My Photographs: Top 5 Hefang Market Street – Hangzhou, China.

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Hefang Market Street, October 2017. Wonderboy and I were making our way back down Wushan Hill after a peaceful morning exploring City of God Pavilion when we stumbled upon the chaos of Hangzhou’s most frenetic market street. It’s also the city’s most ancient trading street, with an eight hundred year history.  

Hefang Market Street, October 2017. There’s a vast amount of eye candy on offer in Hefang, from dumpling houses, sweet stalls and glass blowing, to caricature artists, street games, an abundance of souvenir kitsch and one of the most famous pharmacies in the country specializing in traditional Chinese medicine.  And getting one of these mango monstrosities, complete with ice cream, yogurt and succulent chunks of dripping mango, feels like a Hefang rite of passage.

Hefang Market Street, October 2017. There are countless eateries on Hefang, including plenty of options for my very favorite type of Chinese street food: any-crap-you-can-stick-on-a-stick. With horrific queues, non-existent manners and barely an inch of personal space to be had, this is not the ideal place for dinner! Indeed we made do with grabbing just a few bites before settling down at a comparatively relaxed restaurant on the parallel Gayoin Street.

Hefang Market Street, October 2017. Those looking to be adventurous can try fried bugs, octopus and these huge deep fried crab creations. They seemed to be very popular, with just about one in three people sporting their own stick of crabby goodness.

Hefang Market Street, October 2017. I do like myself a bit of Chinese jerky! With a mountain of different flavors on offer, not to mention free samples, I found myself sauntering over to this market stall. But unfortunately the two witches that ran the place totally soured the experience with their obnoxious behavior! Having nibbled some delightful sweet pork jerky, I was pretty much attacked by Yellow Shirt Witch, who immediately bagged up a colossal pile of the stuff and attempted to force it into my hands. “40!!!” she demanded. When I politely declined, Witch 2 told me if I wasn’t going to buy anything I could pretty much **** off!

For more on my adventures in Hangzhou, have a read of my Top 5s on Leifeng Pagoda, Orioles Singing in the Willows Park, Shuangtou Bridge, Su Causeway, Wushan Hill and The Shangri-La Hotel.

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