Ancient cultural relics, martial arts
and captivating nature
With at least 3,500 years of history, Zhengzhou is one of China’s oldest cities. Ruins of this ancient Shang Dynasty city’s walls are a reminder to locals of a storied past. Carved bone figurines and vessels from the bronze foundries which survived the city’s extensive WWII bombing are on show in the pyramid-shaped Henan Museum.
Bustling shopping malls and upmarket fashion boutiques cluster along Dunmu Road north of the train station, although the shopping is at its most fervent at sleeker mega-malls like The Mixc. There are plenty of delightful Chinese craftworks from the local area on sale too, such as Miyu jade jewellery and delicate lacquerware handicrafts.
The powerful Yellow River flows past the north of the city and in the Scenic Area, Zhengzhou’s prettiest park, you can marvel at the two huge carved stone heads and amble along forest paths. Zhengzhou People’s Park is a calm oasis in the city frequented by locals, and a great place to wander through the bamboo forest to work up an appetite. Sample local cuisine, like lǐ yú bèi miàn, baked carp with noodles, or the more typical dish of hui mian noodles, from one of the city’s many restaurants or street food vendors. Zhengzhou is surrounded by picturesque mountains such as Songshan, one of the Five Great Mountains of China. Nearby, enduring Chinese culture originated at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Shaolin Monastery, which is set amid rolling verdant hills. The martial art of kung fu was created here and Chan Buddhist monks continue to practise the discipline under the ornately painted eaves. Zhengzhou hosts the Shaolin Wushu Festival, drawing kung fu practitioners from across the globe.