Many people may not know about Hengdian World Studios (Hengdian yingshicheng 横店影视城), but it is a National AAAAA tourist attraction located in Dongyang, Zhejiang. Hengdian World Studios has replicas of palaces used for filming costume and era dramas and movies. It includes several scenic areas, including Dream Valley (Menghuan gu 梦幻谷), The Palace of Emperor Qin (Qin wanggong 秦王宫), Qing Ming Shang He Tu (清明上河图), Guangzhou Street + Hong Kong Street (Guangzhou jie Xianggang jie 广州街香港街), Palace of Ming and Qing Dynasties (MingQing gongyuan 明清宫苑), The Dream Bund (Meng waitan yingshi zhuti gongyuan 梦外滩影视主题公园), New Yuanmingyuan (Yuanmingxinyuan 圆明新园), Dreamful Spring Valley (Mengquangu wenquan dujiaqu 梦泉谷温泉度假区), and The Rocky Grotto (Ping yandong 屏岩洞). In this article, I will provide some details about how I planned my trip to Hengdian, including the costs of the trip. Of course, some of the details may be subject to change, so you must adjust accordingly.

First, you need to get to Hengdian. From Shanghai, take the train to Yiwu. (The costs may vary, but I spent 123 RMB to get there.) There is not an airport or train station in Dongyang, the city that Hengdian is actually located in. From Yiwu, there is an hour taxi ride to the hotel, if you book a hotel near one of the sites. The Yiwu train station closes at 11:00 p.m., so I would recommend getting to Yiwu at an earlier time if possible. If you arrive at night, you can sleep at the hotel for one night and then begin your adventures the next day. The hotel that we stayed at was 372 RMB per person (5 nights, free breakfast, 2 people per room). I would recommend booking a hotel that is close to one of the sites because there is no metro in the town. There are mopeds that you can rent, which I think is similar to bike rentals in Shanghai, but I did not try it because I don’t know how to drive a moped.

On the first day, we bought tickets for 3 days (4 sites + Dream Valley), meaning that you can spread out your time at the sites between the 3 days. There are also other options for tickets based on what you want to do. If you are a foreigner, you have to buy the tickets at the counter using your passport because there is not a passport option on the mini program, and you are unable to buy them at the hotel. With your student ID booklet, this type of ticket is 440 RMB. If you do not have a student id booklet, you can try to use your NYU ID card. If that doesn’t work, you have to buy the adult ticket, which is 550 RMB.

The hotel I stayed at was near The Palace of Emperor Qin (open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), so we went there the first day. If you want to be dressed in Hanfu, there are many stores near the area where you can rent the outfit for the day. I did not dress up, but my friend Xuan Lin (class of 2026) dressed up and told me that it cost her 100 RMB to rent the outfit for the whole day, 50 RMB for doing hair, and 50 RMB for doing makeup. There are also opportunities to dress up inside the sites and get pictures, but it may be more expensive. If you choose to dress up, I would recommend that you allot adequate time for that because it may take a while, especially if multiple people are doing it. 

After finishing our journey at The Palace of Emperor Qin, we went to get lunch outside the site at a restaurant. There are many restaurants in the area with the names “Mom’s Kitchen” or “Grandma’s Kitchen” with very similar food, so the restaurant owners may come up to you and “invite” you to eat at their restaurant. There are also some restaurants inside the sites. However, both food inside the sites and food outside the sites are not very good in my opinion.

Next, we went to Dream Valley (open from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.), which is an amusement park with many thrilling rides. Dream Valley is within walking distance of The Palace of Emperor Qin as well as our hotel. There were a lot of shows, which is also true of the other sites as well, so you have to pay attention to the show times if you want to watch them.

On the second day, we went to the Palace of Ming and Qing Dynasties (open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.). We had to take a taxi there because it was not a walkable distance from our hotel. This site is really big, but you can rent a bicycle if you don’t want to walk as much. The bicycle cost around 280 RMB, which was 56 RMB when split between 5 people. This palace is a replica of the Forbidden City (Gugong 故宫), which is located in Beijing, but is smaller than the Forbidden City.

After that, we went to Guangzhou Street + Hong Kong Street (open from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.), which is a walkable distance from the Palace of Ming and Qing Dynasties. You can dress up in qipao, which is also available inside the site.

On the third day, we went to Qing Ming Shang He Tu (open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), which was a walkable distance from the hotel. At this site, there is an event that gives you an opportunity to act as an extra for free. The director tells you what to do, and they also provide costumes. If you want to act as a main character, you can pay around 150 RMB. Another thing to note is that there is a show at this site with an auction for an umbrella with many celebrities’ signatures and also a mystery box, which apparently has a celebrity’s signature. However, I saw online that you can find these items at the Guangzhou Street + Hong Kong Street gift shop.

On the fourth day, we explored Lu Residential Complex (Luzhai 卢宅), which is not part of Hengdian, but it is in the same city of Dongyang. The student ticket for this was 35 RMB. Next, we went to Dongyang Museum (Dongyang bowuguan 东阳博物馆), which is a small museum with free admission. Dongyang is known for woodcarving, so both of these locations displayed some beautiful wood carvings.

Overall, the cost for the entire trip, including food, was less than 2000 RMB.