan Park a family favorite. Kids can jump on one of the amusement rides and join in with kite flyers making the most of the green space. There are various gardens for the parents to explore and plenty of shady spots for a picnic.

Open: 24/7
Cost: Free entry
Transportation: Zhongshan Lu Metro Station

See listing for Zhongshan Park here.

Luxun Park


Luxun Park is one of the most bustling parks in Shanghai. Many Chinese come here to practice ballroom dancing, tai chi or – if you’re lucky – you might catch someone putting on a free opera performance. One of the oldest parks in the city, it has some lush vegetation and plantlife. For another dose of culture, leave the park and take a short walk to Duolun Lu, a pedestrianized boulevard filled with trinket sellers, antique shops and cafes.

Open: 6am-6pm
Cost: Free entry
Transportation: Hongkou Football Stadium Metro Station

See listing for Luxun Park here.

Changfeng Park


Changfeng Park will be a sure hit with the kids. With boating on the lake, go-karting and a huge man-made hill, it’s also home to the Ocean World Aquarium. Relax and set up a picnic in the shady areas or join in with the kite flying or badminton playing. 

Open: 5am-7pm daily
Cost: Free entry (some facility need to be purchased)
Transportation: Changfeng Park Metro Station

See listing for Changfeng Park here.

Shanghai Botanical Gardens


A glorious place to visit in spring and summer when flowers are in bloom. You’ll find a wide range of green expanses plus jungle and desert greenhouses, waterways and magnolia-lined avenues at the Shanghai Botanical Gardens. There’s also an outstanding garden dedicated to the arts of penjing, better known under the Japanese name bonsai. Kids will love the amusement zone, and don’t forget to keep an eye out for the wildlife; you’ll see bees and birds suckle blossoms and fish swimming in ponds. 

Open: 7.30am-6pm daily
Cost: RMB40, kids under 6 years old free
Transportation: Shanghai South Metro Station

See listing for Shanghai Botanical Gardens here.

Century Park


Endless amounts of green space make Century Park the ideal place to go for a picnic or a wander through the tree-lined pathways. You can take a bike or rickshaw around this oasis from the hustle and bustle of the city. Take some beautiful photos in the butterfly garden or rent an electric boat on the lake.

Open: 7am-5pm daily
Cost: Free
Transportation: Century Park Metro Station

See listing for Century Park here.