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5 Places to Grab Food or Drinks In and Around Kunming’s Jinma Biji

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Visitors to Kunming will probably find themselves in Jinma Biji square at some point. Just south of the Bird and Flower Market, and near to many of Kunming’s flourishing malls, it is a distinct and useful landmark.

Jinma Biji can be easily pinpointed by its two memorial arches, Jinma and Biji (golden horse and emerald chicken), which sit at the centre of Jinbi Lu and Sanshi Jie. To the east of these arches is Jinmafang and to the west lies Bijifang. The arches are about 12 meters high and 18 meters wide and there is square between the two of about 30 meters in length. The original arches were built during the Ming dynasty but have since been destroyed and restored several times. Their latest reincarnation, in 1998, was built in the style of the original.

These arches are particularly beautiful at night when they are lit up by the lights below. If you head there around dusk you’ll be able to enjoy watching old ladies dance to funky techno, young couples enjoying each other’s company and shaokao (barbeque) sellers drumming up business.

There is a lot to see and do in this area but, once you have done it all, sometimes you just want a nice calm place to sit and eat. Here are five good eating options for you in and around Jinmafang. 


The Beautiful Jinma Memorial Arch at Night. Source: kenner116

1) Hump bar and hostelView In Map
The Hump (驼峰客栈酒吧) is an international youth hostel and bar, and a much used hang out for new arrivals to the city. Located on the edge of the square the rooftop bar gives you great views over the city centre. With a crowd of travelers and locals the atmosphere is lively but relaxed. The bar serves an array of beers and drinks and the restaurant will dish you up some good ol’ fashion Western food. Hump bar is also located right next to a pretty good Burmese cafe and if you want to go clubbing but want to stumble back to the hostel easily, just round the corner is Pandora, which is your standard Chinese club; and a favorite of the Kunming gay scene.   

Add: Jinmafang, Wuhua District, Kunming (near Qianhe Gutouwang)
地址: 昆明市五华区金马坊(近仟和骨头王)
Tel: 0871 6364 0359
Website: http://www.thehumphostel.com/
Getting there: Take buses 3, 4, 62, 73, 90, 98, 107, 109, 213 or fast buses a1, k12 to Jinmafang bus station (金马坊站)

2) Huihuxi CafeView In Map
Huihuxi (会呼吸咖啡屋) translates to ‘Breathing’ cafe, and with the hustle and bustle of central Kunming it is an excellent place to escape to so that you can breath. The decor is in a ‘European’ style so expect wooden everything and some nice sofas. They have a range of teas and coffees; their mint latte is worth a try, as well as a number of Western dishes (though the price of these is a bit steep). And in addition to food and drinks, they hold intimate concerts on weekend nights. Just go to the second floor. 

Add: Building 3, 7 Shuncheng Wangfujing, Wuhua District, Kunming
地址: 昆明市五华区沿河路7号顺城王府井3楼(近半糖)
Opening hours: 10:00 – 02:00
Getting there: Take buses 3, 4, 62, 73, 90, 98, 107, 109, 213 or fast buses a1, k12 to Jinmafang bus station (金马坊站)

3) Yuhua Western restaurantView In Map
Yuhua Western Restaurant (雨花西餐厅) is a little upmarket. It’s the type of place to check out if you are tired of local food and feeling a bit fancy. It is part of a chain of western style restaurants that started in Shenzhen. They serve up dishes such as Angus steak in black pepper sauce, paella, baked froi gras, or tropical fruit pizza (so there are a wide array of options). For dessert, why not check out the cheesecake, which you will surely fall in love with.

Add: Building 4, Qingcheng Mingdian, Nanqiang Jie, Wuhua District, Kunming (near Xiangyun Jie)
地址: 昆明市五华区南强街倾城名店4楼(近祥云街)
Tel: 0871 6362 4031  
Opening hours: 10:00 – 00:00
Getting there: Take buses 3, 4, 62, 73, 90, 98, 107, 109, 213 or fast buses a1, k12 to Jinmafang bus station (金马坊站)

4) Airuochun (Jinbi park restaurant)View In Map
There are three Airuochun (蔼若春) restaurants across Kunming, with the branch in Jinbi park being the most popular. The restaurant is situated in an old courtyard that has been lovingly restored; the walls are made of antique carved wood paneling. They serve a range of Yunnan style dishes including pineapple rice, crab tofu and sanxianrou.

In addition if you have a China Merchants Bank card, you can get a 9% discount.  

Add: Jinbi Gongyuan, Jinbi Lu, Wuhua District, Kunming
地址: 昆明市五华区金碧路中段金碧公园旁
Tel: 0871 6363 2118
Opening hours: 09:00 – 22:00
Getting there: Take buses 3, 4, 62, 73, 90, 98, 107, 109, 213 or fast buses a1, k12 to Jinmafang bus station (金马坊站)

5) Qiaoxiangyuan (Wenhua Jie branch)View In Map
Qiaoxiangyuan (桥香园) is famous for its guoqiaomixian, which translates to crossing the bridge noodles and is a must try if you go to Yunnan. Way-back-when a scholar’s wife came up with a genius way to transport his lunch to him while he was working. Instead of putting all the ingredients in the soup, which would then cool down too fast and the food inside would overcook, she bought him all the ingredients and the broth separately and got him to add it all. Be warned, though, that this dish contains a lot of oil; the thick layer on top seals in the heat. Qiaoxiangyuan is a pretty popular restaurant so expect to wait if you go at peak times.  

Add: 2 Shulin Jie, Wuhua District, Kunming (near Jinbi Guangchang)
地址:昆明市五华区书林街2号(近金碧广场)
Tel: 0871 6364 5275
Opening hours: 07:00 – 00:00
Getting there: Take buses 3, 4, 62, 73, 90, 98, 107, 109, 213 or fast buses a1, k12 to Jinmafang bus station (金马坊站)

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Keywords: Kunming jinma Biji Jinmafang Bijifang

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