Also known as Huimin Street and Muslim Quarter, Xi’an Muslim Street is the collective name for a number of streets, including Beiyuanmen Street, North Guangji Street, Xiyangshi Street and Dapiyuan Street, and it has become a famous attraction of Xi’an for its profound Muslim cultural atmosphere.
Xi’an was the starting point of the ancient Silk Road 1,000 years ago in the Western Han Dynasty (206 BC-9 AD). A number of merchants and overseas students from the Arabic countries and Persia went to Xi’an for business and studying since the Western Han Dynasty (206 BC-9 AD); they settled down on the present Muslim Street, and they were called the Hui people by the locals. One generation after another, the descendants of the Hui ethnic people multiplied and lived on the street, and the number has now reached over 60,000.
Muslim Street is paved with blue flagstones and shaded by trees, along which the archaized stores of the Ming (1368-1644) and the Qing (1644-1911) dynasties are in line, and they’re all operated by the Hui ethnic people. A number of ancient architectural buildings are well-retained on the street, highlighted by Hanguang Gate of the Tang Dynasty (618-907), Xicheng Gate Tower Cluster of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the City God Temple (a Taoist temple) and the Grand Mosque, all of which contrast finely with one another.
Though Muslim Street is regarded as a tourist scenic spot by foreigners, it’s actually considered as a snack street by the locals, which is also an ideal place for the locals to kill time during a hot summer. As a matter of fact, Muslim Street is lined with various restaurants and stalls, some of which specialize in selling cakes, some in dried fruit and some in snacks. Most famous dishes of Xi’an are available on Muslim Street, including Marinated Meat in a Baked Bun, Pita Bread Soaked in Lamb Soup, Bean Threads in Shaanxi Flavoring and Xi’an Dumplings.
Famous Restaurants near Muslim Street
Location: Nanyuanmen Street, Xi’an
Location: Zhonggulou Square, Xi’an
Location: 215, North Guangji Street, Xi’an
Location: 121, West Xiyangshi Street, Xi’an