The main form of entertainment in Chengdu
is Chinese traditional opera. The city is home to Sichuan's leading
opera troupe, famous throughout the country and this is a great place
to see some authentic Chinese art on stage.
The main difference between Sichuan Opera
and Beijing Opera lies in the fact that the themes of the former are
more provincial and related to everyday life than their Beijing
counterparts. All the opera here is performed in Sichuanese, a special
rhythmic dialect and the costumes and face paints are colorful and
Currently the best place to see Sichuan
style opera is in the Chengdu Theater on Minzhong Lu and
the Jin Jiang Theater on Huaxingzheng Lu.
Along with the influx of investment and
the inevitable cranes and skyscrapers that are modernizing Chengdu, a
fairly lively bar and cafe scene has emerged, helped by the fact that
this is a stop off point for many travelers en route to Tibet.
There are a few good bars around the
Traffic Hotel serving good beer (the local brew is Blue Sword which
goes down very well with spicy food!) and also doing western style
food. Paul's Place is currently pick of the bunch.
These are good places to meet other
travelers and swap stories, to exchange some books or to use the
internet. After dark, many of the bars in Chengdu get quite lively,
staying open until the small hours of the morning. If you are after
something a bit more hardcore, try the Huigui Reunion Bar on Yihuan
Lu. This place is filled with cool city kids shaking their heads
to the techno music blaring out.
There are thousands of Tea
houses dotted about the city which are nice places to soak up some
local atmosphere. If it's something more active you seek, try the
stadium on Renmin Zhong Lu where the Chengdu teams often have