Going to Tianjin? Do This!

I zipped down to Tianjin this afternoon on the bullet train to take part in walking tour of the old city, conducted by Doug Red, of Asia Walking Tours.

We started out near the Kiessling, an historic German bakery, then spent the next two hours wandering around the old British and French Concessions. Doug’s knowledge of of the city’s history is vast and his love for it is deep, both of which were on display all afternoon.

He’s a great story-teller as well, so we all came away with a better understanding of the lives of some of Tianjin’s more famous residents: Herbert Hoover, Charles Gordon, Zhang Xue-liang, and Eric Lidell, to name just a few.

If you’re looking for something interesting to do in Tianjin sometime, I highly recommend contacting Doug at Asia Walking Tours.

Here are a few photos from the afternoon:

Herbert Hoover used to work in this building.

The Astor Hotel — the place to see and be seen back in the day.

No British colonial city would be complete without a Victoria Park, now called The Municipal Committee Park (yawn)

China’s first Post Office

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5 thoughts on “Going to Tianjin? Do This!

  1. So you didn’t see the apartment where Eric Lidell lived when he taught in Tianjin?

    You can’t go in, but it does have a plaque on the gate.

    • Plaque no longer makes any mention of the famous foreigner who once lived there. the house itself is unremarkable. Of more interest is the nearby sports stadium (Min Yuan), being demolished as of end 2012, for what will hopefully be a more accessible park. This was originally a sports track designed by Eric Liddell based on Stamford track in London where he ran various races. It became central to numerous expat sporting and civic events.

  2. Oh, nostalgia time! I taught English there in 1996-97; I didn’t see half of those places. Told the students that a “tour” service would be a good occupation and needed; seems that someone is operating one now.