A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Istanbul vs. Shanghai for Attractions, Food, Couples, and Backpackers

Should you visit Istanbul or Shanghai?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Istanbul or Shanghai, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Istanbul

Istanbul is a historic, diverse, and beautiful city. With plenty of activities and things to do, it's a huge city that draws plenty of visitors. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. And you can't forget about the nightlife, food, and shopping.

Shanghai

Shanghai is a cosmopolitan, professional, and diverse port city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. It's also known for nightlife, food, and shopping.

Istanbul and Shanghai: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Scenic old town
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to the Blue Mosque
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to the Bund


Is there more to do in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Visitors will generally find more to do in Istanbul than Shanghai. While Shanghai is larger than Istanbul, Istanbul has more sights, attractions, and activities for tourists. Istanbul is very popular for its nightlife and historical sights, while Shanghai attracts visitors for its shopping. Istanbul is more touristy than Shanghai and is known for its world class historical sights, stunning mosques, and dynamic energy. It is also well known for The Blue Mosque. Shanghai is famous for its historical landmarks, local street food, vibrant markets, and waterfront promenade.

How is Istanbul different from Shanghai?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Shanghai and Istanbul. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Both Istanbul and Shanghai have world-class landmarks and museums for visitors.

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Istanbul that are not to be missed. With such a long and diverse religious and political history, it has many museums, mosques, churches, and archeological sites that you can visit. Some of the most famous sights include the Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Sarayi, and the Blue Mosque.

The museums and tourist attractions in Shanghai are world-renowned. The city's sights mix culture with modern innovation. From the futuristic skyline and the iconic waterfront area known as the Bund, to the classic Yu Garden, there are a diversity of sights around the city. There are also museums like the Shanghai Museum, which educate visitors on Chinese culture.


Is the Food Better in Istanbul or Shanghai? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Picking the best cuisine and restaurants between Istanbul and Shanghai can be difficult as they are each world-class in their own way.

Known for it's food and restaurant scene, Istanbul is always at the top of any foodie's travel list. From Turkish classics to sweet desserts, the city has it all. Popular dishes include Turkish style pizza, kebabs, and doner, which you'll find everywhere for affordable prices. You'll also find many tourist-centered restaurants in the touristy areas but if you get away from the main sights, you'll find more local options that let you sample high quality food for affordable prices.

Many restaurants in Shanghai have been singled out for their culinary prowess. The city's cuisine has a long history with many distinct traditional dishes. The foods incorporate a lot of soy sauce and sugar and you'll find most dishes are rice based as opposed to using wheat products. Popular local dishes include the famous Shanghai soup dumplings, steamed crab, and braised pork. The city is also famous for its snacks, which can be purchased at one of the many snack houses or street stalls.

Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for Nightlife?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul is notable for nightlife and partying. Also, Shanghai is not as famous, but is still a good port city to visit for its evening party scene.

Istanbul has plenty to do after the sun goes down. Dancing, dining, and partying have all become part of Istanbul's culture. Top nightclubs in the city include Reina, Sortie, and Supperclub. If you're looking for dance clubs and alcohol, your best bet is to head to the Beyoglu district.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Shanghai. A night out can quickly become very expensive. Many of the venues are spread out so you'll likely spend at least some of the time in a taxi. The Bund is one of the most popular areas for nightlife, but this area also has the most expensive bars and clubs. They often offer impressive views of Pudong and the Huangpu River though.

Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for its Old Town?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul is a world-class destination for its old town. However, Shanghai does not have a historic old town.

The historic old town of Istanbul is revered around the world. The Old City in Istanbul is the most historic part of the city. It's where you'll find most of the city's historic sights. The area around Sultanahmet Square is the most popular tourist area to explore.

Shanghai does not have a historic old town.


Is the Shopping Better in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Shanghai is an amazing port city to visit for shopping. Also, Istanbul is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its shopping opportunities.

Shanghai is a famous shopping destination with plenty of stores. The city has many large shopping malls with department stores, name brand fashion, and trendy shops. It is also known for its cheap electronics and tailor-made clothes.

Istanbul is well-known for its shopping. It is the capital of culture and fashion in Turkey, and there are many shopping areas that carry all kinds of brands. For a more traditional, but touristy experience head to the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Market. For modern brands, Istiklal Caddesi is the most popular area for shopping.

Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for Families?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul and Shanghai are both great destinations for the whole family.

Istanbul is a very family-friendly place to visit. The city has several kid-friendly museums, a couple of aquariums, and fun theme parks. If the kids need a break from the city, you can spend a day at Vialand Theme Park or LEGOLAND Discovery Center Istanbul. Food in Istanbul is also very kid-friendly with many affordable dishes that young ones will enjoy.

Because of its large number of kid-friendly activities, Shanghai is very family-friendly. Of course there's Disneyland, but kids will also enjoy soaking up the city's culture, trying fun new snacks, and exploring the many science and kid-friendly museums. There are also parks and outdoor spaces as well as skyscrapers and towers that offer incredible views of the city.

Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for Couples?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Shanghai is an amazing port city to visit for romance. Also, Istanbul is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its romantic activities.

Shanghai has so much to offer for a romantic couple's vacation. With its east meets west personality, couples will be able to enjoy an amazing culinary experience, beautiful gardens, and luxury hotels and spas. There are many romantic areas around this bustling city, making it the perfect place for a romantic city getaway.

Istanbul makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. Couples who enjoy history, culture, and vibrant neighborhoods will enjoy a romantic stay here. The city lights up at night and there are many rooftop dessert cafes where you can take in the view. The waterfront setting is the perfect place to watch the sunset and there are many places to walk and soak up the atmosphere.


Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul is a world-class destination for backpackers. Also, Shanghai is not as famous, but is still a good port city to visit for backpackers and budget travelers.

Backpackers and budget travelers come from all over the world to visit Istanbul. There are plenty of hostels and budget accommodation options, and there's also plenty of ways to meet other travelers. You'll find plenty of hostels concentrated in the Sultanahmet area.

Plenty of budget travelers and backpackers visit Shanghai. The city is expensive, but there are hostels and cheap eateries that make it accessible even for the budget conscious. Business travelers and local workers give the city a more professional vibe during the day, but if you find the right place to stay you'll quickly be able to meet likeminded travelers.

Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for Students?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul and Shanghai are both great destinations for students and younger travelers.

Istanbul is a great city to visit as a student. Students appreciate the city's vibrant neighborhoods, constant activity, and diverse population.

Students come from all over to stay in Shanghai. The city attracts international and study abroad students who enjoy its long history and fascinating culture. It's a world financial capital with many businesses headquartered here, so employment opportunities are abundant.

Is Istanbul or Shanghai Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul is a world-class destination for its public transit. Also, Shanghai is not as famous, but is still a good port city to visit for times when you don't have a car.

With a huge network, the transit system in Istanbul can get you around easily. It has a comprehensive and diverse public transit system that includes buses, trams, minibuses, ferries, funicular, and more.

The public transit in Shanghai can get you to most places easily. There is a metro system as well as buses and taxis which are relatively affordable.


Is Istanbul or Shanghai a more walkable city?

Istanbul
Shanghai

Istanbul and Shanghai both are great when exploring on foot.

Istanbul is very walkable. Although it is huge, most of the neighborhoods that tourists visit are incredibly walkable and pedestrian-friendly.

Shanghai is a very walkable city. It's possible to explore the major tourist areas on foot but it can be very hot and humid during the summer months.

For even more information, also check out Is Istanbul Worth Visiting? and Is Shanghai Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Shanghai or Istanbul?

How long in Istanbul or Shanghai?

In either Istanbul or Shanghai, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Istanbul than Shanghai because of the overall number of sights and activities. Usually, 3-7 days is a good amount of time for Istanbul, and 2-5 days is enough time in Shanghai.

Families should spend more time in Istanbul than Shanghai. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Istanbul, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Shanghai than Istanbul. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Shanghai that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Istanbul than Shanghai if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Istanbul.


  • How many days in Istanbul or Shanghai? Ideal Length of Stay
    Istanbul 3-7 
    Shanghai 2-5

One day in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Istanbul is a big city with plenty to do. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

The beautiful port city of Shanghai offers food and shopping. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Istanbul is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

Shanghai is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this port city makes for a great vacation. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Shanghai, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.


Five days in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Istanbul is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Istanbul, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Shanghai is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Shanghai, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

A week in Istanbul or Shanghai?

Istanbul is a great place to explore. It is common to spend one week here. Visiting the old town is also a must. One week is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Istanbul has to offer. This city offers something for everyone.

Shanghai is a great place to explore. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This port city offers something for everyone.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best 2-Week Tours in Turkey, Tours for Outdoor and Nature Lovers in Turkey, The Best 2-Week Tours from Beijing, and The Best Family-Friendly Tours to China.


Which place is cheaper, Shanghai or Istanbul?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Istanbul is $126, while the average daily cost in Shanghai is $115. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Istanbul and Shanghai in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Istanbul $47
    Shanghai $81
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Istanbul $94
    Shanghai $162
Compare Hotels in Istanbul and Shanghai

Looking for a hotel in Istanbul or Shanghai? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Istanbul


Hotels in Shanghai


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Istanbul Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Istanbul $55
    Shanghai $3.87
Typical Local Transportation Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Ferry
    $0.09
  • Local Bus
    $0.09

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Istanbul

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Istanbul:

  • Istanbul Airport Departure Transfer : $5.00
  • Istanbul Airports Arrival or Departure Private Transfers: $14
  • Private Transfer from Istanbul Cruise Port to Istanbul hotels : $19
  • Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen Airport (SAW) to City Center - Arrival Private Transfer: $20
  • Istanbul City to Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen Airport (SAW)-Departure Private Transfer: $20
  • Private Economic VIP Transfer to/from Istanbul Airport : $20
  • Airport - Otel Transfer and City Tours: $20
  • Istanbul Ataturk Airport (ISL) to Istanbul hotels - Arrival Private Transfer: $22
  • Istanbul Hotels to Istanbul Ataturk Airport (ISL) - Departure Private Transfer: $22
  • Princes' Islands Cruise with Lunch and Transfer Full-Day Tour: $23
  • Istanbul to Istanbul Airport (ISL) - Departure Private Transfer: $24
  • Istanbul Airport (ISL) to Istanbul - Arrival Private Transfer: $24

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Shanghai

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Shanghai:


  • Taxi Ride
    $3.59
  • Two Subway Tickets
    $0.83

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Shanghai

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Shanghai:

  • Yiwu Railway Station Private Departure Transfer from City Area : $18
  • Yiwu Railway Station Private Arrival Transfer to City Area: $18
  • Shanghai Hongqiao Airport Private Departure Transfers: $18
  • Shared Transfer: from Hotel in Shanghai to Shanghai Wusongkou Cruise Port: $20
  • Yiwu Airport Private Departure Transfer from City Area : $20
  • Shanghai Pudong Airport Private Arrival Transfers: $20
  • Shanghai Pudong Airport Private Departure Transfers: $20
  • Private Transfer to Shanghai Railway Station from City Hotels or Outskirts: $22
  • Private Transfer to Huangpu River Cruise Terminal: $24
  • Private Transfer from Shanghai Cruise Port to Shanghai Hotels: $24
  • Shanghai Hongqiao Airport Chauffeur Service, Shanghai Airport Transfer: $25
  • Private Transfer between Qibao Ancient Water Town and Shanghai City Area : $25

Is it cheaper to fly into Istanbul or Shanghai?

Prices for flights to both Shanghai and Istanbul change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Istanbul $31
    Shanghai $21
Typical Food Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of dining costs in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Juice
    $0.06
  • Turkish Delight
    $0.02
  • Dessert
    $0.26
  • Pastries
    $0.05

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Istanbul

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Istanbul.

  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Turkish Night Show from Istanbul: $17
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise Turkish Night Show All inclusive: $17
  • Dinner Cruise Bosphorus with Hotel Transfer: $28
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Unlimited Drinks and Shows: $28
  • 3 Hour Ottoman Dinner Cruise in Istanbul : $30
  • İstanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Traditional Turkish Show: $30
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise and Turkish Dance Show: $31
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Folklore Show & Belly Dancers: $32
  • Istanbul Turkish Coffee Cooking and Tasting with Locals at Home: $33
  • Cooking Class in Istanbul - Home Cooking with a Local: $33
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Folklore Show & Belly Dancers: $33
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise & Entertaintment & Private Table & Wi-Fi: $33

Typical Food Prices in Shanghai

Some typical examples of dining costs in Shanghai are as follows:


  • Dumpling Breakfast
    $1.38
  • Desserts in Jinmao Building Observatory
    $20
  • Ajisen Lunch for Two
    $7.18
  • Cantelope
    $1.66
  • Dumplings and Soup
    $2.07
  • Duck Dinner
    $4.14
  • Pastries
    $2.90
  • Barbeque Dinner
    $8.83

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Shanghai

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Shanghai.

  • Online Cooking Class Handmade Noodles by Sunflower Li: $20
  • Online Cooking Class Sesame Chicken by Sunflower Li: $20
  • Online Cooking Class Dim Sum by Sunflower Li: $20
  • Online Cooking Class Fried Rice by Sunflower Li : $20
  • Online Cooking Class General Tso's Chicken by Sunflower Li: $20
  • Private Cooking Class: Make Your Own Dim Sum In Shanghai: $67
  • 2.5hrs Chinese Kitchen Cooking Class: Xiaolongbao Soup Dumplings: $70
  • Authentic Local Food Tour in Central Shanghai: $79
  • Late Night Food Tour in the Shanghai's French Concession: $89
  • Eat Like A Local: Shanghai Night Food Tour: $90
  • 4-Hour Food Tour in Qibao Water Town from Shanghai by Subway: $95
  • Shanghai Hot pot dinner foodie tour with guide and one way private transfer: $113

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Istanbul $79
    Shanghai $8.42
Typical Entertainment Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Bosphurus Boat (for 2)
    $0.62
  • Yerebatan Cistern for Two
    $0.62
  • Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts for Two
    $0.31
  • Hagia Sofia entrance
    $0.93

Tours and Activities in Istanbul

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Istanbul are as follows:

  • Istanbul Sites: Peel back the layers of Turkish history a self-guided audio tour: $5.40
  • Self Guided City Audio Tour of Istanbul: $5.55
  • Kadikoy's history, theatres and sweet shops: a self-guided audio tour: $5.99
  • Istanbul's Karaköy Neighbourhood: A Self-Guided Photography Tour: $6.79
  • Hippodrome and Blue Mosque Guided Tour: $8.88
  • Self Guided Virtual Tour of Hagia Sophia The Highlights: $9.97
  • Topkapi Palace with Harem Walking Tour with Guide: $11
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Cruise and Audio Guide App : $13
  • Ferry Tickets for Princes' Island: $13
  • Blue Mosque and Sokullu (inner visits), Istanbul Old City Tours: $14
  • Spectacular Istanbul Self-Guided Audio Tour: $15
  • Istanbul Highlights Self guided scavenger hunt and Walking Tour: $16

Typical Entertainment Prices in Shanghai

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Shanghai are as follows:


  • 30 Minute River Cruise for Two
    $28
  • Zoo for Two
    $14

Tours and Activities in Shanghai

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Shanghai are as follows:

  • The History of the French Concession: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $7.99
  • Shanghai Highlights Walking Tour: $29
  • Shanghai French Concession Walking Tour: $29
  • Shanghai Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $35
  • Shanghai Downtown Hotel to Baoshan Cruise Port:Private with Meet & Greet service: $38
  • Shanghai Hotels to Wusongkou Cruise Port:Private with Meet & Great service: $38
  • Shanghai Wusongkou Cruise Port to Hongqiao Airport:Private with Meet service: $40
  • Fudan University Student Guide Tour: $42
  • Haipai Culture Tour|Shanghai's Past, Present & Future On One Road: $43
  • Shanghai Tower Tickets Booking: $43
  • Oriental Pearl Tower Tickets Booking: $47
  • 4-Hour Sunset Bike Tour in Shanghai: $49

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Istanbul $15
    Shanghai $7.35

Sample the Local Flavors in Istanbul

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Istanbul:

  • #1 Rated Istanbul Party Pub Crawl w Party Bus/Sultanahmet&Taksim: $29
  • Wine Tasting Experience in Istanbul : $50
  • 2-Day Wine Tasting Tour along the Thracian Wine Route: $180


When comparing the travel costs between Istanbul and Shanghai, we can see that Istanbul is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Even though Istanbul is in Europe and Shanghai is in Asia, both of these destinations have relatively similar prices of travel. Generally, the levels of luxury and expenses are the same for these cities even though they are geographically far apart.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Istanbul Expensive? and Is Shanghai Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Istanbul or Shanghai?

Shanghai has a larger population, and is about 31% larger than the population of Istanbul. When comparing the sizes of Istanbul and Shanghai, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.


When is the best time to visit Istanbul or Shanghai?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Istanbul or Shanghai in the Summer?

Both Shanghai and Istanbul are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Many travelers come to Istanbul for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Also, many visitors come to Shanghai in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences.

In the summer, Istanbul is cooler than Shanghai. Typically, the summer temperatures in Istanbul in July average around 24°C (74°F), and Shanghai averages at about 28°C (83°F).

It's quite sunny in Shanghai. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Istanbul. Istanbul usually receives more sunshine than Shanghai during summer. Istanbul gets 333 hours of sunny skies, while Shanghai receives 232 hours of full sun in the summer.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Shanghai. In July, Istanbul usually receives less rain than Shanghai. Istanbul gets 19 mm (0.7 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 128 mm (5 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Istanbul 24°C (74°F) 
    Shanghai 28°C (83°F)

Should I visit Istanbul or Shanghai in the Autumn?

Both Shanghai and Istanbul during the autumn are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Istanbul in the autumn for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area. Also, most visitors come to Shanghai for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

In October, Istanbul is generally cooler than Shanghai. Daily temperatures in Istanbul average around 16°C (61°F), and Shanghai fluctuates around 19°C (65°F).

In the autumn, Istanbul often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Shanghai. Istanbul gets 169 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Shanghai receives 162 hours of full sun.

Istanbul usually gets more rain in October than Shanghai. Istanbul gets 71 mm (2.8 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 61 mm (2.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Istanbul 16°C (61°F) 
    Shanghai 19°C (65°F)

Should I visit Istanbul or Shanghai in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Istanbul and Shanghai. Most visitors come to Istanbul for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months. Also, the winter months attract visitors to Shanghai because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

The weather in Shanghai can be very cold. Istanbul is a little warmer than Shanghai in the winter. The daily temperature in Istanbul averages around 6°C (43°F) in January, and Shanghai fluctuates around 4°C (39°F).

Istanbul usually receives less sunshine than Shanghai during winter. Istanbul gets 75 hours of sunny skies, while Shanghai receives 135 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Istanbul usually receives more rain than Shanghai. Istanbul gets 99 mm (3.9 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Istanbul 6°C (43°F) 
    Shanghai 4°C (39°F)

Should I visit Istanbul or Shanghai in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Istanbul as well as Shanghai. The spring months attract visitors to Istanbul because of the activities around the city and the natural beauty. Also, the activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Shanghai this time of year.

In the spring, Istanbul is cooler than Shanghai. Typically, the spring temperatures in Istanbul in April average around 13°C (55°F), and Shanghai averages at about 15°C (58°F).

In the spring, Istanbul often gets more sunshine than Shanghai. Istanbul gets 180 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Shanghai receives 153 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Shanghai. Istanbul usually gets less rain in April than Shanghai. Istanbul gets 49 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 102 mm (4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Istanbul 13°C (55°F) 
    Shanghai 15°C (58°F)

Typical Weather for Shanghai and Istanbul

Istanbul Shanghai
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 6°C (43°F) 99 mm (3.9 in) 4°C (39°F) 39 mm (1.5 in)
Feb 6°C (44°F) 67 mm (2.6 in) 5°C (41°F) 59 mm (2.3 in)
Mar 8°C (47°F) 62 mm (2.4 in) 9°C (48°F) 82 mm (3.2 in)
Apr 13°C (55°F) 49 mm (1.9 in) 15°C (58°F) 102 mm (4 in)
May 17°C (63°F) 31 mm (1.2 in) 20°C (67°F) 113 mm (4.5 in)
Jun 21°C (71°F) 21 mm (0.8 in) 24°C (75°F) 152 mm (6 in)
Jul 24°C (74°F) 19 mm (0.7 in) 28°C (83°F) 128 mm (5 in)
Aug 24°C (74°F) 26 mm (1 in) 28°C (82°F) 133 mm (5.2 in)
Sep 20°C (69°F) 41 mm (1.6 in) 24°C (75°F) 156 mm (6.1 in)
Oct 16°C (61°F) 71 mm (2.8 in) 19°C (65°F) 61 mm (2.4 in)
Nov 12°C (54°F) 89 mm (3.5 in) 13°C (55°F) 52 mm (2 in)
Dec 9°C (47°F) 122 mm (4.8 in) 7°C (44°F) 35 mm (1.4 in)