Kaifeng is a city in Henan Province. It was the capital of several dynasties but now it seems like it is a city, whose former glory has been long forgotten.
Or did you actually hear about it yet?
Well maybe you should look it up^^, even Marco Polo went there 😉
I actually never planed to go there, but after me being stuck in Qingdao, the only train ticket I was able to book on Ctrip went to Kaifeng, which is relatively close to Dengfeng (just a 3 hour Bus drive).
So it was on the way and I figured why not^^
Actually I was surprised how much you can do in Kaifeng and gotta say I kinda like this city, not just because there was loads of street food (more to that topic in my next post 😉 ).
So what can you do there?
Well head for the lake inside of the city center, which is surrounded by a huge city wall.
Around the lake are several museums and I decided to go to the Kaifeng Prefecture. I thought it was kinda interesting because I actually learned more about ancient Chinese Law in this museum, then what I learned at University in Shanghai. Funny huh-.-
But it’s not just for the history cracks. The buildings are adorable, in the summertime you will often find actors recreating scenes from ancient china and the pagoda in the back gives you an amazing view over the whole city.
You can check out the prisons, where they made some lovely pictures of the most used torture methods (Maybe not for little kids xD ).
Admission for Adults is 50 Rmb. I think I paid 25 Rmb with my student card.
But the money was well spent, you can easily spent over an hour in there, just the English translations are sometimes missing. But that’s a problem you will find in many chinese cities away from the big tourist hotspots of Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong.
After that I was thinking to maybe check out the millenium park, but decided to just stroll around in that area and to have a look at the old buildings instead. The park is supposed to be gorgeous in the summer, with lots of shows and acts going on, but in winter, it is kinda dead…so why should I go there?
Instead I headed back to the Hostel after my stroll, because I was frozen solid and really needed to warm up a bit.
Kinda sad that I couldn’t check out the Iron Pagoda, but I was tired and cold, so my semi-warm Hostel room sounded a lot better.
Kaifeng definitely isn’t the prettiest city and many of the old buildings really need some renovating, but it is has a certain charm. The city feels real. Hard to explain =/
In the evening I forced myself to get out of my warm bed again (the only thing that was warm) and took the bus back into the city.
Because in the evening the street food paradise opens up 😉 That’s actually what Kaifeng is famous nowadays.
There are many markets spread over the city, the biggest one is close to the old city parts and even has tables to sit down on and prices are written everywhere, which was so refreshing because they didn’t even try to charge extra…gosh it is great to not have to wonder once whether you get the real price or not 😀
And the food was awesome you can find a bit of everything there ^^
I gotta say I maybe will go there again if I have the chance, just for the markets…I love eating myself through the city 😉
And Kaifeng definitely is worth a visit, if you are interested to see how live in China can be…a bit rough, advancing and always developing, but not quite there and with lots of tiny little gems.
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