My 5: Sweet Mao – Gulangyu Island, China.

Sweet Mao Gulangyu Island Xiamen Fujian province China

1. August 2017. It was mid afternoon on Gulangyu when, all of a sudden, the heavens opened and the rain came beating down. So I sprinted off through the nearest stone gate and into a colonial courtyard with brick arches, twisting trees and a statue of a red-haired, cartoon cat. Sweet Mao announced a number of playful signs; the home of sweet tea, handmade nougat and thoughtful gifts.

Sweet Mao Gulangyu Island Xiamen Fujian province China

2. August 2017. “Do you want some tea?” asked the man in blue dungarees and a white, red-striped T-shirt. He looked like a cross between a clown and the presenter of a kids’ TV Show. “It’s free!” he clarified with a friendly smile. So I sampled a cup of red date tea and could not deny it was delicious.

Sweet Mao Gulangyu Island Xiamen Fujian province China

3. August 2017. Inside I found a small but charming space that was part store, part teahouse. There were pots of jam, packs of crumbly cookies and Gulangyu-themed souvenirs. The dude behind the counter was also rocking the dungarees shtick. It was impossible not to smile.

Sweet Mao Gulangyu Island Xiamen Fujian province China

4. August 2017. This girl was posted in a connecting room behind a counter home to a wide selection of aromatic teas. She seemed please to see me and without even asking poured me a cup of complimentary ginger and honey. This one was even better!

Sweet Mao Gulangyu Island Xiamen Fujian province China

5. August 2017. The rain was still coming down hard, so I hung around for a bit watching the Sweet Mao crew do their thing. They were such a cheerful happy-go-lucky bunch, particularly this guy, who treated me to multiple handfuls of wrapped nougat chunks. “You don’t need buy anything, it’s ok!” he laughed as I stuffed my face. If ever you’re in Gulangyu, go and see them. The tea is great, the nougat even better and those ridiculous outfits are good for a giggle.

For more info on my discoveries here, take a peek at my other 5s from Gulangyu Island.

You can also have a look at my articles on the nearby city of Xiamen

Like this? Then why not check out my zillion 5s from all around China.

And I’ve written a short story series called Challenged In China.

I’ve been living, working and traveling all over the world since 2001, so why not check out my huge library of My 5s from over 30 countries.

Leighton Literature travel reports short stories travel blogger

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Freelance travel writer, voice over and English teacher from London. Former music and film journalist, interviewer of the stars. Passionate about travel, film, music, football, Indian food.

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