• Take a guided walking tour of Guangzhou’s standout food vendors and markets
• Bicycle along the breezy banks of the Pearl River
• Nourish your health with herbal medicinal tonics
Even as the city and its environs grow ever more cosmopolitan, with new residents and visitors arriving from across China and around the world, Guangzhou remains “a living museum of Cantonese culture,” to quote the team behind the excellent tour outfit Eating Adventures. The company offers several food-themed walking and biking tours in Guangzhou (they also operate in Hong Kong and Shanghai, if you’re headed to either city), and we’ve been consistently impressed by their itineraries, their regional knowledge, and especially their guides, all of whom speak fluent English and Cantonese. Our favorite tour: a wander around the tantalizing residential district of Haizhu with Eating Adventures’ founder Zhou Wai, a charming local woman with a seemingly boundless appetite. You’ll meet at 10 a.m. at Binjiang Dong Lu, one of Guangzhou’s largest “wet markets”, with an abundance of butchers, fishmongers, and greengrocers. Over the next few hours, Wai will lead you to her favorite food vendors and guide you through the options. You’ll taste sensational wonton noodle soup, unerringly tender beef brisket, and made-on-the-spot changfen (steamed rice sheets), and recharge with a restorative, double-steamed soup based on Traditional Chinese Medicine principles. Wai will also take you to the Haizhu branch of Dian Dou De, the fantastic Guangzhou dim sum chain (see the 1-hour itinerary “Dim Sum and Then Some”). Note that tours typically involve a mix of walking and bicycling—you can opt for walking only if you’re not comfortable on a bike—and they’re decidedly child- and teen-friendly. You should definitely skip breakfast before the tour, and you probably won’t want a big dinner afterward, either.
The Conrad concierge can confirm tour availability, prices, timings, and exact meeting points with Eating Adventures, or you can visit the company’s website (see below) to book a tour directly. A minimum of two persons is required, and tours last 3.5 to 4 hours, not including travel time to and from the neighborhood.
EATING ADVENTURES TOURS: +86-186-8838-0352; email: firstname.lastname@example.org; eatingadventures.com