Pingyao Ancient City Wall

Pingyao Ancient City Wall was first built in 827 BC during the reign of King Xuan of Zhou. This wall was reconstructed during Ming Dynasty in 1370 to protect the country from Eastern Mongolian enemies. Though the city wall was under several restorations, it remains intact today and becomes the symbol of powerful Pingyao.

This wall is 6 kilometers long, 12 meters high and 3 to 6 meters wide. It is built purely from bricks and stones. This wall contains six gates: one each on the northern and southern side, and two each for the eastern and western sides. There are 72 watchtowers in these four gates where you can get the bird-eye view of this magnificent construction.

Ming Qing Street

Ming Qing Street is located in the heart of Pingyao. It used to a bustling and crowded trading street during Ming and Qing dynasties. Jin (another name of Shanxi) merchants used to gather here for business and they built a lot of mansions and residences along this street. You can imagine that Ming Qing Street is an ‘ancient Wall Street of China’ due to its prosperity.

Along this 750-meter-long street, there were 700 shops selling Chinese tea, paintings, furniture, jade ware and clothing in the ancient period. Nowadays, they remained exactly the same, which creates a rustic atmosphere for Pingyao Ancient City. Don’t forget to enjoy Shanxi cuisines in some restaurants here as well.

Wang Family Compound

35 kilometers from the southwest of Pingyao, Wang Family Compound was built during Qing Dynasty (about 200 years ago). This compound belonged to Wang family, from being a bean curd seller to entering into business and politics. This family is the symbol of China’s resilience and hard work against adversity.

With the total area of 150,000 square meters, this is the second largest private residence in China with 231 courtyards and 2078 houses. Wang Family Compound is impressive not only for its luxury but also for delicate traditional architectural style. There are five alleys, five forts and four gates in this compound. You can find many exquisite furnishing, carvings and sculptures displayed here.

Qiao Family Compound

40 kilometers from the northeast of Pingyao, Qiao Family Compound used to be a private residence of Qiao Zhiyong, the most brilliant member of the powerful Qiao Family. With an area of 9000 square meters, Qiao Family Compound contains 6 large courtyards, 20 small courtyards and more than 300 rooms.

This gigantic compound is divided into five parts: Zai Zhong Tang, De Xing Tang, Ning Shou Tang, Bao Yuan Tang and a garden. Qiao Family Compound is also a folk museum with more than 2000 pieces of precious cultural relics such as Chinese jade ware, painting and calligraphies.

Shuanglin Temple

Formerly known as Zhongdu Temple, Shuanglin Temple is a notable Buddhist building in Pingyao. It is estimated that this temple has a history of over 400 years. It was recognized as a UNESCO Heritage Site in 1997. There are more than 2000 sculptures in this temple. The most notable one is the exquisite and lifelike One-thousand-hands Avalokitesvara sculpture.