Excitement mounts as Shanghai gets ready for tourism festival

Hu Min
From September 16 to October 6, 200 diversified activities will be rolled out across the city, with the Shanghai Tourism Festival, in its 34th edition, taking on a brand new look.
Hu Min

Whether you are a gourmet, a travel enthusiast or an art buff, you will find something of interest at the upcoming 2023 Shanghai Tourism Festival, the city's annual tourism extravaganza.

With the clock ticking down to the grand event, Shanghai is ready to wow residents and travelers from around the world.

Between September 16 and October 6, 200 diversified activities will be rolled out across the city, with the festival, in its 34th edition, taking on a brand new look towards the goal of making Shanghai a world famous tourist destination and the first stop in China for inbound travelers.

"The festival will vividly demonstrate the unique charm and splendor of Shanghai and attract an increasing number of foreign tourists to enjoy the fun of travel in the city towards the goal of making Shanghai the first stop in China for them," Fang Shizhong, director-general of the Shanghai Administration of Culture and Tourism, told a press conference on Tuesday.

For the first time, the opening ceremony of the festival scheduled for Saturday night in Hongkou District will raise its curtain with a feast of floats, festooned boats, and light and shadow art display along the Huangpu River.

During the festival, a cultural and tourism feast will be cooked up with a number of festival events such as the Fuxing Art Festival and the Bund Architecture Festival as well as concerts.

At iconic attractions such as the Shanghai Tower, Shanghai Oriental Pearl TV Tower and "Tian An 1000 Trees," dubbed the city's Hanging Gardens of Babylon, light and shadow shows will be staged, while virtual reality art pop-up shops and exhibitions of metaverse multimedia series are also on the agenda.

Meanwhile, some classic activities of the festival will make a comeback in an upgraded version, the press conference heard.

Among these, floats will go on a touring exhibition in the "Five New Cities" and 11 city districts from Saturday.

During the National Day holiday, they will tour around Dishui Lake in the Lingang New Area.

A parade of festooned boats on Suzhou Creek, an international tea culture tourism festival in Jing'an District, and a Mid-Autumn Festival garden party at Guilin Park filled with dense fragrance of sweet-scented osmanthus are planned as well.

During the festival, business circles across the city will host a raft of activities, according to the local commission of commerce.

The Huaihai Road business circle will release its city walk routes, while consumption coupons will be delivered in Nanjing Rd W., Suhe Bay and Daning business areas.

In Changning District, bazaars combining sports, culture and commerce elements will be hosted.

For sports enthusiasts, there will be rowing, snooker, Chinese chess, orienteering, soccer, and auto games and competitions throughout the festival.

After a three-year absence, the much-anticipated ATP 1000 tournament, the Shanghai Rolex Masters, is returning with an expanded scale from October 2, the venue being the Qizhong Tennis Center in Minhang District.

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