Changning is a district in Shanghai frequented for the Hongqiao Airport and Shanghai Zoo.
Shanghai Hongqiao Airport (IATA: SHA) is one of China's busiest airports and Shanghai's main domestic airport, located on the far west side of Changning. Hongqiao doesn't have much in the way of international service, offering only flights within East Asia to other cities' domestic airports (such as Tokyo's Haneda Airport or Seoul's Gimpo Airport). That said, you'd be hard-pressed to find an airport within China that doesn't have incoming flights to Hongqiao, making it often the most convenient option. It's far more convenient than Pudong's eponymous airport for heading to most parts of Puxi. However, the Hongqiao rail hub (on the far side of the airport in Minhang) can be an even easier access point given the station's connectivity to Shanghai's metro system.
Line 2 bisects Changning from east to west, running from the Bund and Jing'an across the district to Hongqiao airport. It's the most heavily-trafficked line in the entire system and sees major rush hour traffic. Part of the reason for its popularity is its speed - some residential sections of Changning are only 20 minutes away from Shanghai's primary sites for work and play, though you should expect closer to 40 to head from the Bund to Hongqiao airport.
Lines 3 and 4 share a common track above Changning that runs north-south in the eastern part of the district. Line 3 connects the district with Shanghai and Shanghai South Railway Stations; Line 4 forms a ring around Shanghai's inner core. It's a rough dividing line between the city center and the inner ring of suburbs, with the former to the east and the latter to the west. Zhongshan Park, where it crosses Line 2, is a major interchange and one of the most heavily-trafficked stations in the city, with several malls within walking distance.
Line 10 was built as a reliever for Line 2 and parallels it along its length to the south. It's the quickest route to the French Concession and Old City. Unlike other lines in Changning, it separates into two branches west of Longxi Road station, so be sure to head towards Hongqiao Railway Station if you're heading for the airport or the Shanghai Zoo. Line 10 runs past much of the nightlife in the area - near Jiao Tong University station in the east, and the Hongmei Road area south of the Longxi Road station.
At the extreme eastern edge of the district runs Line 11 in a north-south fashion. While it's probably more heavily used by commuters than tourists, its two stations are in some of Changning's most interesting sections, and have a markedly more urban feel than others.
Changning does not lack for major highways. Shanghai's main artery Yan'an Elevated Road is a straight shot to the Bund, while the city's three ring roads - Inner, Middle and Outer - also circulate traffic in and through Changning.
- Shanghai Zoo, (45-min bus ride from People's Sq #925). 06:30-17:00, 16:30 winter. See the giant panda and many more exotic animals at this spacious and modern zoo that's for the most part a far cry from the concrete animal prisons found elsewhere in the country. Do not feed or tease the animals. ¥30, ¥40 with elephant show, less than 1.2 m in height are free with paying adult. edit
Brilliance West Mall is at the corner of Xianxia Lu and Jianhe Lu. There are many clothing shops and restaurants as well as a home furnishings store, Hola, below the mall. There is a Watsons and a Decathlon sports equipment store with western side facing Jianhe Lu. Cloud Nine shopping center at Zhongshan Park has just about everything. Worth a look.
Several restaurants are available at Brilliance West Mall. You can also do grocery and household shopping at Century Mart.
- AOBARA (Japanese Food), (Near Gubei Rd and Yan'An Shi Rd). Lunch from ¥40. edit
- Chor Bazaar, 530 Jianhe Rd, Block 9 (Next to Bailian Xijiao Mall), ☎ +86 021 6239 9919. An Indian restaurant. edit
- Geneva, Villa 6, Lane 1896, Hami Lu, ☎ +86 21 5239 9197 ([email protected]), . M-Th 16:00-01:00, F 16:00-02:00, Sa 10:00-02:00, Su 10:00-01:00. A Swiss-themed restaurant with an outdoor patio, serving up Alpine dishes like cheese fondue. Also has a bar that stays open late-ish. ¥40-80. edit
- Renaissance Hotel Zhongshan Park, Cloud Nine, 26F. All-you-can-eat dim sum with tea. Not a bad price, but avoid the other two buffets. ¥66. edit
Changning is not exactly a hub for nightlife, but it's also not totally dead either. A belt running roughly from Jiaotong University station to Yan'an Road station has plenty of lo-fi, unpretentious establishments that would be totally out of place in the Bund or the gentrified parts of Xuhui. If you're further afield, just over the border in Minhang is Laowaijie - literally, Foreigners' Alley - which is a complex of almost exclusively expat-oriented bars and restaurants on its own pedestrianized street off Hongmei Road in the center of the district.
- Yuyintang (育音堂), 851 Kaixuan Rd (Yan'an Road Lines 3/4), ☎ +86 21 5237 8662 ([email protected]), . Tu-Su 21:00-late. Yuyintang is the first name in live music in Shanghai - it's well-known for its impressive range of acts and cheap drinks. Everything from straight-ahead Chinese pop to underground punk to itinerant international indie bands can be found on the bill - so do check ahead online to see if the acts are to your liking. ¥30-60. edit
- Dada, 115 Xingfu Rd (M9/10 Jiaotong University), ☎ +86 150 0018 2212. Dada is one of the longest-running clubs in town, and hosts a rotating cast of parties that have all manner of musics - with monthly nights dedicated to everything from global bass music to space-y disco. Crowd draws lots of students (thanks to the affordable drinks) and Europeans. ¥25-60. edit
- The Mansion, Dynasty Villa - B18, 851 Hongjing Rd. The Mansion is probably the most alternative party place you can find in Shanghai, located way out in the middle of nowhere (for Shanghai) in a large villa with a pool. By day they provide a workspace for a number of musicians and artists (some of whom live onsite); by night they host lots of weirdo foreigners who stick around for all-night raves to drum'n'bass and the like. It's a polarizing place - some find the crowd and drinks highly dubious, others swear by the experience. ¥100 cover with 5 drink tickets. edit
- Jin Jiang Galaxy Hotel, 888 W Zhongshan Rd, ☎ +86 21-62755888, . Offers air-conditionined guestrooms, all of which have broadband Internet access, mini-bar, and color TV. 3 in-house restaurants. From ¥277. edit
- Cypress Hotel, 2419 Hongqiao Rd; 上海市长宁区虹桥路2419号, ☎ +86 21-62688868 (, [email protected], fax: +86 21-62688007, +86 21-51901202 reservations), . 4-star hotel surrounded by 40 acres of lush gardens. Start ¥434. edit
- Rainbow Hotel (上海虹桥宾馆), 2000 Yan'an Rd W; 上海市长宁区中山西路888号, ☎ +86 21-62753388 (, [email protected], fax: +8621-62751013, +86 21-61226683 reservations), . A 4-star business hotel located in the Hongqiao business district. ¥433. edit
- Royalton Hotel Shanghai, 789 Wuyi Rd; 上海市长宁区武夷路789号, ☎ +86 21-52068000 (, [email protected], fax: +86 21-52060900, +86 21-51901202 reservations), . Four-star hotel. ¥430. edit
- Ambassador Hotel, 818 Wanhangdu Rd, . Five star situated in the heart of the Caojiadu Commercial Zone. Offers 308 rooms, complete with flat-screen TVs and wireless Internet access. It also has restaurants and meeting facilities. edit
- La Casa Elegant Hotel (上海宝京精品酒店), 3300 Yan'an W Rd; 上海市延安西路3300号, ☎ +86 21-54760066 (, [email protected], fax: +86 21-54762069 hotel, +86 21-51901202 reservations), . A 4-star hotel along Yan'an West Road. From ¥553. edit
- Grand Mercure Hongqiao (上海虹桥美爵大酒店), 369 Xi'an Xia Rd; 上海市长宁区仙霞路369号, ☎ +86 21-51533300 ("[email protected], fax: +86 21-515333555), . checkin: 14:00; checkout: noon. In the centre of the Hongqiao district, close to restaurants, exhibition centers, bars, shopping and local offices. edit
- Hongqiao State Guest Hotel, Hongqiao Rd; 上海市长宁区虹桥路1591号, ☎ +86 21-62198855 (, [email protected], fax: +86 21-62195231, +86 21-51901202 reservations), . This 5-star has 218 guestrooms spread over sprawling gardens, which are suitable for wedding ceremonies. Restaurants with cuisines that include Japanese and Shanghai crab, among others. Various meeting rooms are also available. edit
- Jinjiang Dahua Hotel, 918 Yan'an W Rd 上海市长宁区延安西路918号, ☎ +86 21-62512512, +86 21-61226688 Ext 7800 ([email protected], fax: +86 21-62526200, +86 21-51901202 reservations), . From ¥650. edit
- Millennium Hongqiao Hotel (上海千禧海鸥大酒店), 2588 Yan'an Xi Rd; 上海市长宁区延安西路2588号, ☎ +86 21-62085888 ([email protected], fax: +86 21-62951390), . A 5 star international hotel centrally located in the Hongqiao district within close proximity to Shanghai Mart and 6 km from the domestic airport. edit