Experience road tripping through ancient Chinese cities


Road trips are a great way to explore new destinations and immerse yourself in the local culture. One country that offers a unique and fascinating road trip experience is China. With its rich history, diverse landscapes, and ancient cities, road tripping through China can be an unforgettable adventure. In this article, we will take you on a journey through some of the most ancient Chinese cities, showcasing their historical significance, cultural heritage, and must-visit attractions. So fasten your seatbelts and get ready to experience road tripping through ancient Chinese cities.


Our road trip begins in Xi’an, the capital of Shaanxi Province and one of the oldest cities in China. Xi’an is famous for its Terracotta Army, a collection of life-sized statues that were buried with the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. These statues were discovered in 1974 and have since become one of the country’s most iconic attractions. In addition to the Terracotta Army, Xi’an is also home to the ancient city walls, which date back to the Ming Dynasty and offer panoramic views of the city.


Continuing on our road trip, we arrive in Luoyang, a city in Henan Province that served as the capital of nine ancient dynasties. Luoyang is best known for the Longmen Grottoes, a UNESCO World Heritage site that features thousands of Buddhist statues carved into the limestone cliffs. The grottoes date back to the Northern Wei Dynasty and provide a fascinating glimpse into China’s religious and artistic history. Another must-visit attraction in Luoyang is the White Horse Temple, which is considered to be the first Buddhist temple in China.

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Next on our road trip itinerary is Pingyao, a well-preserved ancient city in Shanxi Province. Pingyao is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is known for its well-preserved city walls, traditional courtyard houses, and ancient temples. Walking through the narrow streets of Pingyao feels like stepping back in time, with its traditional architecture and bustling markets. The city is also home to the Rishengchang Exchange Shop, which was the first draft bank in China and played a significant role in the country’s financial history.


Continuing our road trip, we make our way to Lijiang, a city in Yunnan Province that is famous for its well-preserved old town. Lijiang’s old town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is known for its traditional Naxi architecture, cobblestone streets, and canals. The city is also surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes, including the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and the Tiger Leaping Gorge. Exploring Lijiang allows visitors to immerse themselves in the local culture, witness traditional music and dance performances, and indulge in delicious local cuisine.


Our road trip concludes in Suzhou, a city in Jiangsu Province that is often referred to as the “Venice of the East” due to its numerous canals and classical gardens. Suzhou is known for its beautiful gardens, which are considered to be masterpieces of classical Chinese garden design. The Humble Administrator’s Garden, the Lingering Garden, and the Master of the Nets Garden are just a few examples of the stunning gardens that can be found in Suzhou. The city is also famous for its silk production, and visitors can learn about the silk-making process at the Suzhou Silk Museum.

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Road tripping through ancient Chinese cities offers a unique and immersive travel experience. From the Terracotta Army in Xi’an to the Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang, each city has its own historical significance and cultural heritage to explore. Whether you’re interested in ancient history, traditional architecture, or natural landscapes, these road trips will take you on a journey through China’s rich past and vibrant present. So pack your bags, hit the road, and get ready to experience the wonders of ancient Chinese cities.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1. Is it safe to road trip in China?

    Road tripping in China is generally safe, but it’s important to familiarize yourself with local traffic laws and regulations. It’s also recommended to have a valid international driving permit and comprehensive travel insurance.

  • 2. How long does it take to road trip through these ancient Chinese cities?

    The duration of the road trip will depend on your starting point and the amount of time you have. It’s recommended to allocate at least two weeks to fully explore these cities and their attractions.

  • 3. Can I rent a car for the road trip?

    Yes, car rental services are available in major cities in China. However, it’s important to note that driving in China can be challenging due to heavy traffic and language barriers. Hiring a local driver or joining a guided tour may be a more convenient option.

  • 4. What is the best time to road trip through these ancient Chinese cities?

    The best time to visit these cities is during the spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) seasons when the weather is mild and comfortable. Avoid visiting during national holidays, as popular attractions can get crowded.

  • 5. Are there any visa requirements for road tripping in China?

    Yes, most visitors to China will need a visa. It’s recommended to check the visa requirements and apply in advance through the Chinese embassy or consulate in your home country.

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