10 great places to eat in China

By Hui Luo

If you are on diet right now, I would suggest you close this window. Some of the dishes I’ll be covering in this article are very difficult to say ‘No’ to.

When talking about the places to eat in Mainland China, Beijing and Shanghai might be the first places that come to mind if you are a foreigner. But there are 34 provinces and autonomous regions in China offering all kinds of delicacies. So this article will show you the top 10 places to eat in Mainland China outside Beijing and Shanghai. Most of these places are famous for their street food.

1. Chengdu (Sichuan Province)
Chengdu is a wonderful place for spice lovers. The taste of spice in Sichuan Province is different from any other place in the world. It has a flavor like pepper and chili which stimulates your appétit. It is famous for various cakes and noodles, such as steamed cake, Sichuan noodles with pepper sauce and boneless chicken with heavy seasoning and tofu pudding.

2. Xinjiang (the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region)
If you like meat, especially beef and lamb, check out Xinjiang, which has a lot of meat dishes. Xinjiang is in the northeast of China. Due to its specific landscape and climate there are only a few vegetable dishes in this area. If you have a chance to come here, you have to try the Xinjiangnese dishes on their plains around the camp fire, such as roasted whole goat, Tintin fried noodles and lamb shashlik.

Pic: AP.

3. Hangzhou ( Zhejiang Province)
Do you enjoy a midnight snack? If you do, Hangzhou should be top of your list. We all know that if you want to lose weight you would better to leave out the midnight snack, a difficult thing to do in Hangzhou. There are three excellent midnight snack peddlers in Hangzhou, A San (famous for beef starch noodles), Xiao Zhao (famous for Wonton) and Banchuan Wang (famous for shredded meat mixed noodles).

4. Xi’an (Shanxi Province)
Huimin Street is the most famous food street in Xi’an. It is located around the Xi’an Drum Tower and still keeps its Ming dynasty wall. Huimin Street is about 500 meters long and contains all the special foods in Xi’an. Most of the foods here are from the Hui Nationality (one of the minority regions in China). Mutton and bread pieces in soup, persimmon cakes and shortcakes are your first choices here.

5. Guangzhou (Guangdong Province)
When we are talking about the food of Southern China, there is no doubt that Guangzhou is the best city to taste Cantonese food. Guangzhou has a high reputation for its cooking style. No matter what kinds of ingredients, there is a specific way to prepare it.

6. Lijiang (Yunnan Province)
Yunnan Province is famous for stir-fried rice noodles, steamed pot chicken and different kinds of wild mushrooms. In Lijiang, you can not only find these meals, but also local delicacies such as chickpea bean jelly, naxi roasted fish and Lijiang stuffed bun. Another dish you cannot miss here is hot pot. There are various hot pot ingredients, including potato chicken, ribs, goat, and so on.

Pic: AP.

7. Yangzhou (Jiangsu Province)
Yangzhou has an excellent natural landscape. It is said that enjoying a cup of Chinese tea in teahouses is a routine lifestyle for people living in Yangzhou. You can randomly pop in a teahouse in Yangzhou, and take your time to get a feel for Yangzhou culture.

8. Tianjin (Tianjin Municipality)
Most people know of Tianjin because it is near the capital Beijing, but seldom will know about the Tianjin delicacies to be found there, many of which go back over 300 years. Their dishes taste fresh and salty. There are several food streets for you to walk around, such as Southern Food Street, Heping District Flavored Street and October Food Street.

9. Haikou (Hainan Province)
Desserts are usually served after main courses, but they are served as starters in Hainan Province. In Hainan, desserts are as important as main courses, people can’t live without desserts. The common desserts are Nourish Cool, Qiankong Cake and Yan Highland Barley. You can have coffee or tea with these delicious snacks.

10. Xiamen (Fujian Province)
In Xiamen, delicacies are related to some specific people or areas. In other words, these people or areas are the best chefs to make specific food. For example, Huang Zehe’s Peanut Soup, Wu Tang’s Satay Noodles and Lianhuan’s Samte Oyster. They are located in different parts of Xiamen. It is better for you to spend a while walking around Xiamen, so you can enjoy all these delicacies.