Tianjin Culture

Tianjin Culture introduces Tianjin Culture Tour information about People, Language, Costumes, Cuisine, Festivals, Song and Dance, Traditional Crafts, Architecture, Museums, Religion, Historical Sites, Traditional Villages, Intangible Cultural Heritages and Inheritors of Intangible Cultural Heritages.

History of Tianjin

As one of the five National Central Cities of the People's Republic of China, Tianjin enjoys a favoured status. It is China's sixth-largest city and one of the country's hubs of advanced innovation, industry and financial reform. Divided into a historic old city district and the more modern Binhai New Area, Tianjin and its history offer an interesting mix of ancient China and the economic tiger the world knows today.

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Religion Culture in Tianjin

The religious culture of Tianjin has always been the most mysterious part of the tourists and scholars at home and abroad. It is not mysterious but unfathomable. It is definitely a vast project to thoroughly understand the mutual relationship and origin. This spectacular cultural scene of multi-religious culture has also made Tianjin a veritable multi-religious cultural place of happiness.

Religious culture seems like complex idea to study from the perspective of concepts. After all, scholars and philosophers have long debated the meaning of these terms and the impact they have had on our comprehension of the social world around us. For visitors, the temples, mosques, churches are the best places to experience the religious culture.


Islam has been practiced in Chinese society for 1,400 years. Muslims are a minority group in China, representing between 0.45% to 2.8% of the total population according to the latest estimates. In Tianjin, the main Muslims are concentrated in Meliuqiao Hui Ethnic Town.

There are many mosques in Tianjin. So, do not worry where to pray if you believe in Islam. What's more, visiting the mosques in Tianjin is another highlight of Tianjin.

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Buddhism is practiced in many countries and cultures throughout the world. Mahayana Buddhism has played a significant role in China and it has a long and rich history. As Buddhism grew in the country, it adapted to and influenced the Chinese culture and a number of schools developed. The influence of Buddhism in China reached its peak during the Tang Dynasty (618 to 907 AD). Buddhist arts flourished and monasteries grew rich and powerful. Factional strife came to a head in 845, however, when the emperor began a suppression of Buddhism that destroyed more than 4,000 monasteries and 40,000 temples and shrines.

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Tianjin is the main port city for North China and has been an important commercial and military city for nearly six hundred years. As one of the four largest cities in China, Tianjin has by far the smallest Christian population and fewest number of registered churches and meeting points. The spiritual darkness was fueled by battles in the 19th century with western “Christian” powers during the Second Opium War and Boxer Uprising.

Tianjin is the definition of a modern capitalistic metropolis, yet its religious prevalence cannot be ignored. Some of China’s most beautiful churches and sanctuaries are right here in Tianjin, so come discover what they are!

Tianjin Architecture Culture

The numerous historic constructions in Tianjin have lasted for more than 1,000 years, including dwelling houses, public constructions and warehouse. 

After the Second Opium War in 1860, Tianjin was forced to lend its port to foreign countries and gradually to cede its tracts of land to nine imperialist countries as concessions, and the construction in the city developed itself from the traditional Chinese style to a combination of the Chinese and Western styles, marking a great change of times and the ideas with a distinctive symbol. Therefore, taking the year 1860 as the watershed, we can classify the historic constructions as the ancient ones (before 1860) and the modern ones (1860-1950).

Ancient Architecture

Tianjin is a famous historical and cultural city. As of 2016, there are 15 national key cultural relics protection units, including Dule TempleDagukou Fort, Wanghailou Church. The Huangyaguan Great Wall, which is listed as a world cultural heritage, has more than 20 beacon towers of various shapes, hovering in the mountains and mountains, surrounded by beautiful scenery. There are 113 municipal-level key cultural relics protection units and more than 100 key cultural relics protection units at the district and county level. The famous ones include Tianhou Palace, Yuhuangge Pavilion, Confucius Temple, Catholic Church, Tianjin Great Mosque, Guangdong Guild Hall, etc.

Modern Architecture

As one of the most developed cities in China, Tianjin, it is one of the fastest growing cities in the world in terms of skyscraper construction. Tianjin is honored as a ‘Building Museum’ as it was occupied by nine foreign imperial powers before, leaving behind many buildings with extraordinary and exotic architectural styles, a real feast for the eye! There are British Middle Ages style buildings, German Gothic buildings, French romantic buildings, etc. These foreign buildings are often referred to as "xiaoyanglou buildings."

In the new era, Tianjin has built many different styles of buildings, such as Tianjin Radio and Television Tower, the tallest in China when it was built, Jinwan Square with European style, Tianjin Concert Hall, and the Tianjin Museum with glass and steel structure like Swan, the  Tianjin Eye on the Yongle Bridge of Haihe River, the large modern Tianjin Railway Station, Tianjin West Railway Station.

Landmark Buildings in Tianjin

As one of the most developed cities in China, Tianjin, it is one of the fastest growing cities in the world in terms of skyscraper construction. Tianjin is honored as a 'Building Museum' as it was occupied by nine foreign imperial powers before, leaving behind many buildings with extraordinary and exotic architectural styles, a real feast for the eye!

Tianjin Cuisine Culture

Tianjin cuisine is derived from the native cooking styles of Tianjin , a metropolis along the coast of northern China. It is heavily influenced by Beijing cuisine, due to its proximity, but differs by being sweeter, and more heavy focused on seafood. Tianjin Food Street is a place where cross-cultural Chinese dishes can be sampled. Popular dishes include Eight Great Bowls, Four Great Stews, Goubuli Baozi, and Guifaxiang Mahua, among others. Eight Great Bowls (八大碗) is a combination of eight mainly meat dishes. It can be further classified into several varieties. The Four Great Stews (四大扒) refers actually to a very large number of stews, including chicken, duck, seafood, beef, and mutton.

Must-eat Snacks in Tianjin

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Tianjin Quyi(Chinese Folk Art Forms)

There are a couple of folk customs which are well-known in the whole country. Tianjin is a respected home base of Beijing opera, one of the most prestigious forms of Chinese opera. Some stories about these famous folk customs are even written in the textbooks for students to know.


Crosstalk is a language-based drama rap art. In 1862, crosstalk debuted at Beijing Tianqiao market. Many years later, crosstalk continued to spread and flourished in Tianjin. Since then, it has been a thriving art and passed down from generation to generation. The crosstalk of Tianjin is a cultural symbol with unique geographical characteristics. If you pay a visit to Tianjin but don't listen to a teahouse crosstalk, it's just like you have never been to Tianjin. Some people have taken planes to Tianjin, with only one goal, that is, to listen to authentic Tianjin crosstalk. Tianjin crosstalk develops with its unique style. It is characterized by intense enthusiasm, with mixed emotions like anger and humor, and it is known for its ironic characteristics.A long table, a piece of wood, a long gown and a folding fan are all the things the performer need for their performance on the stage. 

In the circle of Tianjin crosstalk, there are many prominent figures such as Zhang Shouchen, Zhou Deshan, Ma Sanli, Hou Baolin and Chang Baokun, as well as crosstalk families such as the Ma, Chang and Yang. 


Drama is the most prominent representative of the collision between Chinese and Western cultures in Tianjin. As early as 1901, the educator Zhang Bojun began to advocate drama. His brother Zhang Pengchun was the first to learn modern drama art in foreign countries, and introduced the western realistic drama to the early Chinese drama activists and directors. In 1906, Li Shutong and his classmate Zeng Xiaogu founded the amateur drama group "Chun Liu She" in Tianjin and premiered "La Traviata". The drama "Thunderstorm" by Tianjin's playwright Cao Yu was based on Tianjin during the Republic of China.

Folk Customs

Clay Figurine Zhang (泥人张‍)

Clay figurine painting reached its artistic peak in the hands of artist Zhang Mingshan. In Tainjin, Clay Figurine Zhang refers to Zhang, the collection of his works, and the style he founded. Zhang drew inspiration from all aspects of life and produced highly vivid, colored clay figurines that made him famous during the Qing Dynasty. Several generations of artists later, Zhang figurines are still widely beloved in Tianjin.

Yangliuqing New Year Paintings(杨柳青年画‍)

Yangliuqing New Year paintings, named after their place of origin in the suburbs of Tianjin, are made using a method of wooden print making. Alongside Taohuawu New Year paintings in Suzhou, they are the most famous type of New Year paintings. Using sharp lines and bright colors they convey the happy atmosphere of a Chinese New Year.

Kite Wei(风筝魏)

Kites made in Tianjin are known across China as Wei Kites because of famous Tianjin kite artist Wei Yuantai. Wei developed a keen interest in making kites when he was young. He studied various birds and insects — their flying patterns, movements, and anatomies — and applied it to his craft. Wei Kites are also foldable. Wei’s grandson inherited the craft and continues making kites today.

Brick Carving Liu(刻砖刘)

During the Daoguang period of the Qing Dynasty (1821–1850), Tianjin brick carving developed into an art in its own right, separate from architecture. Mountains, rivers,  animals and people are just some of the common motifs.

Paper Carving(剪纸)

Paper carving differs from Chinese paper cutting by utilizing carving knives instead of scissors. Every year as the Spring Festival approaches, handmade paper carvings become all the rage at the market. People hang them on walls or windows as decorations.


In the 1930s, several world-class classical musicians including violinist Jascha Heifetz, Fritz Kreisler and pianist Rachmaninov came to Tianjin to perform. Li Shutong is a pioneer in the spread of Western music to China. His lyrics, "Song Farewell", has been widely sung in the early years of the Republic of China as a school of music taught in a new school. It has become a classic in the history of Chinese music.


Tianjin literature is a collection of “Tianjin Literature” and “Weipai Literature”.  At a certain historical stage, it has intermittently presented the characteristics of Tianjin regional culture, such as the appearance of “Jinwei Novel". From the historical perspective, the regionality and inheritance of "Tianjin Literature" are not so obvious. The Tianjin literary world in the early days of the founding of the Republic was led by writers, poets and dramatists from the Liberated Areas. They themselves became the main body of the Tianjin literary world. For example, Sun Li’s "The Beginning of Changeable(风云初记)" and "The Little Collection of Jinmen(津门小集)" were born in this period. Tianjin writer Feng Yucai is a representative figure of Tianjin literature. He has written many novels and essays, and many articles such as "Mountain Picker(挑山工)" and "Pearl Bird(珍珠鸟)" have been selected into textbooks.

Painting and Calligraphy

p>Tianjin has a long history of painting and calligraphy. During the reign of Emperor Kangxi, the Tianjin painting was an important territory for orthodox painting. In the early days of the Tianjin calligraphy circle, there were four people, Hua Shikui, Meng Guanghui, Yan Xiu, and Zhao Yuanli. The eight artists of Tianjin calligraphy and painting include Wang Xuezhong, Sun Qifeng, Sun Kegang, Wang Songyu, Xiao Lang, Aisin Gioro Puzuo, Zhao Songtao, and Mu Zhongqin, while Li Shutong, is equally skilled in painting and calligraphy. Contemporary painters include He Jiaying, Huo Chunyang, and Wu Yuyang.


As of 2015, the National Animation Park of Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City has attracted more than 220 companies, including more than 80 cultural and animation companies. The National Animation Park is a national cultural industry flagship project integrating animation research & development, training, production, display and trading, derivative product research & development and international cooperation and exchange. It was officially opened in May 2011.

Historical Sites in Tianjin

he visitors who plan to go to Tianjin will be surprised at the historical & cultural sites and former residence in Tianjin. The former residence is the first choice for those people who are interested in China's history. What's more, these places are the best choices to take a education tour, which can help students learn more knowledge related to history. 

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Museums in Tianjin

As a city with profound historical background, the number of museums in Tianjin is beyond your imagination. A museum can let us know what happened in past. Every place has its own history, and museums are the records that record the historical changes. The gorgeous Tianjin makes people very easy to forget the glory of Tianjin. If you are interested in the history of Tianjin, the museums will be a good choice for you. 

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Intangible Cultural Heritages and Inheritors in Tianjin

With a large number of ethnic minorities, Tianjin has many intangible cultural heritages with ethnic characteristics. Every intangible cultural heritage has its inheritors, who play a vital role in the promotion and inheritance of culture.