Shanghai's zoos and aquariums offer more than expected in the way of exotic animals and sea creatures, exhibits and information in multiple languages.
Start off by heading to the Shanghai Zoo, the largest zoo in the area and home to thousands of creatures. Here you'll be surrounded by nature, both flora and fauna, and escape the smog and pollution of China's most populated city.
Next, head to the Shanghai Ocean Aquarium. A city on the ocean, Shanghai is the largest port in the world, catering to shipping companies, ferries and cruises alike, as well as fishing vessels and a sundry other boats. As such, its position of expertise on the waters is reflected in the aquarium's breadth of exhibits and underwater life.
Similarly, Aquaria 21 is a private institution with a great series of underwater exhibits, including a breakdown of life under the waves broken down into the 7 seas, rivers and lakes-- teaching children the difference between the environments and the life they hold.
The Wild Animal Park is a great place for a Shanghai safari, where you'll be able to sample the life around Shanghai in close proximity. For even closer proximity, the Bird and Flower Market in Shanghai offers the chance to purchase your own lucky cricket, cats, bird, dogs and rodents. Especially popular are insects and birds, some as food and others as beloved pets.
If you want your nature and animals tame, head to the park to see dozens of dogs, cats and other domestic animals or fresh-water coy. Dongping National Forest Park and Zhongzan Park are great places to get respite from the city, delve into nature and even see a few animals and underwater life.
If you want to see the plans for Shanghai's future, the Urban Planning Hall offers a glimpse into the go-green plans for the city, including an entirely green island. See how China's growth will effect the wildlife and sea life nearby.
To learn how it was effected in the past, check out the Natural History and Bun Museums, both of which focus on the area and the rise and fall of different species and habitats.
2381 Hong Qiao Road
No. 1388 Lujiazui Ring Road
Pudong New Area
300 species of sea life from around the world, a must-see for children... read more
451 Daduhe Road
Gate 4, Changfeng Park
Observe the ocean's depths in this modern coastal Shanghai aquarium... read more
178 Nan Liu Highway
Nan Hui, San Zao Zhen
Jiangyin Lu, off Huangpi Lu
Fresh flowers, fish, pets and plants for sale at great prices... read more
Dong Ping Lin Square
Zhongzan Park, Changning District
A beautiful park with ponds and entertainment...
Renmin Da Dao 100
Huangpu (northeast of the Shanghai Museum; entrance on east side)
The perfect place to grab a sneak peak at the government's plans for Shanghai's illustrious future... read more
1A Zhong Shan East Road
Yan'an Dong Lu 260
Huangpu (at Henan Nan Lu)