Shanghai City Layout

As one of the mega-cities in China, Shanghai occupies an area of over 6,300 square kilometers (2,400 square miles) with a population of over 24 million. Shanghai city layout can be divided into two main parts which called Pudong and Puxi by Huangpu River. Shanghai central urban area eventually spread from People’s Square & the Bund.

Shanghai Urban Area

The city now includes 16 districts, which can be divided into 4 parts:
 7 Central Areas: Huangpu, Jing’an, Xuhui, Changning, Yangpu, Hongkou, Putuo
 1 Semi urban & Semi suburb: Pudong New Area
 3 Suburban Areas: Minghang, Baoshan, Jiading
 5 Remote Suburbs: Songjiang, Jinshan, Qingpu, Fengxian, Chongming
Shanghai Layout Map
Shanghai Layout Map - 16 Districts
Guide Map of Downtown Shanghai
Guide Map of Downtown Shanghai

Downtown Landmarks and Area Guide

The Bund in Huangpu District, also called East Zhongshan 1st Road, is located in the west bank of Huangpu River. As an important symbol of the city, it owns 52 buildings in different architectural styles. When night comes and neon lights on, the Bund provides the most beautiful scene of Huangpu River, Oriental Pearl Tower, Jin Mao Tower and World Financial Center. Taking a Huangpu River cruise is the best way to enjoy the modern style of new Shanghai. Besides, the Sightseeing Tunnel connecting the Bund and Oriental Pearl Tower is worth a try!

People's Square – City Center

As one of the landmarks, People’s Square in Huangpu District covers an area of 140,000 square meters (170,000 square yards). Known as ‘Urban Green Lung’, it’s surrounded by many famous attractions nearby: Madame Tussauds Shanghai in the north, Urban Planning Exhibition Hall in the northeast, Shanghai Grand Theatre in the northeast, and Shanghai Museum in the south. The popular Hong Kong Shopping Center is in the underground passage of the square. Visitors can find all kinds of stuffs there like clothes, jewelry, gifts and snacks. People’s Square can be easily accessed by public transportation Metro Line 1, Metro Line 2 and Metro Line 8.
Nanjing Road, Shanghai
Nanjing Road
The Bund, Shanghai
The Bund
 These two in Huangpu District are the two most famous shopping streets according to Shanghai city layout. The known Nanjing Road Pedestrian Street provides many things like clothes, gifts, local snacks, and Chinese handcrafts. As for Huaihai Road, it normally refers to 2,200-meter-long Middle Huaihai Road Commercial Street, which is the section from South Shaanxi Road to South Nanjing Road. Along the street, there are some branded shopping centers like K11, IAPM Mall and Parkson.
 Lujiazui in Pudong New Area, facing the Bund in the other side of Huangpu River, is one of the most renowned financial centers in China, covering many headquarters of multi-national banks. The highest building in China, Shanghai Tower, with the height of 632m (2,073 feet) is also located here. Besides, the 492-meter-high (1,614 feet) Shanghai World Financial Center in Lujiazui is the highest flat-roof building in the world. As an important business area, it also owns grand shopping centers like Super Brand Mall and IFC Mall; for sightseeing, Oriental Pearl Tower, Jin Mao Tower and Ocean Aquarium are suggested.
 As one of downtown landmarks in Shanghai layout, the Old Street in Huangpu District preserves the old banks, jewelry stores, tea houses and drama stages in the city. The street is divided into two sections by Guanyi Street: the east section keeps residential characteristics of the late Qing Dynasty and the early Republic of China; while the west section imitates local residences in Ming and Qing dynasties. Many time-honored shops are still open in this area like Tonghanchun Medicine Store, Old Shanghai Tea House, Chunfeng Deyi Tea House, Wuliangcai Glasses and Deshun Restaurant.

The Old City God Temple is near the Old Street, and this area has developed as a popular shopping place for souvenirs and small wares. The shopping area near the temple and Yuyuan Garden mainly provides local snacks like Nanxiang Steamed Stuffed Bun, stinky tofu, and Crab-Yellow Pastry. Every Lantern Festival, there is a temple fair near the temple. Visitors can not only buy some snacks and handcrafts but also enjoy many folk performances.
Lujiazui Financial and Trade Zone
 Lujiazui Financial and Trade Zone
Yuyuan Garden Area, Shanghai
Yuyuan Garden Area
 Former French Concession, stretching across Huangpu District and Xuhui District, is full of western style houses. When autumn comes, the phoenix tree leaves become the best decoration of these architectures. Many historical and cultural relics are standing in this area, like Former Residence of Sun Yat-sen, Sinan Mansions, and Former Residence of Chow En-Lais. Besides, an art area, Tianzifang is also located in the French concession. Young people can enjoy themselves in the bars, cafes, crafts shops and boutiques providing here.
 Shanghai city layout indicates that Xujiahui Shopping Area in Xuhui District extends to Wanping Road in the east, Yishan Road in the west, and stretches to Guangyuan Road in the north and Linglin Road in the south. It owns many grand shopping malls like Grand Gateway 66, Orient Shopping Center, Pacific Department Store, Huijin Department Store, and Metro City, providing luxuries, middle-high class clothes and foods. Among all kinds of commodities, digital products selling in this area are the most popular ones among customers.

Suburban Layout Guide for Tourists

Shanghai city layout of the suburb tells about the Disneyland Park in Pudong New Area, which is the first one in China. In this theme park, tourists can enjoy the largest Disney castle, the largest Disney parade and the first Pirate-themed Park in the world. Form People’s Square, visitors can take the metro to the park within 1 hour.

Identify and Locate a Road in Shanghai

Nearly all the roads in the city was named regularly. The north-south roads were named after Chinese provinces, and east-west ones named after Chinese cities. The north-south roads include Xizang Road, Henan Road and Guangxi Road; while the east-west ones include Nanjing Road, Fuzhou Road and Yan’an Road. The only exception is east-west Guangdong Road named after Guangdong province. The roads’ names in Chinese are arranged as: province / city name + direction + number + road.
For example, East Zhongshan 1st Road, in Chinese pinyin, is Zhongshan (city name) + Dong (East) + Yi (1st) + Lu (Road).

The followings are Shanghai layout guide about roads in Chinese pinyin and English:


Chinese English Chinese English
Dong East Xi West
Nan South Bei North
Zhong Middle - -


Chinese English Chinese English
Yi 1st  Liu 6th
Er 2nd  Qi 7th
San 3rd  Ba 8th
Si 4th  Jiu 9th
Wu 5th Shi 10th


Chinese English Chinese English
Lu Road Dadao Avenue
Jie Street Nong Lane

- Last updated on Apr. 05, 2021 -
Questions & Answers on Shanghai City Layout
Asked by joe from AUSTRALIA | Jun. 17, 2015 23:00Reply
as a single male on holiday which area is the best to stay in close to restaurants, bars clubs
Answers (1)
Answered by Julie from USA | Jun. 18, 2015 01:25

Well, you can stay at Huangpu District. People's Square and Nanjing Road are located at this area. And there are lots of local restaurants, delicious snacks and entertainment places. In there, you can make friends with many people. Have fun!
Asked by Glenton from SOUTH AFRICA | Feb. 02, 2015 09:13Reply
business areas in Shanghai
I would like to know whether there are any small businesses that are selling any software & hardware goods in & around this city ? I'm coming in the next month & would like to know ?
Thanks for your assistance .
Answers (1)
Answered by Kelly from FRANCE | Feb. 03, 2015 01:50

Hey, highly recommend you go to Shanghai Hi-Tech King World. It is located in no. 668, East Beijing Road, Huangpu District. It’s the best place I know for such products in the city.
Asked by John from USA | May. 19, 2013 10:48Reply
Songjiang in Shanghai
Hello, I will be moving to Songjiang District and was wondering if that is considered a "cool" area to live in? Is there good shopping, bars, and good nightlife there? How long would it take to go to central part of the city? I am a single male and want to live in a fun area of the city!
Answers (3)
Answered by Mia from MALAYSIA | May. 19, 2013 22:49

Songjiang is a perfect place to live.
Shopping and night life is very well there, so please do not worry about it.
To reach the city center area such as the Nanjing Road area, it takes about an hour.
Answered by John from USA | May. 21, 2013 10:57

I see. Thank you very much.
Do you know if Songjiang looks like a city or a suburb? Are there skyscrapers?
Will I need a car or motorbike to get around easily?
Answered by Mia from MALAYSIA | May. 23, 2013 04:57

It looks like a city, although not very prosperous as the SH city downtown. The skyscrapers exist, but only a few exist there.
If you have a car, of course the car is the best method for traveling around. If you do not have one, it is suggested to use the motorbike.
Asked by Vicky from AUSTRIA | Jul. 01, 2011 07:39Reply
Attractions in Minhang District?
I'll be staying at the MingYang Hotel (Minhang District) for a couple of weeks, starting mid-July. I was wondering if there was anything interesting close by.
As I will be staying at the hotel for quite a while, I was wondering whether there were any launderettes I could wash my clothes at, and about the prices.
Also, for the first two weeks, I'll be pretty free, any attractions and/or activities any one could recommended (and that dont cost too much)? Many thanks :)
Answers (2)
Answered by Kevin from CHINA | Jul. 02, 2011 03:26

I think the only attraction in Minxing District worth visiting is Qibao Anciant Town. As for clothing washing, I think the hotel you stay may have such service.
Answered by Mark Butcher | Apr. 05, 2021 21:12

minghan is a huge area - there are lots of things to see - malls to visit and water toens
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