Originally carved out in the 1970s for military use, the Binhai Road trail will have all standing at attention. With full-bleed views of the shimmering Yellow Sea and the distant mountains, this 19-mile coastal boardwalk is the longest in China. It would be ambitious to explore the entire length in a day—instead, dip in for an abbreviated amble of the road’s highlights and linger at the observation platforms strewn along the way. Start at Binhai Road West, just up from Xinghai Park, the largest public square in Asia. Here, the road runs above the 25-mile golden stretch of Fujiazhuang Bathing Beach. Skip a stop at the depressing Forest Zoo, and saunter down to the beach to sunbathe. Or continue along the trail to Bird’s Nest Ridge (燕窝岭), named for the black swallows that once made their nests in the dramatic cliffs. Need to power up with a snack? Try menzi—jelly-like cubes of protein-rich sweet potato, pan-fried to a crisp and doused in a savory dressing of smashed garlic and sesame paste—sold by street vendors along the path.
Take a taxi 20-minutes to Binhai Road, either starting from Xinhai Park or Bird’s Nest Ridge. If at Tiger Beach Bay, make your way from Binhai Middle Road and head east.
BINHAI ROAD: The road starts from Haizhiyun Square in the east and ends at Heishijiao in the west.