Walking is great for sightseeing, but it's easy to get lost. Embrace the crowd. Don't expect smiles because Chinese don't often look into others' eyes and smile to each other, even though most people are very friendly to foreigners.
You will find that Shanghai is a city much more than hustle and bustle.
When you decide to go out on foot, remember to take paper and a pen along. Once you are confused by the labyrinth-like streets, which are famous for not following straight directions, you may write down your destination and ask a passersby for help. Generally, youngsters in Shanghai can more or less speak some English.
Turning to the traffic policemen is another way when you need help. Be patient with them, for their English is not perfect, yet.
Be wary of aggressive drivers when crossing the streets. When the streets become extremely busy, to get rid of the traffic jam, drivers may even ignore the traffic lights. Even with the law on your side, you still need to be careful to avoid shocks. We do see a lot of foreigners cursing at rude cabbies and drivers who rush ahead of pedestrians to turn a corner.
Nowadays, some streets are equipped with countdown timers to tell you the time left for you to get across the street. Sometimes it is accompanied with a "beeper."
The downtown area is often crowded at weekends. Beware: thieves and frauds are always with the crowds. Keep an eye on your valuables and never bother to reply to any doubtful stranger.
1. Always use a fly-over or an underpass if there is one because they are always the safest way to cross the road.
2. Mind yourself on the pavements. As some streets don't have bike lanes, some cyclists may use the pavement as a short-cut.