Beachside charm, island trips
and delicious street food
With its coastal location, life in the island city of Xiamen is all about the water – whether it’s a ferry ride away to nearby islands or simply admiring the views from the shore. Reconnect with its relaxed seaside spirit on a waterfront cycle ride, or spend a leisurely afternoon on the beach with friends and family.
Brush off the sand and stroll towards Zhenzhu Bay Garden to admire the beautiful plantings overlooking the sea. In the evening, breathe in the fresh air on the harbour front, taking in the sight of shimmering lights on the city skyline. Xiamen shows off its varied characters through a contrast of sleek downtown skyscrapers with bohemian wooden villas around the university campus.
A diversity of architecture can also be seen on the island of Gulang Yu. Culturally and historically significant, it is a favourite day trip for both locals and visitors, who like to wander among its eclectic mix of European colonial and Southeast Asian buildings and museums. Take time to explore the sea caves, then climb up to the observation deck on Sunlight Rock for island views, while ethereal Chinese zither music floats up from the tropical gardens below.
Fresh, tasty and authentically Xiamen, the city’s street food forms a key part of its identity and culture. At breakfast, find your way to the Eighth Seafood Market, located in Lujiang Residential District, for peanut soup and sticky rice to kick start the day. And always make room for more street food in Xiamen, with local specialties including oyster omelettes, seaweed spring rolls and fish ball soup.