Nanjing Travel Guide - Brief Information on Nanjing

Nanjing, ancient capital of China during a total of ten imperial dynasties, may not have the pomp of Beijing or the glitz of Shanghai, but it still packs oomph in the charm department.

The verdant city may date back to more than 2,500 years, but it is now a place where the old contrasts sharply with the brand new and gleaming. Long of cultural and historical importance, Nanjing – which means ‘Southern Capital’, offers a glimpse of the glories of ancient China and, at the same time, evidence of the country’s breathless economic ascent. It’s a curious mix of the laid-back and brand new, where you’re more than likely to find a gleaming high-rise structure at the end of your ramble down the charming and meandering backstreets.

Nanjing is known as one of the fiery pits of China-summers are hot and humid, while winters are icy and wet. But the leafy boulevards and wide pavements still beckon, and from spring through autumn, it is one of the most pleasant cities in the country.

The city is easy to navigate – metered taxis are cheap and easy to come by. The subway system, which opened a few years ago, also has clear signage and is a quick way to get around during traffic peak hours.

A good place to start the day in Nanjing is Xuanwu Park, just opposite the Nanjing Railway Station. The large park offers a variety of activity and amenities such as rental peddle boats and amusement rides. In spring, the Cherry Blossom Isle (Yingzhou) draws the largest crowds when the pink flowers are in bloom. Along the west bank of Xuanwu Lake, the old city wall which was built in the Ming dynasty still stands. Many segments of the old wall are extremely well preserved, despite apparently being held together by a (very strong) glutinous rice mixture.

For some history, as well as a quiet spot of peace, the Nanjing Museum is unbeatable. The leafy surroundings make for a good stroll on a nice day and there is also several things worth a look within the building itself. Of special note is the Treasure Hall, which showcases historical and religious relics around China, from as far afield as Tibet. Other exhibits include rare jade, earthenware, and precious metals. 

The Confucius Temple (Fuzi Miao) area is one of the city’s busiest commercial areas, thronging with crowds in the weekends and holidays. It is also the site of the original temple, once an imperial academy for Confucian studies. What remains now is a reconstruction, but it is easy to imagine the solemn and serious atmosphere that once prevailed. The area around the temple a pedestrian mall, dotted with kiosks and shops selling all kinds of knick knack and souvenirs.

For a taste of Nanjing’s best known snack food, there are various choices in the area, which has numerous teahouses, restaurants, and snack shops. Various canal-side restaurants offer specialties such as salt water duck and sweet lotus root stuffed with glutinous rice.  At night, the lights come on at full force, adding to the festive atmosphere.

If there is time for a day trip, head to Purple Mountain, just outside the old city wall in the east of Nanjing. There are a few lakes in the area which are popular with locals in summer, when swimming outdoors becomes a viable amusement option. The Sun Yat Sen Mausoleum, which houses the remains of the founding father of modern China, is of great historical importance to the Chinese and sits at the centre of the mountain. Assorted pavilions, gardens, and historical tombs are scattered around the area. The cable car is a good way to get to the top of the hill, providing a somewhat different view and saving some legwork.

When the weekend arrives, Nanjing’s trendy crowd congregates at 1912. The venue is similar to Shanghai’s famous food and entertainment hub Xintiandi. It comprises a collection of high end restaurants, bars and clubs housed in historical buildings built in the early 1920s. The venue is named for the year Sun Yat-Sen declared the birth of the Republic of China, which took place at the Presidential Palace just next to the entertainment hub.

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Simple Tomi's Nanjing Travel Guide : (3823 views)
Nanjing or ‘Ning’ in short is the capital of Jiangsu Province, China. Nanjing, which means ‘Southern Capital’, is also known as Nanking in English. It is situated in the lower Yangtze River drainage basin and Yangtze River Delta economic zone. Nanjin
Simple Tomi's Nanjing Travel Guide : (5922 views)
Nanjing, the capital of Jiang Su province situated near Yangtze River is an important city in China since ancient times. As per history, Fu Chai of Wu dynasty founded first city Yecheng in Nanjing area. Nanjing, which has an important place in the hi

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