Jinli Old Street - The First Street of the Shu Kingdom
Located in Chengdu City, Jinli Old Street is called "The First Street of the Shu Kingdom". Originally built as a commercial street during the Shu Kingdom (221 A.D.-263 A.D.), Jinli Old Street was reconstructed in 2004 in the traditional architectural style of Sichuan Province during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Located in the east of the Wuhou Memorial Temple of Chengdu City, Jinli Old Street combines the ambiance of ancient and modern China. Listed in "the ten commercial pedestrian streets of the Nation" in 2005, Jinli Old Street is equivalent to Wangfujing Street in Beijing.
Over 350 meters in length, Jinli Old Street is the concentration of Chengdu city life. Serried along the two sides of Jinli Old Street are buildings built in the style of The Qing Dynasty. The Shop keepers, waiters, and waitresses are all dressed in traditional style clothing, making this street feel to visitors as though they have stepped back in time.
Being one of the oldest commercial streets in China, Jinli Old Street is not only a wonderful reminder of China's past, but also a great place for people to fully appreciate Sichuan's customs, and folk arts. Visitors can try the indigenous foods and snacks while shopping for the showcased handicrafts that Sichuan Province is famous for paper-cutting, clay figurines, and Shu embroidery. In the middle of Jinli Old Street, a wooden stage has been constructed. Specially designed to showcase local performances loved for centuries in Chengdu, this stage is a popular meeting place for locals. Some of the most popular performances are the local shadow puppet and the local Sichuan Opera performances. They are performed just as they have been for centuries.
For people interested in Chinese food, and Sichuan's local snacks, Jinli Old Street is the perfect place to sample them. Famous local dishes such as Kung Pao Chicken (stir-fried chicken with chili and peanuts), Mapo Tofu (stir-fried Tofu in hot sauce), and the other quintessential dishes can be found here. Sichuan foods are famous for their spiciness, but they are not just spicy, they are delicious and addicting. Very few people who visit this part of China leave without becoming hooked. Along with local foods, there are many bars, cafes, and teahouses located along Jinli Old Street offering the perfect combination of ancient and modern cultures. The majority of these places are furnished with traditional details and furniture, yet with all of the modern conveniences. These shops are the perfect place to take a break, rest, and soak up the local culture.
Successful in attracting tourists from home and abroad every year, Jinli Old Street's reputation is spreading all over the world. Reflecting both the diversity and integration of Sichuan customs and folklore, Jinli Old Street is a must-see location in not only Chengdu but China as a whole.
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