It's time to get this party started!

The dazzling spectacle that is Shanghai Tourism Festival is just a day away and some lavish events are planned.

The dazzling spectacle that is Shanghai Tourism Festival is just a day away and some lavish events are planned.

The area near Hengshan and Fuxing Roads, known as Hengfu, is one of the most tranquil and laid-back blocks in the city, with beautiful old villas, tree-lined sidewalks, chic cafes and restaurants. Artists from around the world will perform there, under the plane trees every Saturday. Visitors are invited to join a swing dance party as part of the 2018 Hengfu Art Festival between tomorrow and October 6. Jazz concerts will be held at Wukang Road Tourist Information Center every Saturday night during the festival.

Also on Saturdays, a cycling event will tell tourists the stories behind the architecture including the former residences of literary giant Ba Jin and cartoonist Zhang Leping.

Some bookstores and businesses in the area will offer discounts during the festival.

Walking tours will explore the West Bund area in Xuhui, and two night events featuring old Shanghai songs and film screenings will be held at Shanghai Film Museum on September 28 and 29.

There will be plenty of things to do in other districts too.

The Pudong New Area will offer comedy shows and beer festival with German delicacies, beer and live music between September 18 and 24.

The landmark Oriental Pearl TV Tower will stage a comedy festival between September 17 and 29, with artists fresh from the Edinburgh Festival.

Shanghai Science and Technology Museum will host an exhibition on the life of inventor Nikola Tesla from September 29, and a huge magic mirror at Jinmao Tower Skywalk will host a spectacular show between tomorrow and October 7.

A triathlon will be staged at Dishui Lake area on September 15 and 16, while a fun run will be held at Shanghai Disney Resort on the same days.

In Jiading District, a 360-degree immersive dome-screen cinema taking audiences on a journey into outer space will be a highlight. In the cinema at LifeHub@Anting, audiences will be surrounded by huge screens and feel like they are racing into a starry sky.

As Jiading is known for its car culture, a number of auto races will be held.

Minsu — small guesthouses or B&Bs — have expanded quickly in the city in recent years.

Thirty-nine local minsu have come up with special deals for the tourism festival. They will offer around 40 percent off until September 18 for accommodation, food and a variety of distinctive activities.

Minsu are not the cheapest places to stay. Prices start at 700 yuan (US$100) but they offer things that other kinds of accommodation do not.

On the menu are fun things to do as diverse as fruit and vegetable picking, barbecues, calligraphy, canoeing, fishing, bonfire parties, tai chi and guqin (Chinese zither) experiences.

Minsu do not quite fit into any specific category of accommodation and the city recently released a guideline aimed at encouraging their expansion and regulating them. A number have since been licensed.

Minsu should be less than 800 square meters with fewer than 14 rooms, according to the guideline. There are also rules on operators, safety, staff and finances.

The guideline rules that minsu should have a standard hotel-style registration system for visitors. “Shanghai has many distinctive minsu,” said Xu Weiwan, director of the Shanghai Tourism Administration. “Minsu in Jinshanzui Fishing Village face the sea, while people staying in minsu in Chongming are close to rice fields.”

Metro changes during festival

Shanghai's metro will add more trains and close exits at busy stations to ensure smooth traffic and passenger safety during the festival.

This year’s festival includes the Mid-Autumn Festival holidays, between September 22 and 24.

Evening rush hour and visitors to the festival will challenge the system’s capacity, Shanghai Shentong Group said.

To meet demand, one more train will be added to Lines 1 and 13 tomorrow. From 6pm, Exit 2 of Huangpi Road S., Exit 3 of Shaanxi Road S., and Exit 1 of Huaihai Road M. will be closed.

It will be an extremely busy day on September 21, the last working day before Mid-Autumn Festival, with nearly 12 million passengers expected.

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