Chinese GP Travel guide

Chinese Grand Prix 2017

The second race of the season sees the team travel to the Far East for the first of our back-to-back races this year.

Find out how the team navigate to one of the biggest and brightest cities in the world, Shanghai. 

City: Shanghai

Time zone: GMT +8

Population: 13.4 million

Photo credit: @fernandoalo_oficial

How far?

Shanghai is 5,723 miles from the McLaren Technology Centre.

Getting there

Every member of the team flew back to the UK after the Australian Grand Prix. There are plenty of flight options from London to Shanghai, with the major airlines flying twice daily to the Chinese city.  

“China and Bahrain are back-to-back races,” says Clare Martin, Head Race & Test Co-Ordinator. “You have to think about the welfare of the individuals in the race team, who would have spent six weeks away from home if they’d stayed away between all three opening races. Better to bring them home for a few days”

Biggest travel headache?

Visas. The Chinese authorities have changed their passport photo requirements this year, which meant having to re-shoot all team personnel photos.

Surprising fact

Shanghai is the world’s busiest seaport. It’s also an up-and-coming cruise ship destination, with the Huangpu River carrying tourists into the centre of the city.

Local speciality

Sugar, which is used generously in local cuisine. It won’t come as a surprise to discover that more sugar is consumed in Shanghai than any other city in China.

When in Rome…

Enjoy being driven. To drive a car in China you need a Chinese driving licence and while it’s relatively easy to obtain a provisional licence, McLaren prefers to hire a car with a driver. Progress is usually slow: a recent study revealed that Shanghai has the worst rush-hour jams of any major city in China. 


The race is one week earlier than last year, but the temperature is expected to be similar. The forecast is for a dry race weekend, with the ambient temperature expected to peak at 21 degrees.

Top tips from our local Hilton Concierge 

Your inside information on Shanghai, brought to you by our partner, Hilton

Where is the best place place to relax in the city?
Jing An Park

What is the top tip for people visiting Shanghai?
Enjoying the vibrant night life. There are plenty of cocktail bars and popular music venues to choose from. 

Where would you find the best view of Shanghai?
Lu Jia Zui, in the Pudong area.

Any top recommendtions on where the McLaren-Honda team should eat one night?
There are a wide range of restaurants available in the city that cater for all tastes. For those preferring non-spicy foods I would highly recommend the Xi’s Garden Restaurant for traditional Shanghainese cuisine. For spicy food the Pichuan Sichuan cuisine is ideal. Another famous restaurant in Shanghai is the Ding Tai Feng, known for serving traditional Chinese cuisine and voted as best restaurant for Shanghainese Xiao Long Bao by New York Times.

What national dish must be tried when in Shanghai?
Shanghai pork Dumpling

Describe Shanghai in 3 words
Multi-cultural, dynamic, motivated