During our stay in Shanghai, we spent an afternoon exploring the Shanghai Museum located in People’s Square. The museum is divided into eleven galleries presenting collections of Ancient Bronze, Paintings, Calligraphy, Sculptures, Ancient Ceramics, Jade, Coins, Ming and Quing Furniture and Seals.

Shanghai Museum
Sculpture of a dogUsed to guard the tombs of the dead in the Eastern Han period (25 - 220 AD)

It is predominately made up of artefacts that demonstrate the history and past of Shanghai and China but doesn’t explain any history in written text. The architecture of the building is unusual and the exhibits are worth a walk around. The Museum is laid out well and the Ming and Qing Furniture was interesting but we didn’t spend much longer than an hour in the museum. Worth a visit if you’re interested in Ancient Chinese history.

Shanghai Museum
CalligraphyMany examples of calligraphy through different periods are found in the 'Chinese Calligraphy Gallery'

The museum has many floors so take the lift to the top floor and work your way down.

The museum issues 8000 free tickets every day, throughout the day. On entry, we simply walked in and were given a booklet so I don’t think it gets particularly busy. The museum is open 9am – 5pm and is just a short walk from the People’s Square Station if you’re catching the metro.

There are so many awesome, quirky and unusual things to do in Shanghai that you won’t know where to start.

Shanghai Museum
CoinsMany coins shown from different dynasties
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Shanghai Museum
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  1. How awesome that they give out free tickets! It sounds like an interesting visit and I bet it was facinating learning about the history of the chinese. If I am ever there, I’ll make sure to check it out!

  2. Chinese culture is one of the oldest in the history of civilization. It must be a great experience to walk through their history. The museum seems to have a very good collection too

  3. Fascinating! Certainly would be interesting to see this museum, there is so much Chinese history that is kept away from public knowledge…Very interesting they give out free tickets!

  4. Even if they had it in Chinese I wish they had some translation- I’m a geek for history and would love to know what all the writing says!

  5. Such a great initiative to give out free tickets! Just wondering if they give out a maximum of 8000 tickets per day or if that’s the amount of people who visit per day?

    • 8000 is the amount of admissions they allow, after that they stop, if 8000 is not reached then they stop allowing people to enter at 4PM.

  6. 8000 free tickets. Wow! What happens if they issued all 8000 tickets? Do they need to pay or they will no longer be accepted?

    • I believe 8000 is maximum, last admission is 4PM so which ever comes first, after that they stop admission.

  7. I loved the Shanghai museum! I particularly found the paper room fascinating. I sucked not being able to take photos in every room, but you can get the most of it. I loved the jade sculptures too. It truly is a great museum!

    • The ‘No Photography’ sign is something I hate to see, I do understand in some cases it is necessary though – still a pain though when you have been looking forward to capturing a place and you are restricted.

  8. You had me at learn! We love making travel educational as it helps everyone remember it more!! The dog statue would be s favorite with the kids, I’m sure. Fascinating place – we never miss a museum!!

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