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Shanghai's 3D Magic Fun House — Is it all just an illusion?

Shanghai 3D Magic Fun House3D Magic

Shanghai’s 3D Magic Fun House boasts of being the first of its kind in China.

With novelty and fantasy combined as one, Shanghai 3D Magic Fun House brings visitors a grand visual feast through special acoustic and lighting effects, where the Magic Paintings, the Magic Rooms, and the Magic Furniture allow visitors to experience personally a scene of both reality and illusion.


Shaking hands with Chairman Mao 3D painting, Shanghai 3D Magic Fun HouseShaking hands with Chairman Mao 3D painting, Shanghai 3D Magic Fun House

Shanghai 3D Magic Fun House has several themes, such as Cubic Magic, Ocean Exploration, Fun Exaggeration, and Bringing in Wealth and Luck.

The funny 3D paintings are entertaining. All the 3D artistic paintings are designed and drawn by artists from South Korea. 

They have a magical effect owing to their vivid painting techniques, which are very popular in South Korea, Japan, and Taiwan, and represent the current world fashion in 3D art.

Entering the house you’ll see visitors of all ages experiencing the magic charm of 3D paintings, while wowing and laughing. You’re allowed to take photos.

What is it?

Incredibly cleverly drawn artwork on the walls and floor of this optical illusion house allow you to take pictures of yourself in 40+ different scenarios, both real and imaginary, with your own camera. Opened in  July 2013.

Will I like it?

— Section authored first hand by China Highlights customer, Lynne Buddin

I defy anyone not to! Sam Gusway from Off Beat's Smart Shanghai's column describes the Fun House as a "Trompe L'oeil Wonderland", adding he took some really cool photos for social media. The 3D Gallery provides the illusions, drawn by Korean artists, you make the magic with how you interact with it.

We visited Guilin's underground version of the 3D gallery in 2014, and had a really enjoyable 2 hours there. Once staff had pointed out the framed illustration beside every painting, and what stance you should take up beside each different area, we were on it.

We made up our own quirky positions, even staff were laughing at our antics; - running from the Incredible Hulk, crossing a rope bridge to avoid a fire-breathing dragon, popping up through an ice hole surprising a polar bear, then destroying the Mona Lisa or shaking President Barack Obama's hand. Where else can you do all that in one day?

Why was it not busy?

In school time it wasn't busy, maybe they assumed we have these places all over the Western world, staff had no English so could not encourage us to come in, but I haven't come across them. If this was in London it would be 3 times the price. Nothing was translated, but honestly, it really isn't necessary.

Why not have it in your home?

Employing artist's capable of conveying the 3D effect, you could actually have a scene in your house. Your imagination is the only limit; - your sofa could be over a giant canyon, a lake full of fish in your bathroom, maybe a shark with an open mouth on your lift floor! 

Top 3D Magic Fun House Tips

1. Allow 1-2 hours on a wet or very hot day; or maybe an evening as an activity to do along with the street markets, shops, and dinner.

2. It's a great fun attraction, suitable for families, couples, a "selfie" single, or groups.

3. You use your own camera, so ensure you have plenty of spare batteries and your mobile's fully charged.

4. Locals love it too. Most Chinese have a great sense of humour, especially when it comes to physical comedy or making a fool of themselves and friends at a show or in photos. The artwork is changed when it wears out or becomes outdated, i.e. Change of Presidents, so return visits are ok.

5. Be aware, it may seem strange to us, but locals may want to take photos of you the 3D show. If you don't want them to, just say "No". They are just intrigued to see Westeners messing about.

6. This activity is bang on trend right now because of the rise of selfie's everywhere and the face changing apps available. It makes for a great holiday e-card for kids to send to their friends too.

Travel Essentials

Shanghai 3D Magic Fun HouseShanghai 3D Magic Fun House

Open: 8:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

  • Location: 300 East Zhongshan Road, Huangpu District (see Shanghai maps)
  • Metro: Subway Line 2 to Lujiazui for the Sightseeing Tunnel.
  • Bus: 21, 37, 55, 65, 82, 85, 583, or 872 to the Bund Sightseeing Tunnel Stop
  • Easy to find:The Shanghai 3D Magic Funhouse is at the end of The Bund Sightseeing Tunnel, on the same side as the Oriental Pearl T.V. Tower.

Save money and time: Shanghai’s 3D Funhouse entrance can apparently be bought along with the Sightseeing tunnel at a discounted price for a “bundle”.

Low cost: 80 yuan per person.

Nearby attractions: the Bund, the Oriental Pearl Tower, and Nanjing Road.

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