Chinatown

Image by tookapic from Pixabay

With Asians beings one of the fastest growing ethnic groups in Houston, it’s no secret that Houston’s Chinatown is bursting at the seams with fun, affordable things to do. Originally located in East Downtown (EaDo), Chinatown has since shifted southwest and is now populated with Vietnamese, Indian, Pakistani, Chinese, Korean, and many more populations. To keep up with demand, businesses sprouted up all over Bellaire Blvd., leaving Houstonians with a diverse, exciting area to explore. Here are some of the best things to do in Chinatown Houston:

 

Things to do in Chinatown, Houston – Food

Best Houston Chinatown restaurants

If you’re a fan of Chinese food or Pan-Asian cuisine, Houston is a wonderful place to be. Whether you’re in the mood for dim sum, fried rice, hot pot, noodles, or delicious stir-fried veggies, you don’t have to look far.

Chinese restaurants are especially great for outings with friends and family because food is often served family-style — the dishes are meant to be passed around and shared. We’ve put together a list of the best Houston Chinatown restaurants for you to choose from. 

Let’s look at some great food places in Chinatown, Houston

Dumplings, Ramen and more! 

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Image courtesy of Cafe101 Facebook Page

While Houston’s Chinatown is known for its plethora of restaurants, don’t assume that it’s all Chinese cuisine. In Houston’s Chinatown, you can enjoy Chinese xiao long bao (soup dumplings) at Fu Fu Café. Maybe you’re in the mood for some tonkatsu ramen at Tiger Den or some fusion food at Cafe 101.

Dessert Options – Thai style rolled ice cream and more

Then when you’re ready for dessert, try some Taiwanese ribbon ice at Nu Café or Thai-style rolled ice cream at Class 502. And the best part? All of these restaurants are within the same plaza, and most are very affordable. You don’t even need to move your car! Just remember to bring some cash as there may be a few places that don’t accept cards.

Class 502

Image courtesy of Class 502 Facebook page

Houston Chinatown Crawfish

Crawfish and Noodles

Image courtesy of Crawfish and Noodles Facebook Page

One thing that you have to try is Houston Chinatown crawfish. While many Houstonians have definitely had their fair share of the popular crustacean, Vietnamese crawfish adds a bold Asian twist, served with eggrolls or banh mi. You can get a taste at Crawfish Cafe, Crawfish & Noodles (featured on the popular Netflix series Ugly Delicious), or Cajun Kitchen.

Check out our list of 10 Best Chinatown Restaurants

 

Things to do in Chinatown, Houston – Shopping

If you’re looking for a great bargain, look no further than Harwin Drive, Chinatown Houston’s shopping district. You can find almost everything here, from cellphones to formal wear. Vendors change often so you’re in for a surprise during every visit. Even if you just window shop, it can be great free entertainment!

Hong Kong City Mall

Image courtesy of Hong Kong City Mall Facebook page

Hong Kong City Mall is another great Chinatown spot; an indoor mall containing dozens of restaurants, cafes, and small shops, all mostly Vietnamese. However, the most notable place to check out is Hong Kong Food Market. Here you can find all sorts of uncommon and international groceries and trinkets.

For Korean and Chinese specialties, you can check out Super H Mart. For an awesome selection of meats and seafood, Viet Hoa International Foods is the way to go.

 

Fun Things to do in Chinatown, Houston – Karaoke

Yes Ktv Karaoke

Image courtesy of Yes Ktv facebook page

If there’s one thing that Chinatown loves, it’s karaoke. And the plethora of karaoke options is evident of that. Once you’re done stuffing yourself with food, it’s time to chill with a group of friends with some drinks and good vibes. Many of the bars, like Yes KTV, are upscale and have private rooms that you can rent. You’ll be served with a selection over 10,000 songs in multiple languages that is updated frequently, so you’ll be in for hours of fun.

 

Where to get a Massage in Chinatown, Houston 

Lucky Feet Massage

Image courtesy of Lucky Feet Facebook page

Reflexology massages are to die for. And while driving up and down Bellaire Blvd., you’ll see the streets lined with businesses offering them. Many offer incredible services but will only cost you $20 for a full-hour foot massage (but these often include leg and even shoulder massages) or a full-body massage ranging from $40 – $60. Some places to check out are Oasis Massage & Salon and  Lucky Feet. Of course, always check reviews and make sure you’re going to a legitimate massage parlor.

 

Things to do in Chinatown, Houston – Heritage Tour

Chinese Community Center Houston

Image courtesy of Chinese Community Center Houston Facebook Page

If you are uncertain where to start in Chinatown, try taking an Asian Heritage Tour with the Chinese Community Center. They offer tours that explore tea-tasting and herbology, Chinese calligraphy, dim sum, Tai Chi, and shopping. All tours are led by those who have extensive and personal knowledge on each subject. Tours are available by appointment only but can accommodate groups of different sizes.

Teo Chew Temple Houston

Original image courtesy of Teo Chew Temple Houston

You can also check out Teo Chew Temple, which is absolutely beautiful to tour and is open to the public. The temple runs on donations so feel free to give a little cash if you’re able to do so.

What is your favorite spot to hit up in Chinatown Houston? Let us know in the comments below!

 

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