Where to take your kids or indulge your inner child
Toy Story Land
Shanghai Disneyland opened its seventh themed zone, Toy Story Land, last April. The new zone marks the Shanghai park’s first major expansion since its inauguration in 2016.
The fun parts: Go for a ride on the gentle, family-style Slinky Dog Spin carousel or test your mettle on the 30m-high roller coaster Rex’s Racer. Shanghai’s Toy Story Land introduces the Old West-themed spinner called Woody’s Roundup, which is perfect for the young ones. To infinity and beyond!
Buy tickets from: the theme park website or mobile app
310 Shendi W Rd; shanghaidisneyresort.com
Peppa Pig World of Play
The first Peppa Pig World of Play indoor theme park opened in late October at Shanghai LC Mall. This is the second Peppa Pig-themed attraction to launch, following an outdoor park in the UK.
The fun parts: The 1,100m2 Peppa Pig wonderland — tailored for young families — contains 10 play zones inspired by scenes from the cartoon series. Look out for the Tree House and George’s Fort and more. The little ones can also pounce around in the Muddle Puddles zone.
Buy tickets from: the theme park website, WeChat channel (@ppwopsh) or Shanghai LC Mall box office
2389 Zhangyang Rd; peppapigworldofplay.com
Shanghai Haichang Ocean Park
China’s largest ocean theme park operator opened its newest attraction, Shanghai Haichang Ocean Park, in November.
The fun parts: Get up close on a weekend with lovable creatures like penguins and sea lions at five zones. Walk under an aquarium feature (purportedly large enough to house a blue whale), and enjoy a short featurette in a 4D cinema. The park has 10 marine-themed rides, as well as a cable car system that can get you from one end of the park to the other
Buy tickets from: the theme park website and online travel-focused merchants (like Ctrip and Tuniu)
166 Yinfei Rd; sh.haichangoceanpark.com
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3 hotels where young families can try in Shanghai
A stone’s throw from the ocean park, the cruise-ship-shaped Shanghai Haichang Ocean Park Theme Resort (777 Qiqing Rd) offers over 300 ocean-themed rooms and suites. There’s also a lobby bar for high tea and decent cocktails.
Just 1km away from Shanghai Disneyland, the new Shishengyu Inn (1330 Minyi Village) is friendly on the pocket. Stay in tastefully decorated rooms — many inspired by Disney’s beloved fairy tales. Enjoy free transfers to and from the park.
Also near Disneyland, Haolaiwu Home Guesthouse (25 Nansong, Chuansha Village) is a simple and homey crib run by a friendly older couple. Its very pink Hello Kitty and Winnie the Pooh rooms are superb for young families.
Photos by Zhu huanan, Ke yi, Zhong yang, Bai kelin / imaginechina
This article first appeared in the December 2018 issue of Smile magazine.