Huajue Alley is a narrow alley located between the Drum Tower and the Great Mosque in the center of the city. The 500-meter-long winding lane is a great place to pick souvenirs and antiques. Stalls sell a wide variety of items, ranging from local art crafts including well-embroidered cloth shoes, elegantly-carved China sculptures to fine handicrafts originated in the far southwest parts of China like some fine arts of Miao and Dong minorities line along the street.
Most of the residents in the Huajue Alley are Muslims--the Hui minority. Hui people seem to be born linguists. Most pedlars of the alley can speak several languages so do not be surprised when finding a shop owner speak fluent English.
Although it is one of the best places to purchase trinkets, Huajue Alley is more than a bustling business street. In the alley, visitors will find some historical sites including the Great Mosque, the largest and one of the most important Islamic mosques in China. The traditional Chinese styled temples, pavilions, buildings and Islamic arts. Religious atmosphere in the mosque well illustrates the street's rich culture.
Huajue Alley has a long history dating back to Tang Dynasty over one thousand years ago. The street was originally called Ziwu Alley, but little of the tiny lane was recorded during the subsequent dynasties. Although very little is known of its long past, one thing is certain that the narrow alley has experienced ups and downs for centuries.
A leisure stroll through the alley to see Muslims doing their business will prove to be pleasant and interesting. The varieties of colorful goods sold there will make a feast for your eyes.