Ancient China: Cities, Locations and Monuments of Glory

Many Chinese cities and locations share momentous glory of ancient China. These political, architectural, and urban centers housing many marvels stand testimony to China’s great past that shaped it quest for nationhood.

Scattered throughout the valleys dotting the Yellow River and the Yangtze River, the home to 5,000-year-old Chinese Civilization, these centers are soaked in the history, culture, and philosophy of China for good.

Xian - Ancient China

Xi’an: The Ancient City
One among the four ancient capitals, Xi’an (see photo above) boasts 3,100 years of glorious history that saw dynasties after dynasties taking over and rulers shaping the imperial China.

Home to the Terracotta Army Museum built in the memory of Qin Shihuang, the city has numerous historical symbols.

The former imperial city that was once a flourishing commercial center dotted with pagodas, temples, palaces, and towers.

Chengdu: The Southern Commercial Gateway
The culmination of the southern Silk Route, Chengdu rose to prominence during the Three Kingdoms period. The trading center was an important hub of Taoism, a major philosophical school in ancient China. Excavations led to discovery of many historical ruins and cultural symbols belonging to the first century AD.

Suzhou: The Swan Song City
Recognized as an important silk trading center, Suzhou has been a witness to Chinese national ascendancy since 400 BC. The Ming and Qing rulers developed the city an important cultural and silk trading centre. Its classical gardens, canals, paintings, craft, and buildings present a piquant mix of history and culture.

Nanjing: The Ancient Capital
Six dynasties ruled over China from Nanjing. The city grew as a center of history, politics, culture, and learning during the imperial China period. Nanjing is home to tombs of Zhu Yuanzhang and Sun Yat-Sen and the Confucius Temple. The city is the second most visited in China after the Great Wall. Its buildings, temples, monuments, and landscape speak volumes about the glorious history of ancient China.

Great wall of China

Yangzhou: The Affluent City
Founded in 486 BC, Yangzhou was a major port city in China. The city, a major commercial center, was associated with wealthy merchants, great poets, scholars of caliber, and painters of repute. Temples, old residences, and museums in the city are canvassed in an aura of ancient charm.

Luoyang: The City of Emperors
No other ancient city lies as close to Chinese imperial past as Luoyang. More than 90 emperors of 13 dynasties made Luoyang their imperial capital. Its museums, temples, and palaces stand witness to more than 5,000 years imperial history of ancient China.

Read more about the ancient cities of China

The Great Wall: Symbol of China
A man made wonder built over 1700 years, the Great Wall of China (see pic) is the symbol of civilization and its indomitable spirit. Constructed during various dynastic periods to check invading nomadic forces, the Wall is the most important attraction in contemporary China. It also shaped the cultural identity of China. The Great Wall differentiated Chinese cultural milieu from others until the later medieval age giving rise to Han nationalistic character.

Apart from these places of historical importance, China has numerous places, such as the strategic city Hangzhou, ancient cities of Dali, Jinan, Ping Yao, Fenghuang, Songpan, Zhenghou, former capital cities Anyang and Kaifeng, Cemetery of Confucius in Qufu, Datong's Yungang Grottoes, and Tianjin, which display significant link to ancient Chinese culture.

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