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As China continues its rapid economic expansion, there could be no better time for BA to launch Chengdu as a new destination. One of the country’s largest cities, the capital of Sichuan Province is an important business hub. But, says Emily Chu, when work is done, there is plenty to make you consider staying on for a day or two…
Begin the session with a chef-led market tour to select ingredients, then head to the chef’s home and learn how to create jiachangcai (homestyle) dishes.
Take in outdoor Sichuan Opera at Shu Feng Ya Yun, located inside the Culture Park in the Qingyang District. Traditional acts like fire breathing and shadow puppetry are performed, but the art of spilt-second mask changing is particularly intriguing.
Discover Qing Dynasty architecture at Kuan Zhai Alley composed of Kuan (wide), Zhai (narrow) and Jing (well) alleys.
Wuhou District’s Shu Jiu Xiang hotpot is renowned for its nine section soup base. Dunk over 30 kinds of vegetable and meat options into the concoction infused with fiery Sichuan peppercorns.
Saunter through an alley off Niu Wang Miao Street to Qiang Go Go between 4pm to midnight for Chengdu’s best street food. Look out for meat skewers served with sweet potato noodles.
At the Two Immortals Monastery, monks offer soothing chants during your visit to the Qing Yang Temple, near the Jinjiang River. Legend has it this is the birthplace of Lao Tzu, the founder of Taoism.
Join the crowds at dawn in a taiji session at the Wuhou District’s Wangjianglou Park, which pays tribute to Chengdu’s famed poets.
Buddhist monks have brewed sweet Zhu Ye Qing green tea leaves on nearby Mt. Emei for centuries. At the Wukuaishi Tea Market, northwest of the train station, buy tea to take home.
Just 30 minutes southeast of the city centre is San Sheng Xiang, where a nongjiale experience includes homestyle cuisine. The markets across from the XYL Museum of Modern Art show why this cluster of villages is nicknamed Flower Town.
As well as giant pandas, the Wolong National Nature Reserve, at the foot of the Tibetan Plateau, 130km away from Chengdu, is home to the Qiang ethnic minority. Accept a welcome into their homes to learn about their traditional lifestyles.