Living in Shanghai



Shanghai is situated on the banks of the Yangtza River Delta in Eastern China. It is the largest city in China and the eighth largest city in the world. Shanghai has a population of 18.7 million, including a transient population of 2 million.

Shanghai is one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing cities. Today, tourists from all over travel to Mainland China’s most developed city. The Huangpu River splits Shanghai in two. West of the river is known as Puxi, while East of the river is Pudong. Locals also describe Puxi as the older and central part of the city and Pudong is more newly developed.

With a population of 24+ million people, it is also one of China’s most influential economic, financial, cultural and business hubs. Shanghai is a very modern city that still embraces ancient traditions. Visitors have the opportunity to witness cutting-edge technology and transportation while also immersing themselves in East Asian culture.



Over 100 students joined the G-MEO family during 2018 summer. For many of them, it's their first study abroad experience and their first time visiting China. According to our alumnus from Norwich University, Torri Hixon, "It is difficult to fully express the impact that going abroad to China had on me.  I was able to open myself up to an entirely different culture, language, and way of life.  Being in China taught me so many things that I never could have gained had I just stayed in my home country and comfort zone.  I deeply encourage other American students to go abroad to China and have amazing experiences of their own learning, traveling, and growing as a more cultured and worldly individual."


G-MEO Shanghai Center is located in Zijing Plaza in Yangpu District. Yangpu (杨浦区 Yángpǔqū) is one of the districts that comprise the city center of Shanghai. It is located northeast of the downtown core, bordering the Huangpu River on the east and south. Yangpu District is trying to brand itself as the "District of Knowledge" as it is home to the main campuses of three of China's most prestigious universities, Fudan University, Tongji University and the Shanghai University of Finance and Economics. 

It is also close to the historical site Wujiaochang (五角场 Wǔjiǎochǎng; literally Five Corners Square), now the commercial core of the district. It housed a large group of shopping centers, restaurants, and entertainment facilities. 


G-MEO will provide hotel options near Shanghai center. The housing fee only covers the time from the program start and end date.  Rooms offer furnishings, private bathrooms, and wi-fi access. Other meals are students' own responsibility.


Eating in Shanghai

Initially, Shanghai was not known for specific foods like other Chinese towns. Being a newer city, Shanghai’s cuisine borrowed flavors and inspiration from the neighboring towns of Jiangsu and Zhejiang. Today, chefs have developed a special taste which can be found in many of Shanghai’s flavorful sauces and dishes. 

Food in Shanghai can be classified as Benbang or Haipai. Benbang is also known as local or traditional cuisine, originating in Shanghai over a hundred years ago. The main ingredients used are pork, chicken, fish and vegetables with soybean and oil sauce. Haipai foods were inspired by Qing Dynasty delicacies. These foods were heavily inspired by neighboring cities and countries. Main ingredients include crabs, shrimps and fish. 

Other trademark cuisines are: Shanghai-style Nian Gao, Lion’s head meatballs, fried noodles, dumplings and sangjibo (pork puns).