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Four greatest ancient capitals of China

by fangrace

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China boasts its ancient capitals. Each ancient and historical city has its own story and spirit. The style and the characteristics of each city are recreated by time and make contribution to China tourism . The scenic wonders, the history and the modern glamorous of the cities are all valuable fortunes for us to feel, to learn and to see.


As the imperial capital of China, Beijing attracts tourists from home and abroad every year. The ups and downs of the history have witnessed the prosperity and decline of the capital. Thousands of years' history has shaped Beijing its own cultural environment: magnificent with leisure, solemn but elegant.

Hutong, the traditional alleyways, is a unique delicacy in a world of peace and tranquility far away from the ever-bustling metropolis. Thousands of Hutongs lie around the Forbidden City, most of which are from Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties.

Stroll along the Hutongs, you will find typical old Beijing architecture—Siheyuan. Siheyuan, also called quadrangles, is a building complex formed by four houses around a quadrangular courtyard. Some of these traditional courtyards which once covered all Beijing have survived through the time, now occupy one third of the downtown area with half of the local population in Beijing. It provides a peek into the local life of Beijingers.

Take a cycle rickshaw ride into the lives of the local people, tasted the Hutongs and Siheyuan, you will enjoy the leisure in the narrow streets and the accent of the Beijingers.


As one of the six ancient capitals in China, Xian enjoys a history of more than 3100 years. Thirteen dynasties, including Qin, Han and Tang Dynasty, have settled in Xian as the imperial capital for 1100 years.

Different dynasties endowed Xian with different heritages. Emperor Qinshihuang, the first emperor of the Qin Dynasty, owned the 8th Wonder of the World—Terracotta Warriors; During the Han and Tang dynasties, Xian has served as the center of politics, economy, culture and international communications, being the starting point of Silk Road tour and a oriental guesthouse. "Rome in the West, Chang'an (Xian) in the East" vividly depicts the historic position of this city. Till now, Xian shoulders Athens, Cairo, Rome, reputing as the Four Ancient Capitals in the World.


As an important birthplace of Chinese culture, Luoyang situates at the north side of Luoshui River, hence its name. Since it was settled as the capital in the Zhou Dynasty in 770 B.C., Luoyang had served as the capital for thirteen dynasties for more than 1500 years.

Time-honored history has endowed Luoyang with glamorous cultural heritages. Longmen Grottoes, one of the three most famous ancient sculptural sites in China which inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, depicts Buddhist subjects. White Horse Temple, the first Buddhist temple in China, is considered as "the cradle of Chinese Buddhism". Luoyang Ancient Tomb Museum, a special museum dedicated to ancient tombs, hosts the world's largest ancient tomb cluster. Luoyang should be considered for your popular China travel package.


Nanjing is reputed as the capital for emperors and beauties. Served seven times as the capital of regional empires, twice as the seat of revolutionary government, once as the site of a puppet regime in Sino-Japanese War, and twice as the capital of a united China, Nanjing possesses unparalleled geographic position and incomparable natural landscapes.

The most noted tourist attractions in Nanjing include Qinhuai River, Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum, Nanjing Yangtze River (Yangtze River cruises) Bridge, Confucian Temple, Yuejiang Tower and Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum and so on. From which, Zhonghua Gate is the grandest city gate with the most sophisticated structure; Nanjing City Wall, the masterpiece of China's ancient architecture, and still remains the longest city wall around the world.

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