Located on the side of Yecheng Hill in Nanjing, Chaotian Gong (Heaven-worship Shrine) was started as a ceremonial site for the imperial house of the Ming Dynasty and was later converted into a Confucian temple and academy. Occupying 30,000 square meters in area, the compound is now the Nanjing City Museum, with exhibitions of artifacts from the local area.
Some 350 km (215 m) up the Yangzi River from Shanghai, Nanjing is the seat of the Jiangsu provincial government. One of the ancient capitals of China, the city has a long history behind it. Today it remains an important political, economic and cultural center in East China.
City Wall of Nanjing
Before the modern times almost all Chinese cities at county or above levels had walls as defense systems. Now only few of them still remain. Nanjing has preserved much of its old city wall - out of the original 33 kilometers of the wall built in the 14th century, 21 km still stand today, making it the largest of its kind in the world. Unlike city walls of most other cities in China, which took the form of squares or rectangles, the city wall of Nanjing is of irregular shape, evident constructed to take into consideration the waters and hills in the region.
Originally established in the 6th century, the Linggu Temple was rebuilt in the Ming and Qing Dynasty. In the early twentieth century part of the temple was converted into a cemetery for soliders of the Republican revolution. The Wuliang Hall of the temple was built in 1381, famous for the fact that no beams were used in the construction of the structure, which is very unusual in Chinese architecture. The temple is located east of Nanjing, about 1 km southeast of the Ming Xiao Mausoleum and 2 km south of the Mausoleum for Dr. Sun Yat-sen.
Mt. Zhong and Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum
Mt. Zhong lies northeast of Nanjing. This is a scenic zone with various historical and natural attractions, the most important of which is the mausoleum for Dr. Sun Yat-sen, founder of the Republic of China. Occupying 80,000 square meters of land, the complex was constructed in the 1920s. The mausoleum for the founder of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) (Ming Xiao Ling) is also nearby.
Nanjing Massacre Victims Memorial Hall
In Decenber 1937, after Japanese forces fighting in the Sino-Japanese War captured Nanjing, then the capital of the Republic of China, a great massacre took place, resulting in the death of hundreds of thousand deaths of both Chinese civilians and soldiers. Opened 1985, the Nanjing Massacre Victims Memorial Hall (Qinhua Rijun Nanjing Datusha Yunan Tongbao Jinianguan) presents the event to the public. The museum is located at No. 418, Shuiximen Street, in the eastern part of Nanjing.
Nanjing Yangzi River Bridge
The Yangzi River flows through Nanjing. There are now several bridges in the city that span the river. The most famous is the oldest one, simply called Nanjing Yangzi River Bridge (Nanjing Changjiang Daqiao), which was built in the 1960s. It was the first of its kind that the Chinese constructed without foreign assistance and was considered an engineering wonder at the time. Measured 4.6 km in total length, the bridge services trains, automobiles as well as pedestrians.
Qinhuai River and Confucian Temple
Qinhuai River flows through Nanjing. In the old days the river played an important role in trade and transportation in the region, bringing prosperity to the city. In particular, the stretch of the river outside the southeastern corner of the old walled city was known for a high concentration of businesses and a pleasure quarter. Some of the old establishments have been restored or rebuilt in recent years and become parts of a larger tourist zone. In the heart of the neighborhood is a Confucian temple. Originally built in the 11th century, the existing structure is a recent re-creation.
Republican Presidential Palace
This was where Dr. Sun Yat-sen declared the founding of the Republic of China after the Revolution of 1911. Later it served as the presidential palace of the Republic of China until 1949, when the Nationalist government headed by Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek was overthrown by the Chinese Communists. Before the Republican era, the compound was a royal palace dating back to the 14th century in the Ming Dynasty. Now it is the site of a museum.
Xiao Mauseleum of the Ming Dynasty
The Xiao Mauseleum is located in the eastern suburb of Nanjing, at the foot of the Zhong Mountain. One of the largest imperial burial places in China, the mausoleum was built in the late 14th and early 15th century, for the founding emperor of the Ming Dynasty, Zhu Yuanzhang, who was buried here along with his wife Empress Ma. Among the structures that still stand at the site are the Dismounting Archway, Memorial Stele, Five-Dragon Bridge, Soul Tower, and Precious Hall. Leading up to the main building of the mausoleum is a 1,800 m long Sacred Way, which was guarded by 24 sculptured animals. The architectural style of the Xiao Mausoleum was later used to build the Ming imperial tombs outside Beijing (the Ming court later relocated from Nanjing to Beijing).
Xuanwu Lake lies outside the northeastern section of the old Nanjing city wall. This is a lake with 370 hectares of water surface. Around the lake and on the five island in the lake there are numerous pavilions, temples, and shadowy trails, which make the park a nice place to take leisured walks or ride bicycles around to breathe in the history and culture in the area.
Yuhuatai Scenic Area
Yuhuatai is a scenic area in the southern district of Nanjing. The name "Yuhua" refers to the colorful stone pebbles that used to be found around the hill. Today Yuhuatai is a park with historical and revolutionary themes, with cemeteries and monuments dedicated to those who died in the Chinese revolutions during the 20th century.
Nanning Wuyu International Airport is 32 west of Nanning. Transportation: shuttle buses and taxis.
Nanjing Lukou International Airport is 36 km south of the city center of Nanjing. Transportation: shuttle buses, taxis, and city buses.