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Top 8 Must-see Museums and Art Centers in Shanghai

As the Oriental pearl of China, Shanghai also has a long history. The number of museums in Shanghai exceeds more than 130. What museums are worth visiting in Shanghai? Here are the top 8 must-see museums and Art Centers in Shanghai.


1. Shanghai Museum 上海博物馆

Built in 1952, the Shanghai Museum is absolutely the top one comprehensive museum in Shanghai, with more than 1 million cultural relics. The collection of cultural relics in the Shanghai Museum includes 31 categories of bronze, ceramics, calligraphy and paintings, sculptures, oracle bones, symbols, currency, jade, furniture, embroidery, lacquerware, bamboo and fangs, ethnic cultural relics and etc. Shanghai museum enjoys a high reputation at home and abroad for its complete system, rich collections and exquisite quality.

  • Entrance Fee: free
  • Opening time: 9am–5pm (last entry 4pm), closed on Mondays
  • Address: 201 Renmin Road, Huangpu District, Shanghai
  • Telephone: 8621-6372 3500
  • Transportation: take metro line 1, 2, 8 or bus No. 18, 46, 49, 71, 108, 112, 123, 145, 934, 952 and get off at People’s Square Station (人民广场)


2.  Shanghai Science and Technology Museum 上海科技馆

The Shanghai Science and Technology Museum is a major public welfare social and cultural project invested by the Shanghai Municipal Government to improve the city's comprehensive competitiveness and the quality of all citizens in the new century. With the aim of scientific communication, the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum takes the science display as the carrier and focuses on the theme of “Nature, People, Science and Technology”. It has become Shanghai's most important science education base and spiritual civilization construction base.

  • Entrance fee: 45 yuan
  • Opening time: 9am – 5:15 pm (closed on Mondays)
  • Address: 2000 Century Avenue, Pudong New District, Shanghai
  • Telephone: 8621-6862 2000*6888
  • Transportation: take Subway Line 2 and get off at Shanghai Science and Technology Museum (上海科技馆) or take bus No. 640、794、815、984、638、983、184、975


3. Shanghai Natural History Museum 上海自然博物馆

The Shanghai Natural History Museum is one of the largest natural museums in China, displaying a rich collection of dinosaur fossils, animal fossils, paleontological fossils. It is a branch of Shanghai Science and Technology Museum and located in Shanghai Jing'an Sculpture Park. The museum has five floors and 10 permanent exhibitions, which are divided into three systems: natural evolution, life environment and human civilization. The highlight is the skeleton of a 26-meter-long Mamenchisaurus, which is the largest dinosaur in Asia.

  • Entrance fee: 30 yuan
  • Opening hours: 8:50 am–5:15 pm (closed on Mondays)
  • Address: 510 Beijing West Road, Jing'an District
  • Telephone: 86-21-68620280
  • Transportation: Take subway line 1 to Xinzha Road Station, 2 to West Nanjing Road, 13 to Shanghai Natural History Museum Station (Exit 1), or take bus No. 36, 19, 64, 136, 955, 41, 109, 301, 927, 324, 104


4. China Art Museum 中华艺术宫

The Chinese Art Palace was converted from the China Pavilion at the 2010 Shanghai World Expo in China. The China Art Palace is a museum of modern and contemporary art that combines public welfare and academicism. Based on the collection of Shanghai's state-owned art units, the China Art Palace displays art treasures that reflect the origin and development of modern Chinese art, collecting and displaying the highest level of artistic creation in China. The multimedia version of "The Riverside Scene at Qingming Festival" is now a popular highlight in the China Art Museum, but requires an extra ticket to see it.

  • Entrance Fee: Free
  • Opening Hours: 10:00-18:00, closed on Monday
  • Address: No. 205, Shangnan Road, Pudong New District, Shanghai
  • Telephone: 400-921-9021
  • Transportation: Take subway line 7 get off at Yaohua Road Station (耀华路站), or line 8 and get off at China Art Palace station(中华艺术宫站)


5. Shanghai History Museum上海市历史博物馆

Shanghai History Museum is a landmark museum that comprehensively reflects the local history of Shanghai. The Shanghai Museum of History has a total collection of about 110,000 pieces in 15 categories: painting, metal, ceramics, crafts, badges, literature, printing, textiles, stone carvings, coins, photographs, paper-cuts, stamps, records and other miscellaneous items. The building of the Shanghai Museum of History is the original Shanghai Horse Racing Building, which was rebuilt in 1934, bearing the memory of several generations of shanghainese. It is a best place to know the history of Shanghai.

  • Entrance fee: free
  • Opening time: 9am–5:00pm, closed on Monday
  • Address: 325 Nanjing West Road, Pudong New District, Shanghai
  • Telephone: 021-63232504
  • Transportation: Take subway line 1, 2, 8 get off at People’s Square Station (人民广场站), leave the station from Exit 11 and walk about 5 minutes to the museum.


6. Shanghai Railway Museum上海铁路博物馆

The Shanghai Railway Museum was built on the original site of the Shanghai Railway Station (Old North Station), which was built in 1909 and has a British classical architectural style. It is now a Shanghai science education base. Guided by the scientific concept of development, the Shanghai Railway Museum uses historical materials and real objects as the main carriers to show the history of the Shanghai and East China Railways over the past 100 years since the railway entered China in the 1960s and 1970s. Here you can see the real locomotive and various train parts equipment as well as simulation models.

  • Entrance fee: 10 Yuan
  • Opening time: 9am–4:30pm, closed on Monday
  • Address: 200 Tianmu East Road, Jingan District, Shanghai
  • Transportation: Take subway line 3, 4 and get off at Baoshan Road Station (宝山路站)


7. China Maritime Museum 中国航海博物馆

China Maritime Museum, the full name of “Shanghai China Maritime Museum”, is the first national-level nautical museum approved by the State Council in China and is jointly built by the Ministry of Transport and the Shanghai Municipal Government in Shanghai. The theme of the museum is “Navigation”, which is divided into six exhibition halls: nautical history, ship, navigation and port, maritime and maritime safety, seafarers and military navigation. You can learn about the evolution of Chinese shipbuilding history and navigation technology through various ship models and graphic introductions, as well as physical display of marine equipment.

  • Entrance Fee: CNY 50
  • Opening Hours: 9:30-16:00, closed on Monday
  • Telephone: 86-21-68283691
  • Address: No. 179, Shengang Avenue, Lingang New City, Pudong New District
  • Transportation: Take subway line 16 and get off at Dishui Lake Station (滴水湖站)


8. Shanghai Liuli China Museum 上海琉璃艺术博物馆

Known as the most beautiful museum in Shanghai, Shanghai Liuli China Museum is the only glass art museum in Shanghai, covering an area of 2,400 square meters. This visually stunning museum teaches visitors about the history of glass in ancient China, as well as the skill and labor involved in creating it. One of the most impressive pieces on display is the Guanyin statue, which took 10 years to create. This three-dimensional restoration work is derived from the Yuan Dynasty murals in the Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang, measuring 4.5 meters in total, is the only non-glass work in the museum.

  • Entrance Fee: CNY 45
  • Opening Hours: 10:00-17:00, closed on Monday
  • Address: No. 25, Taikang Road, Huangpu District
  • Telephone: 86-21-64672268-8858
  • Transportation: Take subway line 9 and get off at Dapu Road Station (打浦路站)


Create an Unforgettable Memory in Shanghai

Here are our most popular Shanghai tours for your reference:

►One Day Shanghai City Highlights Tour: Jade Buddha Temple, Yuyuan Garden, Shanghai Museum, Oriental Pearl TV Tower, Nanjing Road, the Bund

►3 Days Best Shanghai Tour: Jade Buddha Temple, the Bund, Yuyuan Garden, Oriental Pearl TV Tower, Nanjing Road

►Shanghai tours

Feel free to contact us if you have any doubts, we’re pleased to help you with your Shanghai travel plan. You can also tailor-made your own Shanghai tour at Free Online Tailor-made Tour to create your unique Shanghai tour.