Welcome to Fuzhou!
Fuzhou, China, is the capital of Fujian province, and just like its Chinese name implies, this is a city full of good fortune. With over 50 historical sites, a population heavily dominated by the Han people who live in harmony with over 20 ethnic minorities, an advantageous geographical environment with a pleasant climate, thriving commerce, unspoiled folk customs, and splendid civilization, Fuzhou is a city that keeps on giving!
Those who only associate the city with Fuzhou fish balls are missing out because here’s a complete itinerary to show you some of the town’s most beautiful spots. This insider’s guide will help you make the most of your visit while getting your money’s worth.
Worldwide Local Tip: Finding SIM cards in the city can be somewhat challenging, and most times, you will be required to make a commitment of at least 2 months’ usage. Make sure to get one from the vending machine at the airport after you arrive.
Can’t Miss Neighborhoods
Sanfang Qixiang, Fuzhou’s cultural center, also known as 3 lanes and 7 alleys, is the perfect place to get an introduction to Fuzhou’s history and culture. Wander the alleys, enjoying the Fuzhou weather. The historic enclave here is characterized by architecture preserved from the Qing and Ming dynasties. Follow the lanes and alleys, and they will lead you off to a famous shopping street, where you can shop for silk and other traditional products, or dine at a McDonalds or Starbucks disguised as ancient inns from the 16th century.
For the best food in Fuzhou, Student Street or Shilin Market is the place to go. Student Street, although called a street, is actually many roads, all connected together to combine one of the best places to shop in Fuzhou. The market has everything you could desire, from clothes to souvenirs, art, and more. With an abundance of street vendors and local restaurants, there is an endless world of culinary treats to explore. Student Street is located near a university, which means that the prices are lower than anywhere else in the city. It’s open every night.
Worldwide Local Tip: If you want to splurge or simply window shop, the city boasts of many luxurious department stores that you can visit such as Rainbow, Oriental, and Ocean grand stores. All these stores carry popular international brands and other high-end goods that you can get at discounted prices, especially during holiday sales, when the rush for the best deals will make you feel like you’re at the Fuzhou Zoo!
For the Nature Lover
When you get tired of the hustle and bustle of Fuzhou, West Lake Park provides you an oasis of lush grass and trees in the middle of the city to relax. The park, by far, is the best-preserved classical garden in the town, with a history of more than 1,700 years. It’s exemplarily beautiful in spring when the flowers are in bloom. Strolling along the walkways in the park, while you enjoy the calligraphy works or paintings created by the ancient people. You can also take a rest in a pavilion, or go on a boat on the lake.
Fuzhou and its surroundings are blessed with volcanic water that has rejuvenating properties, for both your body and mind. A popular place highly recommended by locals and expats alike is Gui’An Hot Spring Resort, where a fantastic selection of over 50 types await you. Put the healing properties of ancient Chinese herbs, flowers, milk, and even wine baths to the test, and conclude with some eccentric offerings, like volcanic grit tubs and fish baths.
Worldwide Local Tip: The city offers a wide range of salons at different rates. You may choose between various kinds of massage: Chinese, oil, Thai, acupuncture, and many others. Just be careful which hot spring you select. They’re so popular that some hotels claim to have a hot spring when really it’s just a communal bath. These are obviously not as good as the real thing.
A Famous Delicacy
This guide would be incomplete if we didn’t mention Fuzhou’s famous fish balls. There is no place better for your introduction to the city’s delicacy than Yong He Fishballs, whose 100-year-old recipe is very popular along Nan Hou Street. The most authentic Fuzhou fish balls are very different from the ones you will find elsewhere. The exterior is more doughy than bouncy, and when bitten into, its smooth mochi-like texture gives way to a well-marinated minced pork center, flavored like the savory sauce used in Zha Jiang Mian.
Worldwide Local Tip: If you are confused about which food to go for, kick start your sampling with the Wu Fu Lin Men, a combo of fish balls and dumplings made with eel, shark, mackerel meat, among other varieties.
Enjoy Your Visit to Fuzhou, Fujian!
Never pass up a cheap flight to Fuzhou. Close enough to the big, fast-paced cities for weekend trips, yet far enough away from the tourist traps, Fuzhou grants worldwide local access to a unique view of the locals and their culture.