Help Wikitravel grow by contributing to an article! Learn how.

Difference between revisions of "Changsha"

From Wikitravel
Hunan : Changsha
Jump to: navigation, search
(Fixed something I broke)
(See)
(41 intermediate revisions by 25 users not shown)
Line 1: Line 1:
 
'''Changsha''' (长沙; ''Chángshā'') is the capital of [[Hunan]] Province.
 
'''Changsha''' (长沙; ''Chángshā'') is the capital of [[Hunan]] Province.
  
Changsha's claim to fame is that during World War II, it was the first major city that was successful defended by the Chinese from the Japanese invasion. The XiangJiang river runs through Changsha.
+
In the first millenium BC, it was an urban centre in the state of Chu. In the centuries following, Changsha was often in a state of contention, sometimes incorporated into Han China proper, and at other times heading an independent state. Mao Zedong started his political career here, as a newly-arrived country boy from the nearby village of Shaoshancong.  During World War II, it was the first major city that was successfully defended by the Chinese from the Japanese invasion. The Xiangjiang river runs through Changsha.
  
 
==Get in==
 
==Get in==
  
 
===By air===
 
===By air===
Huanghua International Airport is the major airport for those seeking to visit Changsha. A 45 minutes drive on the expressway will take you to the city center. Airport buses operate from 06:00 to 22:00 from downtown Changsha to the airport and costs 16.5RMB. The bus leaves from the CAAC Aviation Hotel on Wuyi Dadao (五一大道) a block west of the central train station.
+
Huanghua International Airport is the major airport for those seeking to visit Changsha. A 45 minutes drive on the expressway will take you to the city center. Airport buses operate 6AM-10PM from downtown Changsha to the airport and cost ¥16.5. The bus leaves from the CAAC Aviation Hotel on Wuyi Dadao (五一大道) a block west of the central train station.
  
Traveling from the airport, will allow for some window-viewing of the relatively wealthy countryside surrounding the city. Although annual floods do sizable property damage, the overflowing of the rivers help irrigate the evergreen and enormous rice paddies.
+
Traveling from the airport will allow for some window viewing of the relatively wealthy countryside surrounding the city. Although annual floods do sizable property damage, the overflowing of the rivers help irrigate the evergreen and enormous rice paddies.
  
 
===By train===
 
===By train===
Changsha Railway Station is in the heart of the city. There are direct train connections from many cities in China or indirect ones using a connecting train. From Beijing it is about 14 hours.
+
Changsha Railway Station is in the heart of the city. There are direct train connections from many cities in China or indirect ones using a connecting train. From Beijing it is about 14 hours.
  
Changsha South Station (of the Wuhan-Guangzhou High Speed Rail) is located south-east of the downtown, about 25-30 minutes from the city core.  From Guangzhou South it is about 2.5 hours on the high speed train, or a minimum of 8 hours on the much cheaper normal trains (a little over one quarter of the price) .
+
Changsha South Station (of the Wuhan-Guangzhou High Speed Rail) is southeast of the downtown, about 25-30 minutes from the city core.  From Guangzhou South it is about 2.5 hours on the high speed train, or a minimum of 8 hours on the much cheaper normal trains (a little over one quarter of the price).
 
+
Also is 3 hours on high speed rail to shenzhen.
Trolleys with the usual Chinese array of instant noodles, dried vegetables and packed fruit are noteable for their regularity, but for something slightly more fulfilling (and expensive), hop down to the restaurant car.
+
  
 
==Get around==
 
==Get around==
Ubiquitous taxicabs flood the city streets, willing to transport you just up the street or to the other side of town, the meters start at ¥6.   
+
Ubiquitous taxis flood the city streets, willing to transport you just up the street or to the other side of town. The meters start at ¥7.   
  
If you want to spend like a native or just want to experience the sensation of being sandwiched between natives, then hop on a bus for ¥2 and feel the thrill of speeding down the bumpy roads with barely any breathing room. buses with a/c (hot or cold) run 2 ¥2 and buses without run 1 ¥2
+
If you want to spend like a native or just want to experience the sensation of being sandwiched between natives, then hop on a bus for ¥2 and feel the thrill of speeding down the bumpy roads with barely any breathing room. Buses with air-con (hot or cold) cost 2 ¥2 and buses without cost 1 ¥2
  
 
==See==
 
==See==
* <see name="Hunan Provincial Museum" alt="湖南省博物馆" address="" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="Museum hours are posted as 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM (except closed Mondays), but expect to get kicked out 20 minutes before closing" price="">See the Han-era tomb of Xin Zui, the Marquess of Dai, and her 2,100 year old preserved body. Its extraordinary and looks more real than Ho Chi Minh. Her body was still moist and flexible when they found her, complete elastic skin. Also at the museum, is many exhibits on all kinds of Han Dynasty artifacts, including pottery, to lacqureware, to an impressive collection of intact silk, etc.  Admission is free, but it is on a first come first serve basis - your ticket will have a time stamped on it that will show when you are allowed to enter the exam.  Show up early in the morning if you want to get in right away, otherwise you might have to pick up a ticket and then return in a few hours to enter.</see>
+
* <see name="Hunan Provincial Museum" alt="湖南省博物馆" address="" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="Closed for renovation until 2015-2016! Tu-Su 09:00-17:00, expect to get kicked out 20 minutes before closing, on a first come first serve basis, your ticket will have a time stamped on it that will show when you are allowed to enter the exam.  Show up early in the morning if you want to get in right away, otherwise you might have to pick up a ticket and then return in a few hours to enter" price="Admission is free">See the Han era tomb of Xin Zui, the Marquess of Dai, and her 2,100 year old preserved body. It's extraordinary and looks more real than Ho Chi Minh. Her body was still moist and flexible when they found her, complete elastic skin. Also at the museum are many exhibits on all kinds of Han Dynasty artifacts, including pottery, lacqureware and an impressive collection of intact silk.</see>
  
* <see name="Hunan University" alt="" address="" directions="Across the river" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">You will find lots of great places to eat in and around the studious atmosphere of the various campus' south of Yuelu Shan. Mao Zedong attended Hunan University and there is a statue in honour of this most famous of their alumni.</see>
+
* <see name="Hunan University" alt="" address="" directions="across the river" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">You will find lots of great places to eat in and around the studious atmosphere of the various campus' south of Yuelushan. </see>
 +
*<see name="changshahua.com" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="www.changshahua.com" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">This English language website is an up-to-date resource for those visiting to or living in Changsha. Meet other English speakers, find out what to do, where to go and what Changsha has to offer.</see>
  
 
==Do==
 
==Do==
 
* <do name="Theaters" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">Watch traditional folk art, eg lion dance, drum opera, clam dance and Xiang Opera.</do>
 
* <do name="Theaters" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">Watch traditional folk art, eg lion dance, drum opera, clam dance and Xiang Opera.</do>
*<do name="Yuelu Academy" alt="" address="Hunan University" directions="Changsha's west side, South Lushan road" phone="0731-88822352" url="http://dm.hnu.cn/" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Yuelu Academy is the "Thousand Year Old" center of culture and learning of southern China. Rich in history and beautiful period architecture, a visit to the academy will put you in touch with the ancient elites of southern China. You can find all the history on the website and then visit the academy yourself to get the real experience.</do>
+
 
 +
*<do name="Yuelu Academy" alt="" address="Hunan University" directions="Changsha's west side, South Rd" phone="0731-88822352" url="http://dm.hnu.cn/" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">The ''Thousand Year Old'' centre of culture and learning of southern China. Rich in history and beautiful period architecture, a visit to the academy will put you in touch with the ancient elites of southern China. You can find all the history on the website and then visit the academy yourself to get the real experience.</do>
 +
*<do name="Yuelu Mountain" alt="岳麓山" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">A local mountain, Yuelushan is a pleasant retreat from the urban grit of Changsha. Take the cable car up in the morning, and spend your day wending your way down. There are plenty of teahouses, pavilions, and the occasional temple to stop at on the way down. You can explore Yuelu Academy near the bottom of the mountain, Central South University at the base.</do>
 +
*<do name="Martyrs park" alt="" address="" directions="Take bus 150 from furong square, 3 stations." phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Has, a nice lake with boats. Also a memorial to those who died establishing the communist government.</do>
  
  
 
==Buy==
 
==Buy==
* <buy name="Wuyi Shopping Circle" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">The most important shopping area downtown.</buy>
+
* <buy name="Wuyi Shopping Circle" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">The most important shopping area downtown.</buy>
 +
*<buy name="Kaifu temple" alt="" address="Hua xia road" directions="Take 501 from zhong shan ting" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">The cities main buddhist temple</buy>
 +
 
  
 
==Eat==
 
==Eat==
 
When eating in Changsha there is nothing better than a plate of stinky tofu (chou dofu) or soo-yo-bing bought right off the street. If you have just arrived, be wary of eating from street vendors. Although the inviting aroma of food cooking may be too tempting to resist, you better have a strong stomach if you do not want to get an upset one.
 
When eating in Changsha there is nothing better than a plate of stinky tofu (chou dofu) or soo-yo-bing bought right off the street. If you have just arrived, be wary of eating from street vendors. Although the inviting aroma of food cooking may be too tempting to resist, you better have a strong stomach if you do not want to get an upset one.
  
Food in Changsha is famously described as "xiang cai". As Xiang Jiang is the major river that borders the city to the west, Xiang denotes not only the flavor and taste of the food but also of the land. Changsha, like Szechuan is known for spicy food, but without the additional "ma", numbing affect of certain spices and pepper. In summer, oversized metal mixing bowls filled with crawfish seasoned with plenty of chili and spices, take the stage atop countless tabletops. Restaurants get so busy and overcrowded that tables, chairs along with diners spill into the busy streets and the parade of tantalizing dishes endlessly leave the kitchen to appear on the tables of hungry diners.
+
Food in Changsha is famously described as ''xiang cai''. As Xiangjiang is the major river that borders the city to the west, Xiang denotes not only the flavor and taste of the food but also of the land. Changsha, like Szechuan is known for spicy food, but without the additional ''ma'', numbing affect of certain spices and pepper. In summer, oversized metal mixing bowls filled with crayfish seasoned with plenty of chili and spices, take the stage atop countless tabletops. Restaurants get so busy and overcrowded that tables, chairs along with diners spill into the busy streets.
  
 
For international cuisine, four and five star restaurants have reputable chefs although for a visitor, the inifite array of dishes native to or with a Hunan flair are sure to please even the most discriminating palate.
 
For international cuisine, four and five star restaurants have reputable chefs although for a visitor, the inifite array of dishes native to or with a Hunan flair are sure to please even the most discriminating palate.
  
Head straight to Snake Alley for the best "point-and-eat" in the city for merely pennies (US$ of course).
+
Head straight to Snake Alley for the best ''point-and-eat'' in the city for merely pennies.
  
* <eat name="Food Street" alt="" address="" directions="On the first floor of Huatian Hotel" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">Choices and a sampling of regional foods of the country. Long established and well-regarded, this cozy and rustic eatery stays bustling through the wee morning hours as food enthusiasts, businessmen, and families with their children flock to this fun food court styled eatery. Do not be fooled though by the fast-food style of ordering (prepared food is displayed at various stations, your orders are placed by a hole punched on your menu card and then served freshly prepared within minutes of ordering), the food here is superb. From the sweet taro dessert topped with gingko biloba nuts to steamed pork chops dusted with a layer of sticky rice powder, the food here arguably some of the best you will find. With the huge range and style that is presented at Food Street, you will be sure to find new favorites for you and each of the guests you bring.</eat>
+
[[Image:HuoGongDian.jpg|thumb|250px]]
*<eat name="Huo Gong Dian (Translates as: The Fire Palace; Written 火宫殿)" alt="" address="Pozi Jie #78" directions="Behind Wal-Mart, on Changsha's snack street Pozi Jie (Written (坡子街))" phone="0731—85817591 " url="http://www.huogongdian.com/" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Itchin' for some smokin' Hunan cuisine? Check out the history-rich Fire Palace. Good enough for Chairman Mao is good enough for all of us! Addition: They come around with trolleys and serve you. The trolleys contain different food types... soup, dim sum, and so forth. You might enjoy Chou Dou Fu ("stinky" tofu), Changsha Dou Pi, Pineapple bread (contains chunks and similar to some Indian breads), Yangrou Chuar (lamb kebabs), Niu Rou (Beef in baskets - relatively fat-free), Corn soup and vegetables which are cooked in front of you.</eat>
+
* <eat name="Food Street" alt="" address="" directions="on the first floor of Huatian Hotel" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">Choices and a sampling of regional foods of the country. Long established and well-regarded, this cozy and rustic restaurant stays bustling through the wee morning hours as food enthusiasts, businessmen, and families with their children flock to this fun food court. Do not be fooled though by the fast-food style of ordering (prepared food is displayed at various stations, your orders are placed by a hole punched on your menu card and then served freshly prepared within minutes of ordering), the food here is superb.</eat>
  
[[Image:HuoGongDian.jpg]]
+
*<eat name="Huo Gong Dian" alt="火宫殿; lit: The Fire Palace" address="78 Pozi St (坡子街)" directions="behind Wal-Mart, on the snack street" phone="+86 731 85817591" url="http://www.huogongdian.com/" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Local Hunan cuisine. Chairman Mao ate here. You might enjoy Choudoufu (''stinky tofu''), Changsha Doupi, Pineapple bread (contains chunks and similar to some Indian breads), Yangrou Chuar (lamb kebabs), Niurou (beef in baskets, relatively fat-free), corn soup and vegetables which are cooked in front of you.</eat>
  
 
==Drink==
 
==Drink==
'''Jiefang West Road''' (解放西路; ''Jiefangxilu'') - there are a few Chinese clubs along this road, including SoHo, the ubiqiutous Chinese chain. Drinks tend to be expensive, the music loud, and clubs crowded. It's just off the main walking street so it's in quite a handy location.
+
'''Jiefang West Road''' (解放西路; ''Jiefangxilu'') has a few Chinese clubs along this road, including SoHo, the ubiqiutous Chinese chain. Drinks tend to be expensive, the music loud, and clubs crowded. It's just off the main walking street so it is in quite a handy location.
  
'''Taiping Street''' (太平街; ''Taipingjie'') - this newly refurbished area, with traditional/tacky facades has a few smaller bars, some with live music. It's just off Jiefang West Road towards the river. Addition: This is a touristy shopping street and many prices are on par with the West. Bargaining is impossible here. Even those who speak little English know how to say "No Bargains". I would only shop here if really pushed for time AND have extra money, although the shops are worth seeing to get an idea of what is available. Bargain extra hard here if you can...
+
'''Taiping Street''' (太平街; ''Taipingjie'') is a newly refurbished area, with traditional/tacky facades has a few smaller bars, some with live music. It is just off Jiefang West Road towards the river. This is a touristy shopping street and many prices are on par with the West. Bargaining is impossible here. Even those who speak little English know how to say ''no bargains''. But the shops are worth seeing to get an idea of what is available.
  
 +
*<drink name="Crave Bistro" alt="" address="Xinmin Rd, Shimenlou St 3" directions="west side of town, after crossing the middle bridge to the west side, take a left onto Lushan Rd, take a left at the first light onto Xinmin Rd, halfway down the street on your right is the small street Shimenlou St, the cafe is the third storefront on the left" phone="+86 15388034382" url="http.//www.facebook.com/CraveChangsha" hours="Open 7 days a week, 10:00AM - late" price="Sandwiches &yen;22 - &yen;38. Beer &yen;14 - &yen;35 Cocktails: &yen;20 to &yen;30" lat="" long="">Opened by 2 foreigners in 2013, Crave is a deli by day, and bar by night. Popular items include a breakfast bagel, a barbeque pulled pork sandwich with coleslaw, and a buffalo blue chicken sandwich. They also have a full range of sliced deli meats and cheeses, including Italian prosciutto, Praga ham, spicy salami, pastrami, Swiss, Irish cheddar, mozzarella, and gouda. For drinks, there's a large selection of reasonably priced beer from Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and American microbreweries, as well as a full bar and cocktail menu.</drink>
  
*<drink name="The Fifth Tone" alt="Coffeeshop" address="Changsha's West Side, XinMin Road, Shimenlou Street #3. " directions="After crossing the middle bridge to the west side, take a left onto Lushan Road. Take a left at the first light onto Xinmin Road. Halfway down the street on your left is a small street called Shimenlou street. The cafe is the third storefront on the left!" phone="0731-88805303" url="www.douban.com/group/thefifthtone" hours="2pm-10pm, Mon thru Sat" price="15yuan" lat="" long="">It's American- run, has real coffee drinks and homemade desserts like brownies and banana bread. Although a hangout for local foreigners, it also has a Chinese clientele.
+
*<drink name="Hooligans Pub" alt="Huli Ba" address="1 Hualongchi" directions="from the center square of walking street take the 2nd left and go by Starbucks, keep walking a short distance and turn right at Daylight Donuts, go to the end of the alley and look for the statue out front" phone="13973116221" url="" hours="From 07:00" price="From &yen;20, Heineken on sale &yen;25" lat="" long="">Consisting of three floors with the 2nd offering free Karaoke and Xbox camera dancing and sports games - great fun with friends and strangers. It is a western style pub owned by a foreigner. It plays popular western music, large-screen TV's with satellite connection, a professional dart board, has imported drinks, homemade burritos, hot chocolate and coffee. It is a great place to meet English speakers and celebrates all Chinese and western holidays.</drink>
There's an 'English Corner' (where Chinese invite English speakers to join them to speak English) on Tuesday evenings, and live music on Friday nights.</drink>
+
  
*<drink name="Hooligans Pub" alt="Huli Ba" address="#1 Hua Long Chi" directions="From the center square of walking street take the 2nd left and go by Starbucks, keep walking a short distance and turn right at Daylight Donuts. Go to the end of the alley and look for the statue out front." phone="13973116221" url="" hours="open 7-? 7days/week" price="20 Yuan and up" lat="" long="">Consisting of 3 floors with the 2nd offering free Karaoke it's a western style pub owned by a foreigner. It plays popular western music, large-screen TV's with satellite connection, a professional dart board, has imported drinks, homemade burritos, hot chocolate and coffee. It's a great place to meet English speakers and celebrates all Chinese and western holidays. 25-kuai Heineken on sale.</drink>
+
*<drink name="Caco Cafe" alt="" address="Taiping St 138 (太平街)" directions="" phone="+86 731 89785030, 18684758455" url="http://www.cacocafe.com" hours="noon-midnight" price="25" lat="" long="">A good place to meet other visitors. Western & Chinese menu. Ladies night on Wednesday. Open bar on Thursdays. Full English breakfast, desserts, paninis and bacon rolls.</drink>
 
+
*<drink name="gan-bei.com" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="www.gan-bei.com" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">gan-bei.com is a same-day drink delivery service and shop in Changsha. They deliver a variety of cold, imported beer to Changsha based customers. Purchases can also be made in-store.</drink>
*<drink name="Caco Cafe" alt="Coffee Cocktail Dessert" address="Taiping Street (太平街) #138" directions="" phone="86-731-89785030,15116389218" url="http://www.cacocafe.com" hours="12:00-0:00" price="20RMB" lat="" long="">A good place to meet other travellers in Changsha. Western & Chinese menu. Beer and cocktails for 20 RMB and Caco is on hand to be the host. Ladies drink free margaritas on Wednesday. Open bar on Thursdays. Full English breakfast and bacon rolls for the tired and hungry.</drink>
+
  
 
==Sleep==
 
==Sleep==
*<sleep name="Jinjiang Inns" address="NanHu Lu, TianXin Qu" directions="Taxi straight from the airport cost me 100 RMB in November 2011; the rate seems to be fixed into town at RMB 100." hours="24 hours" price="Around 200 RMB per night when I stayed">I first stayed in JinJiang Inns on NanHuLu (南湖路) which was not great; after each bath the room steamed up for hours because the flooring was made of an unidentifiable material and then it was located a bit of a way out... The staff were nice enough but that wasn't enough, sadly. Check out my third listing which I personally felt was much better value for the same price.</sleep>
+
*<sleep name="Jinjiang Inns" alt="" address="Nanhu Rd, Tianxin District" directions="taxi straight from the airport costs ¥100, the rate seems to be fixed into town" phone="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="Around ¥200" lat="" long="" hours="24 hours">After each bath the room steams up for hours because the flooring was made of an unidentifiable material. It is a bit of a way out, but the staff are nice.</sleep>
  
*<sleep name="Renting an apartment" hours="24 hours">
+
*<sleep name="FeeTel Inns Changsha" address="Wuyi St, Furong District (芙蓉区, 五一大道)" directions="near the corner of Huangxing Zhong Rd (黄兴中路)" hours="24 hours" phone="+86 1807 310 3459"></sleep>
One should be careful if renting unless you have Chinese friends who you don't mind bothering at any and all hours. I  stayed in an apartment for 1 month which was a nuisance. Although they probably meant well, the landlords were irritating and loud and walked into my apartment quite a few times in the initial days. The cooker wasn't fixed for a month, the plumbing was not great and the flat ended up waterlogged. Of course, this may not happen in every apartment, but in such situations your Chinese better be really good. By this point I had enough and took help from a good friend to find a new place. The first places we saw were worse than this apartment but then we walked into this really cool, affordable theme hotel by FeeTel at the same price (even cheaper for some rooms) than JinJiang Inns above. It's below.</sleep>
+
*<sleep name="Yuelu Shan Youth Hostel" alt="岳麓山国际青年旅舍" address="Villa No. 1, Lushan Huaqiaocun, 50 Xinmin Rd (新民路50号麓山华侨村1号别墅)" directions="In a courtyard behind Yangcheng Restaurant (Yángchéng Cānguăn hòumiàn), in Yuèlù, West of the Xiang river. " phone="0731-85368418" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="Doubles for ¥128, Dorms around ¥50." lat="" long="">Comfortable, well kept and friendly staff. Conveniently located for climbing Yuelu Shan. </sleep>
 +
*<sleep name="7 days Inn" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="¥140" lat="" long=""></sleep>
 +
*<sleep name="Huatian Hotel Changsha" alt="华天大酒店总店" address="300 East Jiefang Road (Jiefang Dong Lu),Changsha" directions="" phone="" url="http://www.huatianhotelchangsha.com/" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="">The Huatian Hotel Changsha (Changsha Huatian Dajiudian) is a five-star hotel located about 2 kilometres from the railway station. The hotel provides various guestrooms, all equipped with air conditioning, mini bars and international direct-dial phones. </sleep>
 +
*<sleep name="Dolton Hotel Changsha" alt="长沙通程国际大酒店" address="159 North Shaoshan Road (Shaoshan Bei Lu) Furong Changsha" directions="" phone="" url="http://www.doltonhotel.com/" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="">Changsha's Dolton Hotel (Changsha Tongcheng Guoji Dajiudian) is a five-star hotel located in the heart of the city only 30 minutes by car from the airport and five minutes from the railway station. </sleep>
 +
*<sleep name="The New Hooligans Pub" alt="Huli Ba" address="55 Aimin Rd just off of Xinmin Rd, Hexi." directions="from downtown cross the #1(middle bridge) and turn left on Yuelu Rd, turn left at the next light onto Xinmin Rd and take another left by Mona Lisa Restaurant. Hooligans Pub is across and a bit to the right in front of 7 Days Inn." phone="13973116221" url="" checkin="5PM" checkout="2AM" price="10 Yuan and up" lat="N28 11' 45.93" long="E112 56' 58.35">Hooligans Pub has moved to a bigger more comfortable location and they now serve western food! It also has a huge rooftop garden!</sleep>
  
*<sleep name="FeeTel Inns Changsha" address="Wuyi Dadao (五一大道) near the corner of Huang Xing Zhong Lu (黄兴中路), Furong Qu, Changsha (芙蓉区,长沙)" hours="24 hours" phone="For GuoQu who speaks English +86 1807 310 3459">
 
 
The FeeTel Hotel (非特) gave me a wonderful end to my trip.<br><br></sleep>
 
  
 
==Get out==
 
==Get out==
Line 84: Line 89:
 
| minorr1=[[Zhuzhou]]
 
| minorr1=[[Zhuzhou]]
 
}}
 
}}
{{outline}}
+
{{usable}}
{{isIn|Hunan}}
+
{{IsPartOf|Hunan}}
  
 
[[it:Changsha]]
 
[[it:Changsha]]
 
[[pl:Changsha]]
 
[[pl:Changsha]]
 
[[zh:长沙]]
 
[[zh:长沙]]
 
HuangHua Airport has flights to several other domestic cities, as well as Hong Kong.
 
Changsha Train Station has trains to several places in China.
 

Revision as of 03:42, 30 December 2013

Changsha (长沙; Chángshā) is the capital of Hunan Province.

In the first millenium BC, it was an urban centre in the state of Chu. In the centuries following, Changsha was often in a state of contention, sometimes incorporated into Han China proper, and at other times heading an independent state. Mao Zedong started his political career here, as a newly-arrived country boy from the nearby village of Shaoshancong. During World War II, it was the first major city that was successfully defended by the Chinese from the Japanese invasion. The Xiangjiang river runs through Changsha.

Contents

Get in

By air

Huanghua International Airport is the major airport for those seeking to visit Changsha. A 45 minutes drive on the expressway will take you to the city center. Airport buses operate 6AM-10PM from downtown Changsha to the airport and cost ¥16.5. The bus leaves from the CAAC Aviation Hotel on Wuyi Dadao (五一大道) a block west of the central train station.

Traveling from the airport will allow for some window viewing of the relatively wealthy countryside surrounding the city. Although annual floods do sizable property damage, the overflowing of the rivers help irrigate the evergreen and enormous rice paddies.

By train

Changsha Railway Station is in the heart of the city. There are direct train connections from many cities in China or indirect ones using a connecting train. From Beijing it is about 14 hours.

Changsha South Station (of the Wuhan-Guangzhou High Speed Rail) is southeast of the downtown, about 25-30 minutes from the city core. From Guangzhou South it is about 2.5 hours on the high speed train, or a minimum of 8 hours on the much cheaper normal trains (a little over one quarter of the price). Also is 3 hours on high speed rail to shenzhen.

Get around

Ubiquitous taxis flood the city streets, willing to transport you just up the street or to the other side of town. The meters start at ¥7.

If you want to spend like a native or just want to experience the sensation of being sandwiched between natives, then hop on a bus for ¥2 and feel the thrill of speeding down the bumpy roads with barely any breathing room. Buses with air-con (hot or cold) cost 2 ¥2 and buses without cost 1 ¥2

See

  • Hunan Provincial Museum (湖南省博物馆). Closed for renovation until 2015-2016! Tu-Su 09:00-17:00, expect to get kicked out 20 minutes before closing, on a first come first serve basis, your ticket will have a time stamped on it that will show when you are allowed to enter the exam. Show up early in the morning if you want to get in right away, otherwise you might have to pick up a ticket and then return in a few hours to enter. See the Han era tomb of Xin Zui, the Marquess of Dai, and her 2,100 year old preserved body. It's extraordinary and looks more real than Ho Chi Minh. Her body was still moist and flexible when they found her, complete elastic skin. Also at the museum are many exhibits on all kinds of Han Dynasty artifacts, including pottery, lacqureware and an impressive collection of intact silk. Admission is free.
  • Hunan University, (across the river). You will find lots of great places to eat in and around the studious atmosphere of the various campus' south of Yuelushan.
  • changshahua.com, [1]. This English language website is an up-to-date resource for those visiting to or living in Changsha. Meet other English speakers, find out what to do, where to go and what Changsha has to offer.

Do

  • Theaters. Watch traditional folk art, eg lion dance, drum opera, clam dance and Xiang Opera.
  • Yuelu Academy, Hunan University (Changsha's west side, South Rd), 0731-88822352, [2]. The Thousand Year Old centre of culture and learning of southern China. Rich in history and beautiful period architecture, a visit to the academy will put you in touch with the ancient elites of southern China. You can find all the history on the website and then visit the academy yourself to get the real experience.
  • Yuelu Mountain (岳麓山). A local mountain, Yuelushan is a pleasant retreat from the urban grit of Changsha. Take the cable car up in the morning, and spend your day wending your way down. There are plenty of teahouses, pavilions, and the occasional temple to stop at on the way down. You can explore Yuelu Academy near the bottom of the mountain, Central South University at the base.
  • Martyrs park, (Take bus 150 from furong square, 3 stations.). Has, a nice lake with boats. Also a memorial to those who died establishing the communist government.


Buy

  • Wuyi Shopping Circle. The most important shopping area downtown.
  • Kaifu temple, Hua xia road (Take 501 from zhong shan ting). The cities main buddhist temple


Eat

When eating in Changsha there is nothing better than a plate of stinky tofu (chou dofu) or soo-yo-bing bought right off the street. If you have just arrived, be wary of eating from street vendors. Although the inviting aroma of food cooking may be too tempting to resist, you better have a strong stomach if you do not want to get an upset one.

Food in Changsha is famously described as xiang cai. As Xiangjiang is the major river that borders the city to the west, Xiang denotes not only the flavor and taste of the food but also of the land. Changsha, like Szechuan is known for spicy food, but without the additional ma, numbing affect of certain spices and pepper. In summer, oversized metal mixing bowls filled with crayfish seasoned with plenty of chili and spices, take the stage atop countless tabletops. Restaurants get so busy and overcrowded that tables, chairs along with diners spill into the busy streets.

For international cuisine, four and five star restaurants have reputable chefs although for a visitor, the inifite array of dishes native to or with a Hunan flair are sure to please even the most discriminating palate.

Head straight to Snake Alley for the best point-and-eat in the city for merely pennies.

HuoGongDian.jpg
  • Food Street, (on the first floor of Huatian Hotel). Choices and a sampling of regional foods of the country. Long established and well-regarded, this cozy and rustic restaurant stays bustling through the wee morning hours as food enthusiasts, businessmen, and families with their children flock to this fun food court. Do not be fooled though by the fast-food style of ordering (prepared food is displayed at various stations, your orders are placed by a hole punched on your menu card and then served freshly prepared within minutes of ordering), the food here is superb.
  • Huo Gong Dian (火宫殿; lit: The Fire Palace), 78 Pozi St (坡子街) (behind Wal-Mart, on the snack street), +86 731 85817591, [3]. Local Hunan cuisine. Chairman Mao ate here. You might enjoy Choudoufu (stinky tofu), Changsha Doupi, Pineapple bread (contains chunks and similar to some Indian breads), Yangrou Chuar (lamb kebabs), Niurou (beef in baskets, relatively fat-free), corn soup and vegetables which are cooked in front of you.

Drink

Jiefang West Road (解放西路; Jiefangxilu) has a few Chinese clubs along this road, including SoHo, the ubiqiutous Chinese chain. Drinks tend to be expensive, the music loud, and clubs crowded. It's just off the main walking street so it is in quite a handy location.

Taiping Street (太平街; Taipingjie) is a newly refurbished area, with traditional/tacky facades has a few smaller bars, some with live music. It is just off Jiefang West Road towards the river. This is a touristy shopping street and many prices are on par with the West. Bargaining is impossible here. Even those who speak little English know how to say no bargains. But the shops are worth seeing to get an idea of what is available.

  • Crave Bistro, Xinmin Rd, Shimenlou St 3 (west side of town, after crossing the middle bridge to the west side, take a left onto Lushan Rd, take a left at the first light onto Xinmin Rd, halfway down the street on your right is the small street Shimenlou St, the cafe is the third storefront on the left), +86 15388034382, [4]. Open 7 days a week, 10:00AM - late. Opened by 2 foreigners in 2013, Crave is a deli by day, and bar by night. Popular items include a breakfast bagel, a barbeque pulled pork sandwich with coleslaw, and a buffalo blue chicken sandwich. They also have a full range of sliced deli meats and cheeses, including Italian prosciutto, Praga ham, spicy salami, pastrami, Swiss, Irish cheddar, mozzarella, and gouda. For drinks, there's a large selection of reasonably priced beer from Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and American microbreweries, as well as a full bar and cocktail menu. Sandwiches ¥22 - ¥38. Beer ¥14 - ¥35 Cocktails: ¥20 to ¥30.
  • Hooligans Pub (Huli Ba), 1 Hualongchi (from the center square of walking street take the 2nd left and go by Starbucks, keep walking a short distance and turn right at Daylight Donuts, go to the end of the alley and look for the statue out front), 13973116221. From 07:00. Consisting of three floors with the 2nd offering free Karaoke and Xbox camera dancing and sports games - great fun with friends and strangers. It is a western style pub owned by a foreigner. It plays popular western music, large-screen TV's with satellite connection, a professional dart board, has imported drinks, homemade burritos, hot chocolate and coffee. It is a great place to meet English speakers and celebrates all Chinese and western holidays. From ¥20, Heineken on sale ¥25.
  • Caco Cafe, Taiping St 138 (太平街), +86 731 89785030, 18684758455, [5]. noon-midnight. A good place to meet other visitors. Western & Chinese menu. Ladies night on Wednesday. Open bar on Thursdays. Full English breakfast, desserts, paninis and bacon rolls. 25.
  • gan-bei.com, [6]. gan-bei.com is a same-day drink delivery service and shop in Changsha. They deliver a variety of cold, imported beer to Changsha based customers. Purchases can also be made in-store.

Sleep

  • Jinjiang Inns, Nanhu Rd, Tianxin District (taxi straight from the airport costs ¥100, the rate seems to be fixed into town). After each bath the room steams up for hours because the flooring was made of an unidentifiable material. It is a bit of a way out, but the staff are nice. Around ¥200.
  • FeeTel Inns Changsha, Wuyi St, Furong District (芙蓉区, 五一大道) (near the corner of Huangxing Zhong Rd (黄兴中路)), +86 1807 310 3459.
  • Yuelu Shan Youth Hostel (岳麓山国际青年旅舍), Villa No. 1, Lushan Huaqiaocun, 50 Xinmin Rd (新民路50号麓山华侨村1号别墅) (In a courtyard behind Yangcheng Restaurant (Yángchéng Cānguăn hòumiàn), in Yuèlù, West of the Xiang river.), 0731-85368418. Comfortable, well kept and friendly staff. Conveniently located for climbing Yuelu Shan. Doubles for ¥128, Dorms around ¥50..
  • 7 days Inn. ¥140.
  • Huatian Hotel Changsha (华天大酒店总店), 300 East Jiefang Road (Jiefang Dong Lu),Changsha, [7]. The Huatian Hotel Changsha (Changsha Huatian Dajiudian) is a five-star hotel located about 2 kilometres from the railway station. The hotel provides various guestrooms, all equipped with air conditioning, mini bars and international direct-dial phones.
  • Dolton Hotel Changsha (长沙通程国际大酒店), 159 North Shaoshan Road (Shaoshan Bei Lu) Furong Changsha, [8]. Changsha's Dolton Hotel (Changsha Tongcheng Guoji Dajiudian) is a five-star hotel located in the heart of the city only 30 minutes by car from the airport and five minutes from the railway station.
  • The New Hooligans Pub (Huli Ba), 55 Aimin Rd just off of Xinmin Rd, Hexi. (from downtown cross the #1(middle bridge) and turn left on Yuelu Rd, turn left at the next light onto Xinmin Rd and take another left by Mona Lisa Restaurant. Hooligans Pub is across and a bit to the right in front of 7 Days Inn.), 13973116221. checkin: 5PM; checkout: 2AM. Hooligans Pub has moved to a bigger more comfortable location and they now serve western food! It also has a huge rooftop garden! 10 Yuan and up. (N28 11' 45.93,E112 56' 58.35)


Get out

Routes through Changsha
ZhengzhouWuhan  N noframe S  ZhuzhouGuangzhou


This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!



Variants

Actions

Destination Docents

In other languages