Experiencia de Beijing de noche en el mercado de Donghuamen Street

2013-04-21 16:35 ChineseTime

Before you come to Beijing, you surely have heard of the Forbidden City, the Great Wall, or the Summer Palace, and the alike. While Beijing, a city of abundant historical treasures, also has a dynamic night life. The street market is a part of this unique night culture of Beijing Tours. Donghuamen night market, down-town located north of the famous Wangfujing pedestrian promenade, is one of the most popular night markets that collects various snacks from all around China. If you are going to Travel to Beijing, add Donghuamen to your list of the “must-see” besides those antique sightseeings!

Speaking of the origin of Donghuamen night market, its history traces back to the Donghuamen market thirty years ago, even before the neighborhood of Wangfujing became a commercial center of this city. Dubbed as the best gourmet street in Beijing, Donghuamen enjoyed high reputation among both native “Beijingers” and tourists. The street opens at around 4:00 PM everyday beginning with the stalls along the street setting up. The turnover reaches the highest at 7 or 8 PM as the street becomes more and more crowded in the evening.

What makes Donghuamen distinct from other street markets is the great diversity of its foods. There are a wide variety of foods available, from scorpions to seahorses. By all means come here and eat the scorpion, the sea star, the seahorse, the chicken hearts, the cow stomach, the shark, the silk worm, the centipede, the octopus tentacles on a stick and all that good stuff.Explore the limits of your taste buds or courage at least. You will find many animals not on western menus. Bugs to snakes but there are also many of vegetables, fruits, and chicken available. Don’t worry about the cat and dog, those are actually delicacies and it would not be substituted for any kind of cheap meat. There are more to eat than just fried insects, and unmentionable creatures. Most of them are fried and oily. Some of the stall selling beef balls and fish balls in soup and it’s delicious and healthy. If you are a vegetarian, don’t worry! Lots of cut up fruit too! They string the fruits on a stick and coat with candy. It is easier to fall for the haw par fruit (or the Chinese calls it San Char or Bing Tang Hu Lu—crystalized sugar coated haws). Whilst the prices are higher than in many other street markets in Beijing, the food looked a much better quality and also very fresh. This place is a safe bet for some good food, and the prices are still comparatively low by western standards.

Donghuamen night market is not only a great way to try a variety food but also a good location you can hang around at downtown Beijing, stalls lined next to each other with anything you could want to try in China. There are some shops to explore around the market that are more brand names and not the knock off shops. If you can’t find something to eat here, there are options around the market.

The market can be seen in a mere fifteen minutes and the pictures are worth it as well as the experience of eating your first beetle. We explored this interesting market one night. Although we opted against trying the Seahorse kabobs, it was a great photo opportunity and worthwhile gastronomic adventure.

No Beijing Tours are complete without a trip and an adventure down a food street!

By--Nicholas Chou

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