Top 10 Things to Do in Jinan

Jinan, capital of Shandong Province, better known as the City of Spring Water, has been recommending itself for rich spring water, including Baotu Spring, Black Tiger Spring and Five Dragon Pool. Tourists may also sample this city’s ancient charm at the Daming Lake, Thousand Buddha Mountain, Qushuiting Street, or feel its modern vibe at the Spring City Square. Details of top ten things to do in Jinan are given below.

In Jinan, Daming Lake Park is a must-see place for every tourist. It enjoys wide popularity on account of beautiful waterscape, classical garden and historical sites. Delicate pavilions, temples, islands, bridges and pagodas scatter around the lake, and tourists could enjoy them either by foot or by boat. What is more, this park unfolds different views in different seasons. Spring magnolia, summer lotus, autumn moon and winter snow make visiting Daming Lake Park a very enjoyable Jinan activity. 

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This scenic area is most special for Buddha statues. At the Wanfo Cave, tourists could see almost 30,000 statues of Buddha and his disciples and guardians. The grottos at the Qianfo Cliff and the long-standing Xingguo Temple are also worth seeing. Besides, every Mar. 3rd and Sep. 9th of Chinese lunar calendar, Thousand Buddha Mountain holds temple fair for one week, and people could enjoy folk performance such as gong and drum show, Chinese Kung Fu, and Shandong clapper ballad. Rich vegetation makes Thousand Buddha Mountain a natural oxygen bar to go for an outing, too. Tourists may climb up to the top and enjoy the panorama of downtown. 
On the list of “What to do in Jinan”, the Baotu Spring can never be missed. It was said that when Emperor Kangxi (1654-1722) traveled to Jinan, he found the tea brewed with Baotu spring water tasted very fresh, hence he named Baotu the No. 1 Spring on Earth. Since then, Baotu Spring has been popular Jinan things to do among tourists. Its three flows of spurting water are very attractive. Over thirty smaller springs near Baotu are also worth seeing. Since spring water is most impressive in rain season, tourists may come here in July or August. Moreover, at this time, people can have fun in the pond barefoot, or taste drinkable spring water for free. By the way, this park has lantern show around the Chinese New Year, culture festival in late Sep., and chrysanthemum show in Oct. to Nov. 

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Spring City Square

Spring City Square is the most prosperous place in downtown Jinan. The gigantic blue iron statue at the center is the landmark of this city, which is inspired by the Chinese character, spring (泉). Another highlight of this square is the musical fountain show in the evening. The water curtain against colorful lights is very suitable to take photos. Then, tourists may roam along the moat on the north, or go shopping at the underground Inzone Shopping Mall, which has many popular brands of food and clothes. Obviously, if you are looking for a one-stop place for fun, coming to this square is a right thing to do in Jinan, China.
Black Tiger Spring is the second largest spring in Jinan in terms of water outflow. People name it so because the dark rock in its cave and the strong water sound reminds people a lurking, roaring tiger. When tourists come here, they could see spring flows through the blind pass, gushes out of three stone carvings, and then makes big splash into the pond. More interestingly, local people often bring a bottle to get the spring water, for it tastes very sweet. Why not join them and have a taste? After that, you may wander around to see quaint rockeries, pavilions and other historical sites.

Five Dragon Pool

Five Dragon Pool is also a famous spring in Jinan. April is the best time to travel there, for the pool looks more appealing against flowers and willows. At the Hall of Celebrities (Mingshige), tourists could not only have the best view of waterscape, but feed goldfish. The scene of red and white goldfish scrambling for food is very interesting. However, if one comes here in winter, the recommended attraction would be the Ancient Hot Spring. No matter how cold it is, this area is always with warm water steam. By the way, ancient buildings and the exhibition of calligraphies and seal carvings are also worth seeing.

Furong Ancient Street

When gourmets schedule things to do in Jinan, they are suggested to set aside half a day at the Furong Ancient Street, which is the most popular food street not only in Jinan, but the whole Shandong area. Here, tourists could try representative Jinan food at vendors along the street. Recommended snacks include the Guozu Stinky Tofu, Oil Spin, Wonton Noodles, and Chicken Soup Dumpling. Also, many time-honored restaurants enable people to have a feast of authentic Shandong Cuisine, and two most worth trying dishes are the Braised Intestines in Brown Sauce, and the Sweet and Sour Carp.

Qushuiting Street

After you finish eating on the Furong Ancient Street, you may go north to the Qushuiting Street and take a walk. Qushuiting retains the old look of Jinan to the full, with spring flowing along one side and willows and residences flanking the other. During the visit, you may notice that local people use spring water to cook food or wash clothes, and these are very common things to do in Jinan. What is more, many handicraft stores wait for you to explore. Wickerwork, dough figurine, and pyrography work etc. are very cute souvenirs.

Hongjialou Cathedral

Hongjialou Cathedral, a double tower Gothic building, is the largest Catholic cathedral in eastern China. Tourists will be impressed with its solemnity at the first sight. Nevertheless, its interior is much more appealing. One may feast his eyes on the colorful murals on the dome, and the delicate carvings on the door and pillar. When sunlight filters through the stained glass, everyone could gain a sense of inner peace. Besides, there are many beautiful statues of Jesus, Holy Father, Holy Mother and angle.

Shandong Museum

What to do in Jinan, China for sightseeing and learning at the same time? You may consider Shandong Museum. Here, the worth seeing things cover the prehistoric relics, stone sculpture of the Han Dynasty (202 BC – 220 AD), daily articles of nobilities of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), and the Buddhist statues. Since Shandong was the birthplace of Confucius, this museum tells his life and ideology in a systematic way, meeting the demands of those interested in Confucianism. Children could also have fun at the exhibition of African wildlife’s migration. It is worth mentioning that overseas could rent audio English guide on the first floor.

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- Last updated on Dec. 07, 2020 -
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