Mountain hikes, a kite festival and
locally harvested tea
Pingu offers ample opportunities for escaping to the stunning countryside on the city’s doorstep. Chashan Scenic Area’s boisterous monkey population lures wildlife lovers, while frozen waterfalls and mountain paths attract hikers regardless of the season. Slightly further afield, the imposing mountain of Dazeshan is covered with vineyards on its lower slopes, while the higher reaches have steep, challenging trails and rewarding countryside views.
After an exhilarating excursion, you can relax with a cup of locally grown Laoshan green tea at one of the many teahouses in Pingdu’s centre, and particularly clustered along Hangzhou Road. Locals are justifiably proud of their region’s nationally recognised produce. Pingdu grapes are so prized that there’s an annual Grape Festival near Dazeshan during the summer harvest.
Pingdu’s proximity to bountiful farmland makes dining out a memorable experience. Restaurants specialising in Shandong cuisine serve steaming bowls of shuǐjīng zhǒuzi stewed pork, or delicacies like bào chǎo yāo huā, stir-fried pig kidneys. If you’re dining with a crowd, you may prefer eateries offering pan-Chinese classics like huŏguō hotpot with fresh vegetables, which are best shared with friends and family.
In the spring, keep an eye on Pingdu’s skyline for colourful kites soaring on the breeze, especially around peaceful green spaces, like Xianhe Park, along the Xian river. Neighbouring city Weifang is believed to be the place where kites were invented, and people flock to the area in April for the annual Weifang International Kite Festival.