China Travel Guide

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Best things to do in Nanjing, China

Located in eastern China, Nanjing is the capital of Jiangsu Province and the core city of the Yangtze River Delta region. Founded about 2,500 years ago, Nanjing is one of the four ancient capitals of China. The four ancient capitals of China, including Nanjing, Beijing, Xi'an and Luoyang. Nanjing is one of the important birthplaces of Chinese civilization, with a rich cultural heritage and a wealth of scenic spots.

Nanjing was the capital of thirteen dynasties. During the 13 dynasties that Nanjing was the capital, they were Eastern Wu (222-280), Eastern Jin (317-420), Song (420-479), Qi (479-502), Liang (502-557), Chen (557-589), Yang Wu (902-937), Southern Tang (937-975), Southern Song (1127-1279), Ming (1368-1644), Southern Ming (1644-1662), Taiping Heavenly Kingdom (1851-1864), and the old Republic of China (1912-1949).

Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum Nanjing
Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum | Things to do in Nanjing, China, Asia

Xinjiekou, No. 1 Central Business District in China

Xinjiekou is the most prosperous commercial area in Nanjing and is known as the "No. 1 Business District in China". The degree of prosperity here is no less than that of China's first-tier cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou. Nanjing Xinjiekou Subway Station has as many as 24 exits, which may be the largest subway station in Asia.

During the Ming Dynasty, Nanjing Xinjiekou was the south gate of Nanjing City. The commercial prosperity of Nanjing Xinjiekou began during the Qing Dynasty. There are many historical and cultural relics in Xinjiekou, such as the Confucius Temple, the Nanjing Museum, and the Grand Baoen Temple.

Presidential Palace, political and military center in old China

The Presidential Palace is the largest and most fully preserved architectural complex among modern Chinese architectural relics. Nanjing Presidential Palace, also known as the former site of the Presidential Palace of old China, is located in Xuanwu District. On January 1, 1912, Sun Yat-sen was sworn in as the interim president of the Republic of China. During the old Republic of China period, the Presidential Palace was the center of political and military decision-making in China.

The Presidential Palace has a history of over 600 years, dating back to the Guide Marquis's Mansion and the Han Prince's Mansion in the early Ming Dynasty. In the Qing Dynasty, it was the Jiangning Weaving Bureau and the Viceroy of Liangjiang's Mansion that were used by the Kangxi and Qianlong Emperors in their Southern Inspection Tours. During the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, it was the Palace of Hong Xiuquan, the founder.

Confucius Temple, largest historical and cultural street in China

Located on the banks of the Qinhuai River in Nanjing, Confucius Temple is one of the largest historical and cultural streets in China. The Temple of Confucius is a large-scale ancient complex where Confucius is enshrined and worshipped. Founded in the third year of the Eastern Jin Dynasty (337), the Temple of Confucius is one of the four great literary temples in China and the largest traditional street market in China.

Confucius Temple is one of Nanjing's important tourist attractions, attracting a large number of tourists every year to come for sightseeing, shopping, food tasting, culture, and entertainment.

Qinhuai River, unique cultural heritage of Nanjing City

The Qinhuai River is close to the Confucius Temple, which is one of the historical and cultural symbols of Nanjing, and the Qinhuai River is the representative of the folk customs of Nanjing. The Qinhuai River is the mother river of Nanjing, and only in the Qinhuai River can you experience the unique cultural heritage of Nanjing City.

The beauty of the Qinhuai River in Nanjing is at night. At night, the Qinhuai River is brightly lit. Boats in the river are decorated with lanterns, and you can enjoy the beautiful scenery while drinking wine. In ancient China, the Qinhuai River was a gathering place for singing girls, the most famous being the Eight Beauties of Qinhuai.

Xuanwu Lake, largest royal garden Lake in China

Xuanwu Lake is the largest royal garden Lake in China, and it is known as the "Three Famous Lakes in Jiangnan" along with Hangzhou West Lake and Jiaxing South Lake. Xuanwu Lake Park is the largest urban theme Park in Nanjing. Xuanwu Lake has a perimeter of 9.8 kilometers and a total area of 560,000 square meters. There are many famous Nanjing attractions around Xuanwu Lake.

Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, world cultural heritage site

Ming Xiaoling is the tomb of Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang (1328-1398) and his empress, and it is also the only world cultural heritage site in Nanjing. Here, you can feel the grandeur and dignity of ancient emperors, and appreciate the beautiful scenery and culture.

The Xiaoling Mausoleum of the Ming Dynasty is most famous for its spirit path, with 24 stone beasts facing each other. The stone beasts have a huge size and are all carved from a single rock, representing the highest achievement of architecture and stone carving art in the early Ming Dynasty.

Purple Mountain (Zhongshan Mountain National Park)

Zhongshan Mountain has been known as one of the "Four Famous Mountains in Jiangnan" since ancient times. Purple Mountain (Zhongshan Mountain), with a scenic area of 45 square kilometers, has both cultural attractions and natural scenery. Zhongshan Mountain National Park is divided into two parts: the north and south, with the Ming Xiao Mausoleum in the south and the Zhongshan Mausoleum in the north. The Mausoleum of Sun Yat-sen was built in 1926 by Chiang Kai-shek, former President of the old Republic of China.

Nanjing Museum, one of the largest museums in Asia

Nanjing Museum is one of the three major museums in China, the other two being Forbidden City-The Palace Museum in Beijing and Taipei National Palace Museum. With a floor area of 80,000 square meters, the Nanjing Museum is one of the largest museums in Asia. Nanjing Museum has 432,768 pieces of various collections and 371,032 pieces of precious cultural relics, ranking second in China after the Palace Museum. The museum displays a wide range of art treasures and cultural relics, including bronzes, ceramics, paintings, jades, and brocades.

Nanjing foods you must try on your first trip

Nanjing is a famous historical and cultural city in China, as well as a food capital. Nanjing's food culture has a long history, with a rich variety of traditional dishes and specialty snacks. Among the most famous delicacies are Nanjing salted duck, duck blood soup with vermicelli, crispy duck pancakes, Imperial Robe crab soup dumplings, etc.

Best area to stay in Nanjing

Three areas are recommended for accommodation in Nanjing: Xinjiekou (the first choice for convenience), located in the central area of Nanjing, with food, drink, and entertainment nearby. Convenient transportation is an absolute advantage. The Confucius Temple (the first choice for bustling), surrounded by the Qinhuai scenic area, is very bustling and also one of the most suitable places for night trips in Nanjing. Xuanwu Lake (an affordable first choice), close to the local life circle of Nanjing, is relatively cheap around, and the traditional foods are also very authentic.

Best time to visit Nanjing

The best seasons to visit Nanjing are in the spring and autumn. In spring Nanjing, plum blossoms, cherry blossoms, and magnolia blossoms are particularly charming. In autumn Nanjing, the autumn leaves of the Ming Xiaoling Tomb and Qixia Mountain are like fire.

Nanjing travel guide: public transport in Nanjing

Plane: Nanjing Lukou Airport is about an hour's drive from the city. You can take the metro line S1 from the airport, which is very convenient to reach the city center.

Train and high-speed rail: Nanjing has two main railway stations, Nanjing Station and Nanjing South Station, both of which have subway connections to the city center. Nanjing Railway Station is an old railway station, close to the city center.

Subway: Nanjing's popular attractions are mainly in the city center, and it is easy to travel by subway to get to the attractions. On Metro Line 1, you can go to Nanjing Station, Nanjing South Station, Xuanwu Lake, Xinjiekou, Confucius Temple, and other attractions. On Metro Line 2, you can go to Zhongshan Mountain, Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum, Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, Nanjing Museum, Presidential Palace, and Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall during World War II.

Bus: The bus fare is usually 2 yuan.

Taxi: The starting price of a taxi is 11 yuan for 3 km and 2.4 yuan/km after the starting distance. In addition, you can also use the internet to hail a car.

Road trip: The parking space in downtown Nanjing is very tight, and the parking fee is very expensive. In order to save travel time, it is recommended to park your car in the parking lot.