The Best Places For Muslims to Travel to in China
- On January 25, 2017
- By Shannon Ullman
- In General
Traveling as a Muslim can be tough. With restrictions when it comes to food, transport, and life in general, Muslims may be deterred from satisfying their travel urges. While China is not actually a Muslim country, there are huge sects of Muslim populations living within its borders offering plenty of Halal food and Mosques to be visited. If you are a Muslim traveler and wish to visit China, here are the best places for you to go.
As the first Chinese city to properly be introduced to Islam, Xi’an has become quite a hub for Muslim travelers and residents. In fact, one of the city’s main attractions is its Muslim Quarter. If you are wandering around this area, make sure to do it on an empty stomach as the streets are lined with Halal restaurants and tiny food carts wielding epically delicious snacks. Grab a hot bowl of noodle soup, skewered cake, hearty bread and dried fruits. There is also a large Mosque located in this area that makes a fantastic tourist site, just for the architecture alone.
Many of China’s ethnic minorities can be found in Yunnan which makes it a place that is accustomed to different religions and backgrounds. Aside from the art, culture, food and ethnic villages to visit, Yunnan also features some pretty stunning natural landscapes like Jade Dragon Snow Mountain National Park. Guests to Yunnan can also take a short trip to the Stone Forest, a well-known UNESCO Heritage Site as well as the surrounding islands. There are plenty of Mosques around the area so that visitors can pray. Try making your way to Yong-Ning Mosque, Hui-Dong-Yuan Mosque or Lijiang Old Town Mosque.
You can’t miss Beijing when visiting China as this destination is home to some of the country’s most intriguing historical sites. Aside from visiting The Great Wall and Forbidden City, you can travel around the streets without worrying about finding Halal food. There are hoards of suitable restaurants for everyone, including Muslims. While you are there, make sure to visit Beijing’s oldest Mosque, Niujie, which was built for the first time back in 996. In fact, the Niu Jie area of Beijing looks like something right out of Arabia as many signs are in Arabic and most of the restaurants are selling Halal offering. The streets are full of people wearing traditional Muslim clothing as well.
Otherwise known as the Mecca of China, this market town is located in China’s Gansu province. The town is full of stunning natural features and is home to so many Mosques that you won’t have any issues finding a place to pray. Some of the Mosques you may want to consider visiting are Da Gongbei, Bijiachang Gongbei, and Huasi Gongbei. While wandering around the town, make sure to visit the Antiques Market. However, if you wish to get out and see some of the natural attractions, some popular ones to visit include; Wanshou Guan pagoda and the Taoist temple for fantastic views of the Daxia River Valley. When it comes to finding a nice meal, the majority of the restaurants in this town serve Islamic food. A popular Muslim restaurant to check out is the Xiang Fu Yi Pin, which has more of an up-market offering for pretty reasonable prices.
Located on the former Silk Road, this northwestern region of China is a hub for local Muslims. The capital city, Urumqi, is one of the best destinations in the area to visit if you are a Muslim tourist. Visit the Xinjiang Uygur Regional Museum to learn all about the ethnic minorities living in the area and then head to Da Bazar, a traditional Islamic market that sells a ton of delicious food and snacks and is a great place to people watch. Xinjiang is famous for its food which includes mostly Muslim offerings. There will be no shortage of restaurants where you can dine, and there is also a large Mosque there for when it comes time to pray. Kashgar is also another popular city to visit as it also holds a bazaar as well as the Id Kah Mosque. Traveling around to the different cities and towns of this region is highly recommended for Muslim travelers as there are plenty of travel and eating options.