Pingyao: Ancient Center of Qin China

Pingyao Ancient City is the most well-preserved ancient settlement in China. The city was founded by the Zhou Dynasty in the 8th century BCE and constantly received developments in the following centuries. Many dynasties of China such as Tang, Han, Qin, and Qing enhanced the city’s general outlook and made it one of the most important cities of Ancient China. Nearly all of the structures in Pingyao date back centuries ago and have managed to keep their ancient identity intact. Moreover, the city is not only significant for China but also for the world. In 1997, UNESCO added the city to its Heritage List.

Pingyao towers

Ancient China was a key entity in Asia and they had some cities on which they focused more. Pingyao was one of these cities. The city was so important for the Chinese that they made it the seat of government for centuries. Moreover, the ancient city was the financial center of the Qing Empire. During the peak of the Qing, the city was home to 20 financial institutions. This number was more than half of the total in the whole empire. One of these institutions was Rishengchang which was the first draft bank in China. In addition, Rishengchang controlled the trade of silver in the country until the 20th century.

Pingyao castle

Aside from its financial significance for the Chinese Kingdom, Pingyao is also an architectural masterpiece. Temples, houses, statues, towers, and sculptures that have centuries of history fill the ancient city. However, the most impressive piece of the city is the extensive city walls that protected it for more than two thousand years.

Pingyao castle from above

Earliest records show that the city walls were built nearly 3000 years ago. The walls are 10 meters high and nearly 7 kilometers long. As the wall was quite extensive, the Chinese felt the need to put watchtowers to cover every area. There are exactly 72 watchtowers on the wall strategically placed every 50-100 meters. All in all, with all its impressive components, Pingyao is one of the most important places in China. It is also one of the most popular as in 2017, 12.7 million people visited the ancient city.

Pingyao castle close up
Pingyao city walls
Pingyao walls interior
Pingyao walls exterior
the ancient city
小红书@ 田tian
the ancient city tower
the ancient city tower during evening
小红书@ 猪肝面
the ancient city guardian
the ancient city other guardian statue