We all started off super early this morning because we had to meet in the hotel lobby at 6 AM to check out and leave Beijing. It was sad leaving the city because I really enjoyed everything about Beijing, but I’m still really looking forward to Xi’an and Shanghai!
The hotel in Xi’an is beautiful and has much better WiFi than the hotel in Beijing. The entrance is very grand and they have robes in the hotel rooms which is how you know it’s a nice hotel. After settling in and resting for a bit, we made our way downstairs to go to the Muslim Quarter as a group. I honestly had no idea what to expect out of the Muslim Quarter, so I was going in blind.
Seeing the Muslim Quarter was a little overwhelming to me at first because it is so insanely packed. There are stands along either side of the road and lots of people walking down the road, as well as bikes and scooters and every now and then a car comes honking down. In China, the people driving are less concerned about the people around them than in the US it seems so you really have to get out of their way if they’re coming down the street. When we first were walking through the Muslim Quarter we weren’t stopping to look at anything really we were just walking through it to get to the restaurant for dinner so we were moving pretty quickly. I definitely want to come back to it tomorrow and take a closer look at things and do some bartering with the vendors. While we were walking through our tour guide who always says “hello hello” pointed out a few things to us, like the food stand that were stretching something like taffy and another food stand that was serving goat feet.
The restaurant we were eating at was not serving goat feet, but it was serving dumplings which is definitely one of my favorite foods so needless to say I was excited. When we got to the restaurant we learned that its been in Xi’an and making dumplings for over 1,000 years!
The first thing they brought out was “baby dumplings” that were in a soup and were super tiny but really good. After that we tried a lot of other kinds of dumplings, like seafood and pork and chicken, that were each in unique shapes.
After a satisfying dinner we made our way to the Drum Tower. The architecture of the tower was really beautiful and so was the art within the tower. We spent some time looking at the different drums around the perimeter of the tower and then made our way inside. Inside the tower were many beautiful vases and paintings. The only part of the Drum Tower that I didn’t enjoy was when we went to the balcony that wrapped around the entire building because there were a ton of birds that swooped very close to where we were standing, but the view of the city was still very nice!
When we got back to the hotel we spent some time relaxing and then headed to the third floor which has a pool and ping pong. Some people tried to swim but we got kicked out because you need to wear a shower cap if you want to use the pool which is kind of weird. After playing ping pong for a couple minutes after that we went back to out rooms and went to bed excited for the Children’s Village visit tomorrow!