Three days in Tianjin gives you plenty of time to see different sides of the city—spanning eclectic architecture, modern museums, and pleasant outdoor spaces—as well as take a day trip to the Great Wall. Here’s how to make the most of three days in Tianjin.
Day 1: Hike the Great Wall of China
Head to Huanyaguan, the closest section of the Great Wall from Tianjin. Steep and challenging, it’s good for those looking to hike a restored section of the wall away from crowds. Those looking for something less strenuous—and who don’t mind the crowds—should opt for Mutianyu. It's the best restored section and also one of the easiest, with a cable car and chair lift to take you up, and a chair lift and toboggan to take you down.
Those who chose Huanyaguan can spend the rest of the afternoon hiking the wall, or head to Dule Temple, one of China’s oldest surviving wooden structures, see the tombs of Emperor Qianlong and Dowager Empress Cixi at the Eastern Qing Tombs, or go for a soak at Dijing Hot Springs Resort. Those who went to Mutianyu can head to Beijing and explore top attractions such as Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City.
Day 2: Architecture, Museums, and Views
Tianjin is a city of architectural contrasts. One way to appreciate those differences is to head to a former foreign concessions area, such as Five Great Avenues (Wudadao) or Jiefanglu Financial Street, and then contrast that architecture with the more traditional Chinese look of the Shi Family Courtyard or Ancient Culture Street.
Spend the afternoon in one of the many museums in Tianjin. Options range from the unique Porcelain House, covered in porcelain vases and ceramic chips, to the historic Tianjin Old Town Museum. Or head to the vast Tianjin Museum and the ultramodern Tianjin Binhai Library.
Take a spin on the Tianjin Eye Ferris wheel for expansive city and sunset views. Another option is the Tianjin Television and Radio Tower. Spend the rest of the evening checking out the nightlife. Enjoy dinner and a nightcap at Marco Polo Square, or go barhopping and club-hopping.
Day 3: Local Flavors and Outdoor Pursuits
Head to Nanshi Food Street or Ancient Culture Street to sample a range of local dishes, such as fried dough twists and Guobuli steamed stuffed buns. A local guide can help you navigate the many options and vendors. Alternatively, spend the morning visiting cultural landmarks such as Tianhou Palace, Tianjin Confucian Temple, or Tianjin Drum Tower.
In the afternoon, head out to Shuishang Park or People’s Park; or, for something different, check out the Binhai Aircraft Carrier Theme Park. Wrap up your final day with an evening cruise along the Haihe River for one last memorable tour of Tianjin and to get a different perspective on more than eight bridges and 10 attractions.