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School’s out for summer fun and frolics

SENIOR high school students all over Shanghai have just completed the National College Entrance Examination. This dreaded test, known as gaokao, is perhaps the most grueling examination that many Chinese students will ever face, and in large part determines their future academic and career prospects. Needless to say, preparing for gaokao is one of the most stressful experiences for Shanghai’s youth, and now that it’s over, they’ll be looking for some very well-earned relaxation time. With this in mind, here are some suggestions for fun summer activities in Shanghai.

 

Dino Beach Water Park

As Shanghai’s earliest water park, Dino Beach is naturally one of the city’s top summer destinations. The park boasts Asia’s largest wave pool, as well as a host of water slides, kiddie pools, and Western fast food stands. A lazy river winding around the park’s perimeter provides a good opportunity for those just looking to float lackadaisically among the summer rays. As with any popular destination in Shanghai, summer weekends can get very busy, but with lower turnout and discounted prices during the weekdays, it can make for an enjoyable experience.

With this in mind, we highly recommend you try to go on a weekday when it’s much quieter. If you do go on the weekend, try to arrive after 4pm, as the price of entry is cheaper. By 5pm most of the day crowds will have gone home. During the evening, the whole park will be lit up and you can have it almost to yourself until it closes. We recommend you eat a proper meal before going to the park, as the only food available is at the concession stands, and the park doesn’t allow outside food or drinks inside the area.

To get to Dino Beach, you can either take a 45-minute taxi from downtown, or take Metro Line 1 to the Xinzhuang terminal station, at which point it’s a five-minute taxi ride to the park.

 

Address: 78 Xinzhen Rd

Tel: 6478-3333

Website: www.dinobeach.com.cn

Treasure Cove at Shanghai Disney Resort

Inspired by Disney’s 2003 film “Pirates of the Caribbean,” Treasure Cove is the first pirate-themed land at a Disney park. Created especially for Shanghai Disneyland, it’s home to the wild, swashbuckling crew of scoundrels on the hunt for fun, action and adventure on the high-seas. Rich in detail and storytelling, Treasure Cove is a raucous collision of color, sights and songs, blending different cultures and countries together with pirate frivolity, mayhem and personality.

Guests become immersed in a pirate’s life as soon as they arrive at the entry, the first of five neighborhoods at Treasure Cove. From there, they will explore Shipwreck Shore, Fort Snobbish, Landlubber Landing and the Village, each with its own charm and personality. The land features a mix of architectural styles, along with two giant ships, pirate-themed restaurants and a fun, water play area. Guests of all ages will enjoy the epic scenes in “Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure,” as well as the up-close action and exciting stunts in “Eye of the Storm: Captain Jack’s Stunt Spectacular” at El Teatro Fandango.

 

Address: 753 Shendi Rd N.

Tel: 400-180-0000

Website: www.shanghaidisneyresort.com

 

Explore Chongming Island

For students looking to escape the hustle and bustle, noise and often stifling heat of Shanghai’s densely populated Metro area, Chongming Island provides a wealth of nature getaways.

One option is to visit Dongping National Forest Park. At 350 hectares, it’s the largest forest park in Shanghai, and is a relaxing place to get lost for an afternoon. Bike-friendly paths, winding through the park’s thick groves of bamboo and pine, give visitors an opportunity to spot the occasional roaming deer. All told, the park contains more than 500 species of trees and flowers.

For bird lovers, there’s Dongtan Wetland. Resting on the eastern tip of the island, and with around 300 species of birds, Dongtan is as biologically diverse as it is serene. Summer is the best time for avian admirers to visit the park, due to the large number of migratory birds, some flying from as far away as Europe and North America. Park entrance is 70 yuan.

• Dongping National Forest Park

Address: 2188 Beiyan Highway

Tel: 5933-8028

Website: www.dpslpark.com

 

• Dongtan Wetland

Address: Dongwang Road, next to a windmill

Tel: 3936-7000

Website: www.dongtanshidi.com


 

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