As you might have followed my previous blogposts about my trip to Beijing and my 3 days there, you know that the city was a very exhausting one. There is no denying it, that it is beautiful, has a lot of culture and history and I saw so many different things I couldn’t have seen anywhere else, I can be sure that I would never want to live in this city, even if the smog disappeared one day. This also doesn’t mean that I dislike big cities, quite the contrary actually, I really love big cities. I am in love with Shanghai for example, and I could seriously imagine living there, but Beijing was something different. It’s nice for a trip, but that’s all.
If you have missed the posts, you can read about them here:
When I woke up on my fourth day in Beijing, I took my bags, checked out and headed to the train station to catch my early train to Xi’An. The train station was smaller than expected and super busy. There were almost more foreigners than chinese people. I also saw like three travel groups full with german people.
Taking trains in China is so convenient and the prices are pretty good. Way cheaper than the trains here in Germany. That’s one of the things that I miss the most about China.
Anyway, I arrived in Xi’An in the late afternoon. By the time my taxi driver took me to my hostel it was almost early evening. While I was on the train and on the taxi, I was texting my friend Qiqi, who lives in Xi’An. I met her on my travels to Suzhou in September as I posted on this blogpost, and I promised her to visit her in Xi’An before I left China.
She told me that her friend would pick me up and show me around town until she made it out of work.
By the time I got my things inside my dorm room which was huge by the way and very clean and almost empty (only 2 other people with me there), Qiqi’s friend texted me that he arrived and waited in the lobby for me. We planned to go visit the Drum Tower and Bell Tower and then go to the Muslim Street Food Square. I was starving, so this was a great idea.
It was really nice of him to show me around. His english was also quite good, so he could do a little bit of translation between Qiqi and me. Qiqi’s english was around the same level as my chinese. We somehow managed to communicate, even if it was just through smiles, gestures and hugs. But it was nice to somehow be able to communicate with her through her friend.
The Muslim Square actually blew my mind. It was my favourite part about Xi’An, and I would love to return just for the food sold there. They have everything from Kebap, Nut Candies, Muslim noodles, soups, pita-like breads, Fruits, Juices, Milk drinks, Fried stuff, just EVERYTHING! I was so overwhelmed, I didn’t know where to look at and what to eat.
We sat down at a traditional restaurant that sold soups and meat. My friend told me that this place was a very old family restaurant, and all the locals knew about it. I ordered a normal noodle soup, my friend ordered the spicy version and he also ordered a dish made of intestines. He didn’t know that I don’t like intestines, but I tried to see how it tasted. I definitely didn’t like it :D But he appreciated that I tried.
The food was delicious. We continued to roam around the streets a little bit more. I found a stand with the pita-style bread and bought one. It looked yummy, but it tasted a little bit dry.
Then I saw something fried. It was dough filled with vegetables and it looked sooooo yummy! We ordered some, shared it, but could only eat a little bit since it was really oily.
The Street Food market has a lot to offer. I was so full after only 3 dishes, that I could neither eat nor drink anything. I regret not having tried the pomegranate juice and the milk drinks that are really famous here.
I still wanted to buy some boxes of the nut candy though. I love them and I wanted to bring them to Germany so I bought two boxes, one with sesame and one natural.
After that, we finally went to meet Qiqi. She came with our friend’s car which was a Jeep. We then drove to the Wild Goose Pagoda, another famous sight in Xi’An.
Bascially, on that first evening, I saw all the famous sights you can see inside of the city of Xi’An.
We took a lot of pictures there, walked around the square, and even found a park which had funny sculptures to pose with.
It’s one of the best things you can do during your travels: Hanging out with locals who can show you around.
Unfortunately, it was getting quite late already, and I was feeling really sleepy. I had an early start and I had to wake up early the next morning as well, to go see the Terracotta Warriors.
Have you guys ever been to Xi’An? And let me know about your favourite street food you ever had.
Thanks for reading and travelling with me!