Fenghuang – mesmerisingly beautiful

Fenghuang is a picturesque little town situated in the Western Hunan Province and it is, without a doubt, the most amazingly beautiful town I have ever seen.

Fenghuang is Chinese for ‘Phoenix’ and the legend goes that two Phoenixes flew over the town and found it so mesmerisingly beautiful that they never left.

The heart of the village is situated around the Tuo River where time-honoured houses are built on stilts in the emerald green river. Green mountains and an old city wall frame the picture with a colourful pagoda glistening in the horizon.

Tourists (mostly Chinese) have definitely found their way to Fenghuang, and to control the stream of tourism a mandatory entrance ticket has been issued. 10 sites can now only be visited with a ticket that is valid for 2 days.

Walking around the town is just lovely. There are little shops, restaurants and street vendors selling peculiar snacks and home brewed drinks. At night Fenghuang seems to have sold its soul, when the streets of the old town change into a haze of lights with neon lit bars and loud music, which are reminiscent of Thailand’s famous full moon parties but set against the ancient backdrop of this antique town

Just outside the city centre a night market offers street foods of all variety, serving grilled meats, noodles, traditional dishes, dumplings, fried potatoes, vegetables and flat breads. Additionally, Fenghuang houses many restaurants that specialise in Hot Pot.

No doubt you will walk along the river amazed at the beauty of this ancient town, hidden in the mountains but discovered by so many.

Recently Fenghuang has been flooded and great harm has been done. Nonetheless, this town has been on the Unesco World Heritage list since 2008 and truly provides a glimpse into the China of days gone past and is a must on every bucket list.


Read more about the floods HERE

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