Chinatown

After writing about an area located in Zone 4, which anyone has hardly ever heard of, yesterday, I’m going touristy again today!

Chinatown is one of the coolest places in London and I simply can’t leave it out of my photowalks. I take the tube to Leicester Square, which is extremely crowded, as always.

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And then I turn onto Lisle Street, which is nicely decorated with flags – one of the distinguishing features of Chinatown.

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The first great thing about Chinatown are elements of traditional Chinese architecture here and there, like for example this pagoda at the end of Gerrard Street.

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The other elements are those beautiful gates. There are currently four of them.

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In fact, the fourth one was only installed earlier this year, and it is the largest and the most beautiful of all four.

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There are lots of different establishments in Chinatown – hair salons, medicine centres, shops, etc., but eating places definitely constitute the vast majority. The smells of different kinds of food follow you all around, some of them mouth-wateringly appetising, and some almost disgusting…

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You’ll see a lot of windows with hanging roasted ducks, pork bellies and even some weird-looking stuff which I failed to identify.

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Almost every restaurant, café or small eatery serves dim sum, a lot of them even doing it in the evening, which is not what Chinese restaurants would usually do, as dim sum is a meal for the first half of the day.

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Most restaurants display their elaborate menus with pictures outside. I have to say, this stuff looks really impressive and appetising, they definitely know how to attract clients!

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Here is one of those ‘all-you-can-eat’ buffets, which I never go to. It must be a great option for someone who is capable of and willing to eat a lot, but that is not my case.

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And then, there are the supermarkets. I think, there are two or three of them here, and they all have a rather specific smell.

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I suspect, that one element of that smell is that of durian – here it is, among other exotic fruit and vegetables, stinking happily 🙂

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This is the inside of one of those supermarkets, which looks quite ordinary. Even though I’m really intrigued by the “exciting goods downstairs”, I don’t go there.

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Instead I pop into See Woo, the supermarket I usually go to (for staring mainly, I can’t recall ever buying something other than a dragon fruit there). I actually don’t have the slightest idea of what most of the products on display are.

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These at least I’m able to identify – dried mushrooms!

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They also have a downstairs section, which is dedicated to homeware, kitchenware, crockery etc.

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And finally, there are a couple of shops selling clothes, souvenirs and decoration items, I think this one is definitely worth checking!

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