It may technically still be in Shanghai, but the
journey over the Yangtze basin via one of the
longest bridges in China is enough to make a trip
to Chongming feel like you’re escaping the hustle
and bustle of downtown. It’s also close enough to
make for a good last minute getaway; the island
might not immediately spring to mind as a tourist
destination – it’s largely agricultural and is mindbogglingly
flat – but if it’s peace and quiet you’re
after, plus a dose of nature, you could do worse
than a weekend at the Hyatt Regency.
The plush resort on the east of the island is
conveniently located for Shanghai trippers,
with the Chinese-style walkways and extensive
gardens providing a great spot for city dwellers
to recharge their batteries. Facilities include a
fitness centre, sizeable swimming pool and five
dining options including Chinese restaurant
Pin Yue and a main buffet restaurant (come for
breakfast, stick to à la carte for dinner). They
also offer 24 dog-friendly rooms with enclosed
outdoor courtyards and other ‘canine comforts’.
You could very easily spend a good day or
so simply kicking back, but there are activities
capable of tempting you out of the resort too,
such as the massive Dongtan Wetlands Park (a
20-minute taxi from the hotel, around 80RMB).
With lakes, bamboo gardens and even goats on site, take advantage of the on-site bike rentaland spend a couple of hours exploring the park.
Hotel guests also get discounted entry at 60RMB
For more greenery, the Dongping National
Forest Park (entry 70RMB) towards the north
of the island is the largest man-planted forest
in eastern China and the only place in town
that offers grass skiing (which is every bit as
ridiculous as it sounds).
SHOKAY’s Tibetan yak down workshop is
also worth a visit. They put on organised trips
to Chongming including transportation from
Shanghai, a visit to an organic farm, art activities
and a visit to their textiles workshop. See their website for more details.
But if we’re honest, the best part of this trip is
the chance to have some downtime in comfort
outside of the city. That, and the ability to get
back to civilisation in just over an hour.
How to get there
Take exit 6 at Shanghai Science and
Technology Museum metro station (Line 2) and
you’ll find bus number 2 (二线, 12RMB) next
door. The hotel is a 10-minute taxi ride from the
bus terminus on the island, making for a total
journey time of 70 minutes. The Hyatt Regency
can arrange for taxis or a limousine service from
Shanghai upon request.
Rooms at the Hyatt Regency start from 800RMB plus 15
percent service charge; book by calling 6703
1234 or visiting their website.