After a couple of bullet trains and a looong Metro ride I arrived at the second city of my Chinese weekend – Shekou, which is a district of Shenzhen. In 1978/9 Deng Xiaoping chose Shenzhen to be a Special Economic Zone. For ShenZhen it was like winning the lottery.
A nondescript fishing village of 25,000 has grown into a mind blowing array of skyscrapers, manufacturing and shopping. Most people that visit Shenzhen do so by crossing the border and travel about 500m to the Luohu Commercial City to shop for fake luxury goods. A trip to Shekou and a night out is worth the effort. You can get there by Metro or about a 120RMB cab. Shekou’s fun because it combines glorious kitsch, over the top modern buildings and a very varied bar scene. There’s everything from high end rooftop bars to the grungiest dive bars and all manner of things in between. To my great mirth and delight I discovered a microbrewery in a cruise ship that has somehow been moved onto land.
It’s a great set up with 3 styles brewed in gleaming copper kettles. They make a dark, a golden and a very serviceable wheat beer. This went down very well with one of the best bar snacks I’ve had – chilli fried baby whitebait. Kitschy – yes. Fun – absolutely. I left plenty on the table at Shekou, including not eating in Willie’s Crab Shack in a street full of seafood restaurants. The next morning I walked through the wet markets – the seafood is fresh. Might be worth another day trip from Hong Kong – this time by ferry!