The small ancient city of Pingyao is known to be the best preserved walled town in all of China. It is located in the central Shanxi Province; you can take a private custom tour and travel back in time while visiting this amazing city. Pingyao has retained all its features, such as its red lantern-hung lanes, all of the beautiful courtyard architecture and apartment blocks that give you a real vision of what life was like in the Ming and Qing Dynasties.
Tourists can appreciate all the town's old age charms with lots of sights and city tours available. You can soak up the culture and try some tasty food while travelling around. The town which was originally built in the Western Zhou Dynasty (1045-256 BC), Han Chinese City is an excellent example of how things looked in that era.
The ancient city Pingyao was graciously added to the UNESCO's World Heritage List on December 31st, 1997 and is a popular destination for many travellers visiting this beautiful district of China. Read More...
See Ancient China on Private Guided Tours to the Temple of the City of God
Taking a tour to the Temple of the City God is sure to please every visitor in Pingyao. The Temple is a sacred place for people to pray to the City God, Kitchen God, and God of Wealth you can make Individual contributions to the locals are also worshipped at this place.
The Temple is situated just east of the Ancient Ming-Qing Str and covers an area of about 7,340 square meters. It has many beautiful towers and pavilions and is quite a traditional temple. Under the sun, the coloured glaze decorations make it even more pleasant to the eye.
This is an amazing experience and a great way to get a look into life in the Ming and Qing Dynasties with private Pingyao tours.
Top Things to Do in Píngyáo
Rishengchang Exchange Shop
Known as the 'Father of the Bank of China', the almost 200-year-old Rishengchang Exchange Shop tours are great as it is very close to the centre of the Ancient City. It once served as the central bank in the Qing Dynasty with over 30 branches in through China. Today, it serves an Exchange Shop Museum with local architecure and historical artefacts on display.
Qiao Family Compound
The Qiao Family Compound is about 42 km from Pingyao ancient city. The temple itself is decorated with classical Chinese architecture and represents the Chinese northern folk residences. It is quite exquisite to look at, and this family compound shows not only the fortune and prosperity of the Qiao family. Guided tours will show you the folk customs and culture of Shanxi Province in the period.
The Tianjixiang Museum
The Tianjixiang Museum is very popular on tours and is located in Pingyao County. Tours of this magnificent museum with its exquisite interiors are guaranteed to give you a great day out. Visitors can hire a tour guide who will be happy to go through the origins of all the artefacts and explain the history of this beautiful building.
City Wall of Pingyao
The City Wall of Pingyao is in short walk from the town and is a lovely way to stroll through the city. The wall has a great view of the old city, and the old houses that are preserved on the inside of the wall are fabulous. There is a new modern city with a lovely park on the other side. It gives you some unique views of the city, and a must do custom tour while you are there!
The Shuanglin Temple is situated in the Shanxi Province of China about 6-7 kilometres of the ancient city of Pingyao. It is a large Buddhist temple and is reputed to be the 'ancient painted sculptures museum'. It has over 2,000 colourful sculptures that reflect the exquisite skills of the artisans of the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties. Tourists can enjoy the sculptures of the four Heavenly Kings on private guided tours.
The Tianjixiang Museum
The Tianjixiang Museum is located in Pingyao County, although not as famous as the other museums, it is an unforgettable experience. It is quite impressive with its' many artefacts Siheyuan style interior and its' abundance of history. Visitors can hire a tour guide to go through all the artefacts history. It takes up an hour to tour the site; this is an excellent museum so don't miss out.
Pingyao Confucian Temple
The Confucian Temple is another one of many beautiful temples scattered across China. The Confucian temple begins with a beautiful courtyard, with a temple in the centre with a large Buddha statue amongst other deities. Visitors on sightseeing tours can burn incense and hang good luck placards and blessings on the trees nearby. There are many things here you can play around with on this site.
Ancient Government Office.
In the west of the Ancient Ming-Qing Street is the largest and well preserved old Government office. With an impressive area of 31,000 square yards, it served as an office to 149 magistrates in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Sometimes visitors can watch and performance of an old trial in the law court with cultural tours. There is also a prison in the building, where rusty torture equipment, old bedding and prisoners' uniforms are on display.
Ping Yao Temple of the City God
This is an absolutely fantastic site to visit on city tours in Pingyao. The Ping Yao Temple of the city God is a collection of traditional buildings with statues to a variety of gods. It is set in a series of pleasant courtyards, and take up to 40 mins to get around. It was built between 900-1100 but had two major fire accidents and had to be rebuilt after at least two major fire accidents.
Home to an outstanding collection of ancient statues and old halls, the Zhengho Temple is a great place to visit on private guided tours. It is one of the oldest wooden temples in China. There is the marvellous Hall of the Ten Thousand buddhas that were constructed in 963 AD and an unforgettable 1000-year old Dragon Scholar Tree. Don't miss out on a magnificent collection of 10th-century frescoes and sculptures.
Travel Tips for Pingyao
Best Time To Visit
A good time to travel to Pingyao is between the months of September to November. There is very little rain and can be cool, the weather in Pingyao is cool with not much rain perfect for sightseeing. A Chinese National Holiday is celebrated between October 1st to 7th and is quite crowded. There is China Pingyao International Photography Festival that runs held in late September.
The prices in Pingyao is like most places; there are cheap and cheerful or expensive, it all depends on you and the type of holiday you want and what your budget is. There are great places to eat but check with your tour guide. Hotels vary in standard and prices from US$30 - US$100 for a double room. To get around the city, take the metro, it is of a very high standard and cheaper than taxis.
Know Before Visiting
Arrange your visa through your tour travel agent before your arrival into China. Pingyao has now adopted the 72-hour visa-free transit policy since January 1st, 2016. The system is open to 51 countries. Make sure you plan your trip before you go, check the dates of any festivals visitors may want to see and arrange what private tours you want to do. Make sure you have adequate health insurance that covers all your needs.
The Pingyao climate is typically temperate with hot summer and cold winter. Annual average temperature is around 10 °C. Summers are hot is and rainy, usually in July and August. Temperatures can reach -12°C in winter with cold winds blowing from the north. While temperatures often vary widely between night and day. Between the months of March and October is the best time to visit Pingyao.