Have a lazy weekend coming up but don't want to bother planning a weekend trip? Has the warm weather inspired you to get outside and get active but you don't know where to start? Rest assured that there are some great – and rather unusual – all day activities available for those who want a break from the usual grind but who aren't quite ready for a two day commitment. Whether it is exploring Shanghai in a totally new way or heading outside the city limits for a day long excursion, check out these trips that will set you back less than 24 hours – perfect for recharging you for the work week ahead…
1) Go Horseback Riding in the Country
Horseback riding can prove extremely relaxing and a great way to escape the craziness of the city, regardless of whether or not you're an experienced rider. Qingqing Riding Club in Songjiang provides both indoor and outdoor lessons and is ideal for those wanting to establish or improve their skills. Be warned upfront, though, that the 180 RMB for three hours of riding that is advertised on their website is not available for foreigners (Chinese locals only). As their pricing system is rather complicated, it is better to call in order to explain exactly what type of experience you're looking for.
Yejo tour group, on the other hand, offers an all-day outdoor trail riding package that is less lesson-based and more "wild riding" (ie: after a brief coverage of the basics, an instructor accompanies you as you walk the trails). For 449 RMB, you receive a bus transfer to and from the pickup point in Shanghai, park entry, two 1 ½ hour riding sessions, Mongolian style lunch, drinking water, and instructions. Expect to be gone from around 8:00am until 6:30pm.
Yejo Tour Group
2) Take a Bike Tour around the City
Whether you just moved here and are interested in getting to know your surroundings a bit better or you're a Shanghai old-timer, bike tours around the city are a fun way to discover hidden gems in the midst of the ordinary. China Cycle Tours offer four one-day bike tours, including "Shanghai Classic," "Old Shanghai Discovery," "Jewish Nostalgic," and "Chinese Massage." 850 RMB (for 1-2 people) includes tour guide, entry fees (where applicable), bike and helmet, ferry boat ticket (where applicable), and lunch. If you'd rather skip the touristy gimmicks (and really, who wouldn't?), check out one of Shanghai's bike groups, like Factory Five, who regularly go on night rides and extended jaunts on the weekends. You won't get a guided tour, but you'll see the city via bike and meet some great new people – and it's free.
China Cycle Tours
Bike tour with BOHDI Adventures. Photo: flickr.com
3) Go Hiking Through Mountains
BOHDI Adventures offer half day and full day hiking (and biking) trips in various cities bordering Shanghai, including Zhujiajiao (an ancient water town) and Dongshan East Mountain. Prices range from 1,500 RMB upwards, depending on the location and time spent (ie: half day, weekend trip, etc.), and typically include accommodations (if applicable), lunch, and transportation. The Shanghai Outing Club (formerly known as the Shanghai Weekend Oasis Club) holds similar trips on a one to two day basis with the aim of escaping the "concrete jungle" and getting back to nature. While it's probable that you can organise and book such outings yourself (or with a group of friends), clubs like this aim to take the hassle out of planning and let you just enjoy the adventure.
The Shanghai Outing ClubView In Map
Add: 1399 Beijing Xi Lu, Xinda Building 9 Floor, Unit F, near Changde Lu
Tel: 021 5187 0545
5) Ride Roller Coasters at an Amusement Park
With the eventual arrival of Disneyland Shanghai, expect to see interest in amusement parks rise exponentially in the next couple of years. In the meantime, enjoy the best Shanghai has to offer (so far) at Happy Valley Amusement Park. While it's certainly no Disneyland, there's plenty to keep you entertained as you wander around the seven different "zones": Happy Times, Typhoon Bay, Sunshine Beach, Ant Kingdom, Gold Mine Town, Shanghai Beach and Shangri-la Woods. The "must see" attraction is definitely The Fireball, a giant wooden roller coaster that supposedly gets up to speeds over eighty kilometers per hour. If you're the type of person who constantly looks for your next adrenaline rush (and don't mind super cheesy décor), Happy Valley Amusement Park will definitely satisfy your needs in a pinch.
Happy Valley Amusement ParkView In Map
Add: 18 Linying Da Dao, Shanghai
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Keywords: Weekend trip Shanghai shanghai bike tour horseback riding Shanghai day trips from Shanghai
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