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[The List]: Basketball Courts In Shanghai

Welcome to the space jam. Here's some places to shoot hoops and find pick-up games around town.
By Jul 28, 2015 Sports & Recreation


You can find decent pick-up basketball in most Chinese cities. These are just a few of the courts in Shanghai, but we've tested all of these. Most of these court suggestions and stories come from Dave Posner, an American dude from NYC who runs Nike sports camps in Shanghai.

A couple important notes about playing basketball here:

1) People generally play four-on-four half-court to five points. Full court is almost unheard of.

2) People will call "fouls" that are not actually fouls. Get used to it.

3) Don't talk shit and drop snaps like in America -- it's a different culture. And just like anywhere in China, do not, under any circumstances, get into a fight with locals. People will drop down from trees and the heavens above and destroy you. Remember the park fight in that movie KIDS?

Alright let's jam.

1. Luwan Stadium

128 Zhaojiabang Lu, near Shanxi Nan Lu | 肇嘉浜路128号, 近陕西南路

Good outdoor court for half–court pick up with friends. If you're looking for a pick-up game, you can find some some decent athletes with low skill levels, especially in the evenings. Many of the players are high-school / college age. There's also a track and some pull-up bars.

A couple notes about this place, though. If it's been raining, the court gets really dirty and slippery. Also, you’ll need to walk five minutes into main complex (above the Family Mart) to get a ticket. They do not sell tickets on the court, and the grumpy bao an will NOT budge on letting you in without one. They may have balls for rent, but better bring your own.

General Prices: 5rmb per person/hour, or book the whole court for 150rmb/hour
Hours: 9am-9pm
Phone: 6467 0234

2. Xujiahui Park

889 Zhaojiabang Lu, near Tianping Lu | 肇嘉浜路889号, 近天平路

These courts see some of the best pick-up games in Shanghai. Expect a lot of locals standing six feet taller or more, and raining deadly shots. Defense is lacking though and half court games usually go to five, making it hard to get into a rhythm. You just need to call "next" to get on the court. It's always packed on weekends, but occasionally it’s not crowded and you can play some intense five-on-five full court. Locals bring their A–game here and go extra hard when foreigners show up. Do not get into a fight here. The side courts are more for fun and shooting around.

General Prices: Free
Hours: 7am-9pm
Phone: No phone number to call, just bring a ball and play.

3. Shanghai Indoor Stadium — Outdoor Nike Courts

666 Tianyaoqiao Lu, near Lingling Lu | 天钥桥路666号, 近零陵路

Some of the newest, cleanest, and most well-kept courts in Shanghai right here. Usually the locals who play here are lower level or just shooting around. It seems like the more serious players are at the nearby Xujuihui park. However, on weekends, crowds of "fans" form to watch the games when it’s nice out.

You can also rent their fully fenced half-court cages, which have an American inner city feeling. That said, it’s not as rough as the real "no blood no foul" cage in downtown NYC, but still a fun setting to play some pick–up in. Bring your own ball.

General Prices: 10-15rmb per person.
Hours: 9am-10pm
Phone: 6426 6666 - Ext. 7069

4. Shanghai Rucker

58 Huachi Lu, near Jiaotong Lu | 华池路58号, 近交通路

Named after the legendary New York Rucker Park, the Shanghai Rucker has hosted NBA superstars like Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, and Kevin Durant. Courts are usually occupied but to get a game in all you have to do is call "next". The venue has over 18 baskets indoor and outdoor. Super streetball feel with graffiti and classic hip hop over the PA. Good games and serious players.

General Prices: 10rmb deposit, 10rmb/hour with a two–hour minimum charge.
Renting a ball: 100rmb deposit, 10rmb/ball
Hours: 8:30am-10:30pm
Phone: 3223 2001

5. Any International School

The hoops at ECNU

International schools have the nicest courts in town -- especially the high schools. Most schools have private games organized by teachers or the PE department and can usually use a couple extra bodies. So do some networking through your English teacher friends and see if you can get an invite. The skill level ranges from casual to super competitive depending on the school, night, and turn out.

Colleges are also a good bet. East China Normal University (pictured above) and Jiaotong University often have some people playing pick-up, but the skill level varies tremendously.

6. Huashan Green Space a.k.a. The Park By Dada Bar

1500 Huashan Lu, near Fahuazhen Lu | 华山路1500号, 近法华镇路

Hey it's that park by Dada. Just a great place for dog walking, running, lounging (you can lay on the grass here -- just watch out for dog presents), and shooting hoops. The court gets fairly busy in the afternoons and on the weekends, and the players tend to be low to mid level. Bring your own ball, and maybe roll with a few friends.

General Prices: Free
Hours: 8am-8pm (park is open 24/7 but they lock the courts at night)
Phone: Meiyou

7. Xuhui Riverside Park

Longteng Dadao,near Dong'An Lu | 龙腾大道, 近东安路

Ahhhh Xuhui Riverside Park, a.k.a. Xuhui Binjiang Green Space. Great place. They've got a free skatepark, free wall-climbing, a free running track, nice views, and free basketball courts. It's not the busiest court, so you'll want to come down here with some friends, and bring your own ball. But you can really make a day of a trip to this area, with the Long and Yuz museums right around the corner as well.

General Prices: Free
Hours: 9am-10pm
Phone: Meiyou


Know about other courts? Leave 'em in the comments. This list is a work in progress.



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  • 4 years ago Jack.Northern

    Guys, we arrange indoor games every sunday evening. about 20rmb/head indoor half court. our priority is Fairplay and friendship as well. if u guys interested we can discuss via wechat id: capt_ozgur location: PuDong/Lujiazui. Cheers.

  • 4 years ago TSkillet

    there's a bunch of outdoor courts that have sportcourt laid down on them next to Jiangwan Stadium (in Jiangwan - north of Hongkou). Skill level looked decent.

    My biggest pet peeve about playing in China isn't the weak fouls calls, nor the refusal to play full court nor the fact that 4 on 4 is the worst of all basketball games - it's the immediate restart. Hey, check ball. Let the defense get set, ball starts up top.

  • 4 years ago John Mark

    Some nice pick up games at Yanfu Greenland. Lights on till 8pm every night and good runs from 5 onwards. 2 courts (4 half court games) just find the one that has the bigger guys playing and you'll get a decent run.

    Tonji University has 8 courts (16 games). Again just scout for the court the biggest dudes and you'll bound to get a decent run. Lights out at 9-10pm.

    Jingan Sculpture park has a court with some average games there. Closes at 6. I put this here cause it in a nice park and if you chilling family or friends this is a nice place.

    Cnr Taixing/Kanding East rd. This is more for fun if your in the area. Two courts but each the size of a half court (common I've found in some parks) with some decent runs. If your in the area this is cool place to check out, next to the river. Nice little scenery but don't take this place too serious, especially if the three point mark is about the distance of a proper free throw line. 6pm close.

  • 3 years ago michaelbetkier

    Hi guys, I am a 26 years old and I am looking for people to play basketball at evenings. Available any and all evenings. Looking for some relaxed and fun fitness and would love to meet your team! My wechat: MichaelBetkier

  • 10 months ago John E

    They should update this a bit.
    Luwan Stadium has resurfaced their courts and it looks much nicer than the pic. Also, quite good lighting.
    But it's a real mixed bag: some days it's packed, others it's hard to scrounge up a single 3-on-3.
    And the quality really varies. Some days the competition is quite good; other days it's kids who've rarely played.

    My favorite outdoor courts are on Zhejiang Lu in the park South of the Yanan Overhead Highway.
    Pretty good lights (when they turn them all on), friendly hoopsters, decent level of play.
    Only thing bad is lots of guys play ALL DAY, so their effort level isn't greta come evenings when I like to play.
    Side benefit, they are usually happy to take a seat and let me in a game right away.

    I haven't been to Xujiahui much in years, but used to be a lot of fights there. I never had an issue, but got tired of breaking up fights there. Also, the lights are too low, so on some baseline shots you line up a J, and find yourself staring directly into a light. Probably best hoops level outdoors, but due to the lights and fights, I gave up on there.

    The Rucker courts tend to be smallish and sort of dirty. Think I've been to 2 or 3 Ruckers and didn't like any of them. The only Rucker advantage is usually they have both out- and indoor courts if it rains. But then they are even dirtier ...

  • 10 months ago John E

    If any foreigners looking for an indoor game once a week, let me know.
    I might be able to hook you up.

  • 9 months ago Tommoz Unverified User

    Hey John

    Aussie here,
    Can I tag along to some pickup games ?

  • 3 months ago domz Unverified User

    hi. maybe someone can help me find a volleyball court. we are planning to make a day tournament. thanks

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