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Beijing or Shanghai???

Travel Forums Asia Beijing or Shanghai???

1. Posted by lwk198 (Budding Member 15 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hi guys

To cut a long story short, I've got a choice between spending a couple of months living in either Beijing or Shanghai. Which city do you think I should choose? If you've only been to 1 of the 2 cities then please let me know your impressions of that city. All responses will be greatly appreciated!



2. Posted by focustour (Budding Member 11 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Beijing seems better, very relax and more oriental.

3. Posted by aharrold45 (Travel Guru 1281 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I have only been to Beijing out of the two and going by the pictures and videos I have seen on Shanghai, I reckon that if you are wanting a New York type experience in China then Shanghai would be the place, but if you want to truly experience the real China then Beijing would probably be best. Beijing had plenty of great stuff to check out in the city and within a day trip you can see the Great Wall of China doing one of the best hikes which should not be missed by anyone going to China, from Jinshaling-Simatai sections of the wall. You had a mixture of new with a blend of the old, but I was there in 2005 and at that time they were repairing a lot of old buildings in the poorer regions (probably because of the olympic games which are there next year). I'm sure which ever one of the cities you decide on you'll be able to have a good time.

[ Edit: Edited on May 7, 2007, at 4:56 AM by aharrold45 ]

4. Posted by worldwideG (Respected Member 117 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

hi laurie, i visited both last year. there is much more to see and do in beijing compared to shanghai. you have the forbidden city, temple of heaven, summer palace, beijing acrobats, tiannamen square to name the most popular attractions and the great wall is a few hours away. shanghai has a more cosmopolitan feel to it in my view and has good nightlife but lacks the attractions. it depends on what you want to do in your time there. you could live in shanghai and travel up to beijing for a week of sightseeing. hope this helps, pete

5. Posted by annavict82 (Budding Member 47 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hi Laurie!

Firstly can i say how envious i am of you doing this!! I went to china 2005 and had the best time of my life! it totally rocks out there. I stayed about 6 days in Shanghai and a month in Beijing. For me Beijing wins hands down. Although Shanghai is a lot more cosmopolitan in its feel and certainly the most westernised place I went to Beijing has more atmosphere and more sights to see. It is also a great base to get to the great wall from for even just a day trip, a sight not to be missed and very cheap to get to. The forbidden city is also amazing to see, so big and impressive. Tianamen Square also a landmark not to miss. I thought the nightlife in Beijing was awesome, cheap clubs (also if a rave is your thing there are some awesome raves in the countryside surrounding beijing!!), good music (in some places at least!!) and really friendly people. The traffic is nuts, but its easy to get around on the train system and taxis are cheap too. So all in all I would say if u have a chance to get to both then do it even if you go to one for just a weekend but beijing is full of culture that you just wouldnt necessarily get in Shanghai. Hope this helps. Have a wicked time!! Anna :)

6. Posted by citybell (Full Member 419 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Had been to both Beijing and Shanghai many time though my work takes me to Shanghai more number of times, the last one being during nov-Dec2006.

If you wish to feel chnese culture and visit historic monuments, then Beijing would be better. Shanghai is more cosmopolitan and more commercial in nature.Ofcourse Shanghai has its own beauty.

Suggest you stay in one place and make a week end or holiday trips to another city.The transportation between these two cities are excellent.

7. Posted by kirk1978 (Budding Member 12 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I am agree with Citybell here.
I was in Shanghai for 3 weeks for work reason. and I took a weekend off and head to Beijing.
now, I do have the luxery that i know someone from Beijing to travel with. so i can "compress" lot of the sight seeing place into one weekend time.

but if you are not travelling for work, or in other word, weekday is same as weekend, then i say stop by the other city for half a week to a week.

personally, i think for "living", Shanghai is slightly better.
to my impression, Beijing is the capital and a traveller spot.
lot of sight seeing and lot of people visiting. but after visiting all those place, it become kinda dry for "living" there.
however, Shanghai, due to lot of foreign business are happening there, many foreign business people are travelling back and forth, or even staying for few months. the city become more "long term" friendly.

8. Posted by opospa (Travel Guru 1837 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

you like history?
if you like history and more relaxation,maybe you can choose beijing although it is a busy city.
if you like modern lifestyle,you can go to shanghai.It is much modern and bigger than beijing.