Jul 5, 2015

Tianjin's Italian Town


 Tianjin Italian Town is an area consisting of a few blocks of completely restored 19th century Italian buildings.  The local government decided that these old buildings, which at the time were in use as tenements, were an untapped tourist attraction gold mine .  The government bought out the tenets and restored the buildings and streets etc. to their former glory.  The buildings now houses restaurants, bars and so on and are very popular among local and foreign visitors.... 



I found it interesting enough to visit as well during my short trip to the lovely little city of Tianjin. Although the Italian Town is named after the street, it is in fact a small town with well preserved fences and other olden day European buildings that gives the town its Italian aroma.


Strolling down the street, you could almost imagine yourself in the nineteenth century Europe, especially in the Italian Town. However , this seems to be a hotspot for wannabe couples and brides to be as during the half an hour I was there, I spotted no less then 6 soon to be wedded couples there to take their bridal pictures...


Both sides of the street are decorated with lamp lights, plants and trees. Tianjin's  Italian Style District certainly dress up the little city of Tianjin as a cosmopolitan and elegant destination. 




It is also said that there are  quite a number of Chinese dramas that use this area as a backdrop because of its specialty and history.  I wonder if I have seen this before..... heheh


The Freedom Path is the only pedestrian street in the Italian Style Street and most of the buildings are European style restaurants and bars which attract many tourists. Here one can not only taste pizza, Italian pasta and other Italian aperitifs, but is said to be able to enjoy some Italian performances and other Italian clothes and handicraft exhibitions at certain time of the year. 

This is definitely a place you can come here to dine at Italian, French or German restaurants and daydream about being in Europe. This street is said to be quite charming at night, with its European-style architecture and warm white lights.



Situated in the center of Italian Style Street is the Marco Polo Plaza, but right in the center of the road, is a 'roundabout' with the goddess of peace sculpture, to commemorate the victory of World War I, and designed by the famous Italian sculptor Giuseppe Bony. The flying bronze goddess of peace statue is holding an olive branch, symbolizing the eternal peace and friendship.


A statue of Marco Polo.....


There is a open topped double-decker bus parked next to the Marco Polo Plaza, this is a special sightseeing bus. If you are interested and have the time, the bus is said to bring you for a tour around almost the whole Tianjin, passing the Italian Town, the Drum Tower, Watching Sea Pavilion, and so on. It takes about 1 hour to tour the whole trip. I did not take it and am not so sure how much it is......


The map of Tianjin Haihe Italian Style Town......


And a very erotic statue that catches almost every one's attention .... I got caught in the rain while there but that did not dampen my spirits as I really did enjoy myself strolling through the streets of Italy... errmm... I mean the Italian style street....

How to get there?
Tourists can take Bus No. 27, 868 and 901 and get off at the East Station

As for me and my daughter, we had walked from the Ancient Cultural Street to the Italian Style Street... It was a 15 minutes walk and pleasant as the weather was not too hot and there was a nice breeze at that time... However we did head back to Tianjin railway station via the Metro which was about 10 minutes walk away .....It is the Jianguo Road Metro on Line 2, just one stop away from the Tianjin Railway Station...


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