Nanjing Travel Guide: Top 55 Things to Do in Nanjing, China

Nanjing, often referred to as “Nanking” in historical contexts, is a city with a rich and diverse history that spans over 2,500 years. Located in the eastern part of China, Nanjing serves as the capital of Jiangsu Province and is one of the country’s most historically significant and culturally vibrant cities. With its stunning blend of ancient landmarks, modern skyscrapers, picturesque landscapes, and a thriving cultural scene, Nanjing offers a unique travel experience that will captivate the hearts of visitors from around the world.

History and Culture: Nanjing’s history is a tapestry woven with dynastic changes, imperial splendor, and moments of historical significance. The city served as the capital of several Chinese dynasties, most notably the Ming Dynasty, when it was known as “Yingtian Fu” or the “Capital of Peace.” During this period, the iconic Ming City Wall was constructed, which still partially stands today and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

One of the most solemn chapters in Nanjing’s history is the Nanjing Massacre (also known as the Rape of Nanking) during the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937-1938. The city is home to the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall, a somber reminder of the atrocities committed during that period and a place for reflection and remembrance.

Today, Nanjing is a vibrant and progressive city that retains a deep respect for its history and traditions. It is a hub of cultural activities, with numerous museums, theaters, and art galleries, such as the Nanjing Museum, Nanjing Opera, and the Nanjing Art Institute. Visitors can immerse themselves in the local culture by exploring ancient temples, traditional teahouses, and the lively Confucius Temple area.

Landmarks and Attractions: Nanjing boasts a plethora of attractions that cater to a wide range of interests.

  1. Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum: This mausoleum is the final resting place of the founding emperor of the Ming Dynasty, Zhu Yuanzhang, and is an architectural masterpiece surrounded by serene landscapes.
  2. Zhongshan Mountain (Purple Mountain): This scenic area is home to various attractions, including Sun Yat-sen’s Mausoleum, Linggu Temple, and Xuanwu Lake. The area offers picturesque hiking trails, lush forests, and historical sites.
  3. Nanjing City Wall: Parts of the ancient city wall have been meticulously preserved, offering visitors a chance to step back in time and experience the city’s historic fortifications.
  4. Confucius Temple: Located along the Qinhuai River, this bustling area features traditional architecture, street food, and vibrant nightlife.
  5. Jiming Temple: An ancient Buddhist temple with a history dating back over 1,500 years, offering a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.
  6. Presidential Palace: This historical complex served as the office of China’s leaders in the early 20th century. Visitors can explore the palace and its gardens while learning about China’s modern history.
  7. Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge: Known as the first bridge over the Yangtze River, this engineering marvel offers panoramic views of the city and the river.
  8. Nanjing Olympic Sports Center: For sports enthusiasts, this modern stadium complex hosts various sporting events and concerts.

Cuisine: Nanjing is renowned for its unique culinary traditions, which include a wide range of dishes that reflect the region’s history and geography. Some must-try dishes and snacks include:

  1. Salted Duck: Nanjing is famous for its salted duck, a delicacy that is known for its tender meat and rich flavor.
  2. Duck Blood and Vermicelli Soup: A local favorite, this soup combines duck blood, vermicelli noodles, and various seasonings for a flavorful and hearty meal.
  3. Nanjing Salted Duck Pancake: This savory pancake is filled with salted duck meat, creating a delightful blend of textures and flavors.
  4. Steamed Soup Dumplings (Tangbao): Nanjing’s version of soup dumplings is cherished for its juicy, flavorful filling and thin, delicate wrappers.
  5. Sesame Pancakes: A popular street food, sesame pancakes are crispy on the outside and filled with sweet or savory ingredients.
  6. Nanjing Salted Duck Roast: A delightful dish of roasted duck with a salty and crispy skin that is a local specialty.

Shopping: Nanjing offers a diverse shopping experience, from traditional markets to modern shopping malls. Some of the popular shopping areas include:

  1. Fuzimiao (Confucius Temple) Market: This area is famous for its lively market filled with handicrafts, antiques, and street food.
  2. Xinjiekou: Known as the city’s commercial center, Xinjiekou is lined with department stores, boutiques, and international brands.
  3. Hunan Road Pedestrian Street: A bustling street filled with shops, restaurants, and entertainment options.

Transportation: Nanjing is well-connected by air, rail, and road. The Nanjing Lukou International Airport serves as the primary gateway for international and domestic flights. The city is also a major hub for high-speed rail, making it easily accessible from other major cities in China.

Conclusion: Nanjing’s rich history, diverse culture, stunning landmarks, and delectable cuisine make it a destination that should be on every traveler’s bucket list. Whether you’re interested in exploring ancient history, enjoying modern conveniences, or savoring unique flavors, Nanjing has something to offer everyone. So, plan your visit to this captivating city and immerse yourself in its charm and beauty.

Nanjing City Guide: A Brief History Of Nanjing, China For Visitors

Nanjing is a city with a history that stretches back over 2,500 years. As one of China’s ancient capitals, Nanjing has played a pivotal role in shaping the country’s culture, politics, and society. This comprehensive guide will take you on a journey through the rich history of Nanjing, offering insights into the city’s past that will enhance your visit as a traveler.

Ancient Nanjing: Nanjing’s history dates back to the Warring States period (475–221 BCE) when it was known as Yecheng. During the Qin Dynasty (221–206 BCE), the first Chinese emperor, Qin Shi Huang, established a city here. Subsequently, during the Three Kingdoms period (220–280 CE), it became a key strategic location, and the city’s name changed to Jianye under the Eastern Wu Kingdom. Jianye served as the capital of Eastern Wu, and its prosperity during this period contributed to the city’s rich cultural heritage.

Imperial Capital of Multiple Dynasties: Nanjing has had the distinction of serving as the capital of several Chinese dynasties throughout history, each leaving its unique mark on the city:

  1. The Six Dynasties Period (220–589 CE): After the fall of the Eastern Wu, Nanjing continued to be a prominent cultural and political center during the Southern Dynasties period, encompassing the Song, Qi, Liang, Chen, and Wei Dynasties. This era witnessed the flourishing of literature, arts, and Buddhism.
  2. The Ming Dynasty (1368–1644): Perhaps the most significant period in Nanjing’s history, the Ming Dynasty established the city as the capital, and it was known as Yingtian. The construction of the iconic Ming City Wall, which partially stands to this day, took place during this time. The Mausoleum of Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming Dynasty, is a testament to the grandeur of the era.
  3. The Taiping Rebellion (1850–1864): During this tumultuous period, Nanjing became the capital of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, a short-lived state led by Hong Xiuquan. This rebellion resulted in significant destruction, including the loss of many historical treasures.

Nanjing Massacre and World War II: One of the darkest chapters in Nanjing’s history is the Nanjing Massacre (also known as the Rape of Nanking) that occurred in 1937-1938 during the Second Sino-Japanese War. Japanese forces captured the city, and what followed was a period of widespread atrocities, including mass killings, sexual violence, and looting. The Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall stands as a solemn reminder of these horrific events and serves as a place for remembrance and reflection.

Modern History: In the post-World War II era, Nanjing underwent significant reconstruction and development. The city was declared the capital of Jiangsu Province and has since become a major center for education, industry, and culture in China.

Historical Sites and Landmarks: Visitors to Nanjing can explore numerous historical sites and landmarks that showcase its rich history:

  1. Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum: The final resting place of Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming Dynasty. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an architectural marvel.
  2. Zhongshan Mountain (Purple Mountain): Home to various historical and cultural attractions, including Sun Yat-sen’s Mausoleum and Linggu Temple.
  3. Nanjing City Wall: Parts of the ancient city wall still stand, providing a glimpse into the city’s historic fortifications.
  4. Confucius Temple: A lively area along the Qinhuai River filled with traditional architecture, street food, and cultural performances.
  5. Jiming Temple: An ancient Buddhist temple with a history dating back over 1,500 years.
  6. Presidential Palace: Once the office of China’s early 20th-century leaders, it offers insights into modern Chinese history.

Nanjing’s history is a captivating tapestry of ancient dynasties, imperial splendor, and moments of great triumph and tragedy. As a visitor, immersing yourself in the city’s historical sites and monuments will not only provide a deeper understanding of China’s past but also leave you with a profound appreciation for Nanjing’s enduring cultural legacy.

Nanjing Top Attractions and Best Places to Visit in China

Introduction to Nanjing

Considered to be the historical southern capital of China through several dynasties over the ages, Nanjing occupies a significant place in the cultural history of this great nation.

From tombs to temples, there is plenty of evidence strewn through this city of 3.6 million people that will communicate its prior importance to any visitor that happens upon this place. Its recent past is much more sombre however, as it is was the site of some of the worst atrocities committed during the Second World War by the Japanese empire.

On the lighter side of things, the mountainous scenery that can be found through much of Eastern China can also be found here, along with more than a few peaceful lakes.

All in all though, Nanjing is like an open-air museum – by coming here, you will gain a greater appreciation of Chinese history, as its remnants are all around you within this relatively small city.

Cultural Experiences in Nanjing

The first place worth checking out in Nanjing should be the Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum, located on scenic Purple Mountain.  This monument is the final resting place of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the leader of the revolution against the Imperial Qing dynasty in 1911 that abolished monarchial rule in China, giving way for the establishment of the Republic of China (as it was then called).

The approach to this tomb is elaborate, if slightly intimidating for those who are out of shape, as a massive concrete staircase must be ascended to reach the main structure where the final remains of the father of Modern China sleeps in peace.

If you need another reason to oppose war and all its horrific effects, pay a visit to the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall, a museum and contemplative place that gives homage to the victims of one of the worst mass killings that occurred during the Second World War.  When the Japanese army overran Nanjing, four to six weeks of mass executions, looting and burning took place.

When the madness ended, it was estimated that over 300,000 civilians and Chinese soldiers were killed.  One mass grave contained more than 10,000 bodies, and today, some of these skeletal remains, along with artifacts from this hellish period of Nanjing’s history are on display to show visitors what war is truly like.

Finally, check out some of the structures from Nanjing’s imperial days by checking out the Ming Palace.  Originally much larger than what remains today, its layout later inspired the construction of the Forbidden City in Beijing when the power centre of the country shifted north. Today, only gates, some stone bridges and carvings still remain, but those looking for a glimpse of the far past should still make time to see this site.

Nanjing contains many other worthy sights to see from a cultural standpoint, from the Confucius Temple where government exams were held for hundreds of years, to the City Walls of Nanjing, which loop around the city in relatively good condition, considering their age of almost 600 years.  The Gate of China is one location on the wall that shouldn’t be missed, as its complex construction makes it one of the more fascinating aspects of this feat of engineering.

One could spend a week in Nanjing and not get in all the historical points of interest that are worth seeing.  If you are a culture vulture, do not miss this place on your trip to China!

Other Cultural Attractions: Trip to Nanjing, China

The aforementioned Purple Mountain is a respite from the humid and polluted city centre of Nanjing, with many opportunities for hiking.  These paths often lead to shrines, pagodas and temples, as well as major attractions (like the mausoleum mentioned earlier in the article).  For those who are less fleet of foot, there is a tram that will take you to the top of this peak.

Those seeking their relaxation by the lake will find plenty of serenity by heading for Xuanwu Lake. A favoured gathering place for locals, one will spot them practicing their tai chi at the end of a long work/school day, or flying kites with their kids on a windy weekend day.  Several bridges/causeways also link to islands within this placid body of water, granting you a chance to find some supremely Zen surroundings that stand in contrast to the controlled chaos of the urban centre.

Those looking to soak their cares away can find release in the nearby Tangshan Hot Springs, a short one hour drive east of Nanjing. With a spa also being located on site, one can let the hot water loosen their tense muscles, while the mountain scenery relaxes the mind, leaving your masseuse to gladly finish the job.

Top 55 Things To Do in Nanjing For Visitors

Nanjing offers a wide range of activities and attractions for visitors to explore and enjoy. Whether you’re interested in history, culture, nature, or cuisine, Nanjing has something for everyone. Here is a comprehensive list of the top 55 things to do in Nanjing:

1. Visit the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum: Explore the stunning mausoleum of Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming Dynasty. The grand architecture and serene surroundings make it a must-see.

2. Explore Zhongshan Mountain (Purple Mountain): Spend a day hiking through the lush forests of Purple Mountain, where you can visit Sun Yat-sen’s Mausoleum, Linggu Temple, and enjoy breathtaking views of the city.

3. Walk on the Nanjing City Wall: Parts of the ancient city wall have been preserved, allowing you to take a leisurely stroll and admire the historical fortifications.

4. Discover the Confucius Temple: Wander through the lively area along the Qinhuai River, exploring traditional architecture, street food, and cultural performances.

5. Visit Jiming Temple: This ancient Buddhist temple with a history dating back over 1,500 years offers a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.

6. Explore the Presidential Palace: Gain insights into modern Chinese history by touring the former office of China’s early 20th-century leaders.

7. Reflect at the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall: Pay your respects and learn about the tragic events of the Nanjing Massacre during World War II.

8. Admire the Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum: Visit the final resting place of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, a pivotal figure in Chinese history and a key leader in the 1911 revolution that ended imperial rule.

9. Enjoy Xuanwu Lake: Relax by the scenic Xuanwu Lake, rent a boat, or take a leisurely walk around the park to escape the urban bustle.

10. Visit Nanjing Museum: Explore the city’s premier museum, showcasing a vast collection of historical artifacts, artwork, and cultural treasures.

11. Wander around Qinhuai Ancient Street: Immerse yourself in history as you stroll down this charming street, known for its traditional architecture, shops, and snacks.

12. Admire the Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge: Take a walk or cycle along this iconic bridge that spans the Yangtze River, offering panoramic views of the cityscape.

13. Marvel at the Porcelain Tower of Nanjing: Although the original tower no longer exists, the modern reconstruction is a magnificent sight and a symbol of Nanjing.

14. Discover the Nanjing Science and Technology Museum: Perfect for families and science enthusiasts, this museum offers interactive exhibits and educational fun.

15. Explore Qixia Temple: Located at the foot of Qixia Mountain, this ancient Buddhist temple features intricate stone carvings and lush surroundings.

16. Visit Nanjing Drum Tower: Discover the historical significance of this ancient tower and enjoy panoramic views of the city from its top.

17. Experience a traditional tea ceremony: Visit a local teahouse and partake in a traditional Chinese tea ceremony to savor the flavors and learn about tea culture.

18. Attend a Peking Opera performance: Experience this traditional Chinese art form at one of Nanjing’s theaters, such as the Nanjing Peking Opera Theater.

19. Shop at Xinjiekou: Nanjing’s commercial hub, Xinjiekou, offers numerous department stores, boutiques, and international brands for shopping enthusiasts.

20. Explore the Nanjing Olympic Sports Center: Catch a sporting event or concert at this modern stadium complex.

21. Visit the Presidential Palace of Nanjing: Explore the former residence of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, which served as the headquarters for the Kuomintang government.

22. Admire the views from Zifeng Tower: Head to the observation deck of Zifeng Tower, one of Nanjing’s tallest skyscrapers, for panoramic views of the city.

23. Discover the Jiangsu Art Gallery: View contemporary and traditional Chinese art collections in a serene setting.

24. Experience the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Museum: This museum provides a comprehensive historical account of the Nanjing Massacre.

25. Enjoy a boat ride on the Qinhuai River: Take a leisurely cruise along the picturesque river to appreciate the city’s skyline from a different perspective.

26. Visit the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom History Museum: Learn about the Taiping Rebellion and the history of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom.

27. Explore Nanjing International Youth Cultural Center: This cultural complex features art exhibitions, performances, and beautiful architectural design.

28. Attend the Nanjing International Plum Blossom Festival: Held in early spring, this festival celebrates the beauty of plum blossoms with various activities and exhibitions.

29. Wander through Jiangnan Examination Hall: Explore this well-preserved ancient examination hall, which was once a crucial center for imperial examinations.

30. Discover Chaotian Palace: Visit this historical palace complex that served as a government office and later as a Buddhist temple.

31. Experience the Nanjing Museum of Paleontology: Delve into the world of dinosaurs and fossils at this fascinating museum.

32. Hike to the Peak of Jiao Mountain: For nature enthusiasts, a hike to the summit of Jiao Mountain offers stunning vistas of the surrounding landscape.

33. Visit the Yuhuatai Scenic Area: This park honors fallen heroes and offers a serene environment for reflection.

34. Explore the Jiangsu Confucius Temple: Discover another Confucius Temple in Jiangsu Province, featuring traditional architecture and cultural exhibitions.

35. Attend the Nanjing Jazz and World Music Festival: If you visit in October, you can enjoy world-class music performances at this annual festival.

36. Explore Nanjing Drum Tower Food Street: Sample a wide range of local dishes and street food in this bustling food street.

37. Take a stroll in Mochou Lake Park: Enjoy the peaceful atmosphere and beautiful scenery in this charming park.

38. Discover the Nanjing Library: Marvel at the modern architecture of this library and explore its extensive collection.

39. Explore the Sun Palace: Wander through the scenic Sun Palace Park, featuring gardens, pavilions, and historical sites.

40. Visit the Purple Mountain Observatory: For astronomy enthusiasts, this observatory offers a chance to explore the night sky and learn about celestial phenomena.

41. Explore the Nanjing Niushoushan Cultural Park: Visit the impressive Niushou Mountain and the grand cultural complex dedicated to Buddhism.

42. Enjoy a hot spring bath: Relax and rejuvenate at one of Nanjing’s hot spring resorts, such as Tangshan Hot Springs.

43. Take a day trip to Yangzhou: Explore the nearby city of Yangzhou, known for its historic gardens, canal network, and traditional architecture.

44. Visit the Nanjing Yangtze River Dolphin Aquarium: Learn about local aquatic life and enjoy dolphin and sea lion shows.

45. Experience Nanjing University: Stroll through the beautiful campus of Nanjing University, which boasts historic buildings and lush greenery.

46. Discover the Jiangsu Folk Museum: Explore traditional Chinese culture and folk art in this intriguing museum.

47. Attend the Nanjing International Plum Blossom Music Festival: Combine music and natural beauty at this annual event in Plum Blossom Hill.

48. Explore the Nanjing Lao Men Dong Park: This park features caves, sculptures, and gardens, providing a unique and tranquil setting.

49. Visit the Nanjing Underwater World: Explore marine life and enjoy underwater tunnels at this family-friendly attraction.

50. Take a bike ride around Xuanwu Lake: Rent a bike and enjoy a scenic ride around the picturesque Xuanwu Lake.

51. Explore the Nanjing Yangshan Forest Park: Hike, picnic, and appreciate the diverse flora and fauna in this beautiful forest park.

52. Visit the Nanjing Folk Customs Museum: Gain insights into the traditional customs and lifestyles of the local people.

53. Attend the Nanjing International Auto Expo: If you’re a car enthusiast, this event showcases the latest automobile innovations.

54. Explore Nanjing Drum Tower Square: This bustling square is a central gathering place and a great spot for people-watching.

55. Try local cuisine: Sample Nanjing’s famous dishes, such as salted duck, duck blood and vermicelli soup, and sesame pancakes, at local restaurants and street vendors.

With its rich history, cultural heritage, and diverse range of activities, Nanjing is a city that offers an enriching and memorable experience for travelers. Whether you’re interested in exploring ancient monuments, enjoying natural beauty, or indulging in culinary delights, Nanjing has it all.

What To Eat and Drink in Nanjing, China

Nanjing offers a delectable array of dishes and beverages that will satisfy any palate. As you explore this ancient city, be sure to embark on a culinary journey to savor the local flavors and discover the unique dishes and drinks that make Nanjing’s food scene truly exceptional.

1. Salted Duck (盐水鸭, Yánshuǐ Yā): Nanjing is renowned for its succulent salted duck, which is a must-try for any visitor. The ducks are marinated in a mixture of salt, soy sauce, spices, and herbs, resulting in tender and flavorful meat. You’ll often find whole salted ducks hanging in local restaurants and markets.

2. Duck Blood and Vermicelli Soup (鸭血粉丝汤, Yāxiě Fěnsī Tāng): This hearty soup combines duck blood, vermicelli noodles, and various seasonings, creating a rich and satisfying meal. The duck blood has a unique texture, and the broth is often seasoned with fragrant spices.

3. Nanjing Salted Duck Pancake (盐水鸭夹饼, Yánshuǐ Yā Jiābǐng): A popular street food, these savory pancakes are filled with slices of salted duck, creating a delightful blend of textures and flavors. They are crispy on the outside and savory on the inside, making them a favorite snack among locals.

4. Steamed Soup Dumplings (汤包, Tāng Bāo): Nanjing’s version of soup dumplings is cherished for its juicy, flavorful filling and thin, delicate wrappers. These dumplings are typically filled with a mixture of minced pork, broth, and seasonings, making them a delightful and comforting treat.

5. Sesame Pancakes (煎堆, Jiān Duī): Sesame pancakes are a popular street food in Nanjing. These round, golden treats are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, with a generous coating of sesame seeds. They can be enjoyed sweet or savory, with fillings like red bean paste or minced meat.

6. Nanjing Salted Duck Roast (盐水鸭烧烤, Yánshuǐ Yā Shāokǎo): Experience the tantalizing flavors of Nanjing’s salted duck prepared as a barbecue dish. The duck is grilled to perfection, resulting in a smoky and savory delight that pairs wonderfully with local sauces.

7. Lion’s Head Meatballs (狮子头, Shīzi Tóu): These oversized meatballs made from a mixture of minced pork and vegetables are a classic Jiangsu dish. They are typically served in a savory brown sauce and are known for their tender texture and flavorful taste.

8. Nanjing-Style Salted Pork (南京腊肉, Nánjīng Làròu): Cured and salted pork is a staple in Nanjing cuisine. The pork is often thinly sliced and used as a flavorful addition to various dishes or enjoyed on its own as a savory snack.

9. Nanjing-Style Sesame Noodles (南京麻酱面, Nánjīng Májiàng Miàn): These cold noodles are dressed in a rich and creamy sesame sauce, typically garnished with cucumber, bean sprouts, and sometimes shredded chicken. The combination of flavors and textures makes it a refreshing and satisfying dish, especially on a hot day.

10. Scallion Pancakes (葱油饼, Cōngyóu Bǐng): A favorite breakfast or snack option, scallion pancakes are crispy and flaky, with layers of scallions and sesame seeds. They are often served with dipping sauces like soy sauce or vinegar.

11. Jiangsu Cuisine (苏菜, Sū Cài): Jiangsu cuisine, of which Nanjing is a part, is known for its delicate flavors, fresh ingredients, and meticulous cooking techniques. You’ll find an array of dishes that emphasize the natural tastes of seafood, poultry, and vegetables.

12. Nanjing Sweet Dumplings (汤圆, Tāng Yuán): These glutinous rice dumplings are often filled with sweet sesame or red bean paste and served in a warm, sweet broth. They are a popular dessert and are especially enjoyed during the Lantern Festival.

13. Three-Hot Soup (三热汤, Sān Rè Tāng): This spicy and tangy soup combines tofu, green beans, and ground pork in a fiery broth. It’s a flavorful and warming dish that is perfect for spice lovers.

14. Nanjing-Style Squirrel-Shaped Mandarin Fish (松鼠桂鱼, Sōngshǔ Guì Yú): This visually striking dish features a whole mandarin fish fried until crispy and served with a sweet and sour sauce. The crispy exterior resembles a squirrel’s tail.

15. Nanjing-Style Duck Blood Soup (南京鸭血粉丝汤, Nánjīng Yāxiě Fěnsī Tāng): A variation of duck blood and vermicelli soup, this Nanjing specialty includes additional ingredients like mushrooms and bamboo shoots.

16. Local Snacks at Fuzimiao (Confucius Temple) Market:: When visiting the Confucius Temple area, don’t miss the opportunity to sample various local snacks, including crispy stinky tofu, steamed buns, and candied haws on a stick.

17. Jiangsu-Style Vegetarian Dishes (苏素, Sū Sù): Jiangsu cuisine offers a wide range of vegetarian dishes that highlight the freshness of seasonal vegetables and tofu, often prepared with delicate seasonings.

Now, let’s explore the beverages and drinks that complement these delicious dishes:

18. Osmanthus Flower Tea (桂花茶, Guìhuā Chá): This fragrant tea is made by infusing dried osmanthus flowers in hot water. It has a delicate, sweet aroma and is often served as a refreshing beverage.

19. Suzhou-Style Biluochun Tea (碧螺春茶, Bìluóchūn Chá): Nanjing’s proximity to Suzhou means you can enjoy the renowned Biluochun green tea, known for its unique flavor and aroma.

20. Plum Juice (杨梅汁, Yángméi Zhī): Sip on a glass of refreshing plum juice, a popular beverage in Nanjing known for its sweet and slightly tart taste.

21. Jiangsu-Style Yellow Wine (苏酒, Sū Jiǔ): Jiangsu is famous for its yellow wine, a traditional Chinese rice wine. It is often served warm and pairs wonderfully with local dishes.

22. Soy Milk (豆浆, Dòu Jiāng): Start your day with a cup of fresh soy milk, often accompanied by savory or sweet snacks like fried dough sticks (youtiao) or steamed buns (mantou).

23. Bubble Tea (珍珠奶茶, Zhēnzhū Nǎichá): Like in many Chinese cities, bubble tea shops are popular in Nanjing, offering a variety of tea and milk tea options with tapioca pearls.

24. Baijiu (白酒): For those looking for a stronger drink, Baijiu is a Chinese liquor made from sorghum or other grains. It’s a traditional and potent spirit enjoyed during celebrations and special occasions.

25. Nanjing Beer (南京啤酒, Nánjīng Píjiǔ): Nanjing has its own local beer brands, and you can enjoy a cold beer at many restaurants and bars around the city.

26. Fresh Fruit Juices (新鲜果汁, Xīnxiān Guǒzhī): Nanjing’s markets and street vendors offer a variety of fresh fruit juices, allowing you to sample seasonal flavors.

27. Jiangsu-Style Herbal Tea (苏式药茶, Sūshì Yàochá): Jiangsu’s herbal teas are made from a blend of medicinal herbs and are believed to have health benefits.

28. Local Craft Cocktails: Some upscale bars in Nanjing offer craft cocktails inspired by local flavors and ingredients, providing a modern twist on traditional beverages.

29. Try Unique Street Food: Nanjing is known for its diverse street food scene. While exploring the city, keep an eye out for vendors selling innovative snacks like stuffed buns, grilled skewers, and fried delights.

30. Nanjing-Style Ice Cream (南京冰淇淋, Nánjīng Bīngqílín): Nanjing has its own style of ice cream, often wrapped in thin pancakes and filled with various flavors and toppings.

31. Sample Sweet and Savory Pastries: Nanjing is famous for its pastries, including sweet treats like mooncakes and savory options like baked sesame buns.

32. Nanjing-Style Noodles (南京河粉, Nánjīng Héfěn): Don’t miss the chance to try Nanjing’s unique style of noodles, often served with a variety of toppings and sauces.

33. Local Wine and Vineyards: Visit local wineries and vineyards in the surrounding countryside to taste regional wines and enjoy picturesque landscapes.

34. Try Rice Wine (米酒, Mǐ Jiǔ): Nanjing is also known for its production of rice wine, which has a milder flavor compared to Baijiu and is often enjoyed during festivals and special occasions.

35. Fresh Seafood: Being close to the Yangtze River and the East China Sea, Nanjing offers a variety of fresh seafood dishes, including fish, crabs, and shrimp.

36. Jiangsu-Style Preserved Vegetables (苏菜腌菜, Sū Cài Yāncài): These pickled vegetables are commonly served as a side dish to complement the main meal.

37. Yangzhou-Style Dim Sum (扬州小吃, Yángzhōu Xiǎochī): Since Yangzhou is nearby, you can enjoy Yangzhou-style dim sum, including dishes like steamed dumplings, wontons, and spring rolls.

38. Local Tofu Dishes: Explore the various tofu-based dishes that are a part of Nanjing’s culinary tradition. Tofu is often paired with savory sauces and seasonings.

39. Roast Meat Dishes: Nanjing is known for its succulent roasted meats, such as duck, pork, and chicken, often seasoned with fragrant spices.

40. Seasonal Delicacies: Depending on the season of your visit, don’t miss the opportunity to try seasonal specialties such as bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, lotus root, and more.

41. Jiangsu-Style Fish Dishes: Jiangsu cuisine pays great attention to fish preparation, often cooking it in delicate broths or sauces to highlight the natural flavor of the fish.

42. Street Food Markets: Wander through local street food markets, such as the one near Fuzimiao (Confucius Temple), to sample a wide range of local delights.

43. Fruit Platters: Try a fruit platter with a selection of fresh fruits, which can be a refreshing and healthy dessert option.

44. Hot Pot: Warm up during the colder months with a hot pot meal where you can cook a variety of ingredients in a flavorful broth at your table.

45. Local Sauces and Condiments: Explore the various sauces and condiments used in Nanjing cuisine, such as sesame paste, fermented tofu, and chili sauces.

46. Yangcheng Lake Hairy Crab (洞庭湖大闸蟹, Dòngtíng Hú Dàzháxiè): If you visit during the hairy crab season (typically in autumn), don’t miss the opportunity to savor these prized and flavorful crabs from nearby Yangcheng Lake.

47. Seafood Hot Pot: Enjoy a seafood hot pot with fresh ingredients like fish, shrimp, clams, and vegetables cooked in a fragrant broth.

48. Taste Traditional Jiangsu Desserts: Satisfy your sweet tooth with traditional Jiangsu desserts, including glutinous rice balls, sweet soups, and almond jelly.

49. Try Shredded Dried Tofu (丝嫩干, Sī Nèn Gàn): These thin strips of dried tofu are often stir-fried with vegetables and savory seasonings, creating a tasty and textural dish.

50. Visit Local Food Markets: Explore local food markets in Nanjing to discover fresh produce, seafood, and street food snacks while immersing yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of daily life.

51. Nanjing-Style Crab Meat and Roe Dumplings (蟹粉小笼包, Xiè Fěn Xiǎolóng Bāo): These dumplings are a seasonal delicacy, featuring a rich filling of crab meat and roe.

52. Jiangsu-Style Stir-Fried Eel (糯米炒鳝, Nuòmǐ Chǎo Shàn): This savory dish combines tender pieces of eel with glutinous rice for a delightful and filling meal.

53. Try Local Stews (炖汤, Dùn Tāng): Nanjing’s cuisine includes a variety of hearty stews made with meat, seafood, or vegetables, simmered in flavorful broths.

54. Jiangsu-Style Braised Pork Belly (红烧肉, Hóngshāo Ròu): Indulge in this classic Chinese dish of braised pork belly, typically featuring tender meat with a caramelized glaze.

55. Sip on Herbal Infusions (药茶, Yào Chá): Nanjing offers a range of herbal infusions and teas believed to have health benefits, making them a soothing and aromatic choice.

Top Restaurants In Nanjing, China

Nanjing is a city steeped in history, culture, and culinary traditions. Its rich heritage dates back more than 2,500 years, and this deep-rooted history is reflected in the city’s diverse and delectable food scene. Whether you’re a fan of traditional Chinese cuisine, seeking international flavors, or looking for unique local specialties, Nanjing has a plethora of dining options to satisfy your taste buds. In this guide, we’ll explore some of the top restaurants in Nanjing, showcasing their unique offerings and contributions to the city’s culinary landscape.

  1. Duck Blood Soup at Jinling Hotel:
    • Jinling Hotel, one of Nanjing’s most prestigious hotels, is renowned for its traditional Nanjing cuisine. Their signature dish is the Duck Blood Soup (Ya Xue Tang), a local delicacy made from duck blood, tofu, and a savory broth. The soup is a testament to Nanjing’s rich culinary heritage and is a must-try for anyone visiting the city.
  2. Salted Duck at Deji Plaza:
    • Deji Plaza is a popular shopping and dining destination in Nanjing. One of the standout dishes here is the Salted Duck (Yan Su Ji), a flavorful and tender duck preparation that is marinated in a special blend of salt and spices before being roasted to perfection. It’s a delightful blend of crispy skin and succulent meat.
  3. Nanjing Impressions:
    • Nanjing Impressions is a restaurant chain dedicated to preserving and promoting traditional Nanjing cuisine. The restaurant’s interior is designed to resemble an old Nanjing street, providing a unique dining atmosphere. Some must-try dishes include Jinling Salted Duck, Nanjing Salted Pork, and Duck Blood and Vermicelli Soup.
  4. Yun Jin Ge:
    • Yun Jin Ge is a fine-dining establishment specializing in Huaiyang cuisine, which is known for its delicate flavors and exquisite presentation. Located within the InterContinental Nanjing, this restaurant offers a selection of dishes that showcase the artistry and culinary skills of the chefs. Try the Braised Fish Maw with Crab Meat, a delicacy that exemplifies the elegance of Huaiyang cuisine.
  5. Xiao Long Bao at Din Tai Fung:
    • While Din Tai Fung is a Taiwanese chain, it has gained a strong presence in Nanjing due to its exceptional dumplings, particularly the Xiao Long Bao (steamed pork dumplings). These delicate dumplings are filled with flavorful broth and are a favorite among locals and tourists alike.
  6. Nanjing Salted Duck at Guo Ya Xiao Zhen:
    • Guo Ya Xiao Zhen is a charming restaurant known for its dedication to preserving traditional Nanjing cuisine. Their Nanjing Salted Duck is a standout dish, marinated in a secret blend of herbs and spices, then air-dried to perfection. The result is a tender and flavorful duck with crispy skin.
  7. Qinhuai Renjia:
    • Located near the famous Qinhuai River, this restaurant offers a picturesque dining experience along with authentic local dishes. Their signature dish is the Qinhuai River Smoked Duck, which is slow-cooked to perfection and infused with a smoky flavor that’s truly unforgettable.
  8. Noodle Shops in Fuzimiao:
    • Fuzimiao (Confucius Temple) is a bustling area in Nanjing known for its vibrant street food scene. Here, you can find numerous noodle shops offering a wide variety of noodles, from classic hand-pulled noodles to spicy dan dan noodles. It’s a great place to explore and sample different noodle dishes.
  9. Muslim Street Food in Yuhuatai:
    • Yuhuatai is home to a thriving Muslim community, and the local street food reflects their culinary traditions. Don’t miss the opportunity to try lamb skewers, lamb soup, and sesame seed cakes from the stalls in this area.
  10. Cantonese Cuisine at South Beauty:
    • For those looking to diversify their palate, South Beauty offers Cantonese cuisine with a touch of modern flair. The restaurant is known for its elegant ambiance and a wide range of Cantonese specialties, including dim sum, roasted meats, and seafood.

Nanjing’s culinary scene is a reflection of its rich history and diverse cultural influences. From traditional Nanjing cuisine to international flavors, there’s something to delight every palate in this historic city. Be sure to explore these top restaurants and savor the unique flavors that Nanjing has to offer.

Tours For Visitors To Nanjing, China

Nanjing, China, is a city that boasts a rich historical and cultural heritage, making it a fascinating destination for travelers. From ancient imperial palaces and temples to modern landmarks, Nanjing offers a wide range of tours that allow visitors to explore its diverse attractions. Below, we’ll delve into some of the most popular tours and experiences for visitors to Nanjing, providing detailed information on each to help you plan your trip.

1. Historical Tours:

a. Nanjing City Wall Tour: – Nanjing’s ancient city wall is one of the best-preserved in China and offers a glimpse into the city’s historical significance. Guided tours along the wall take you through its gates, watchtowers, and ramparts, providing insight into its construction and role in defending the city. The Zhonghua Gate, in particular, is a must-visit.

b. Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Mausoleum Tour: – Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the founding father of modern China, is buried in Nanjing, and his mausoleum is a prominent attraction. Visitors can explore the mausoleum complex, which includes an impressive memorial hall, gardens, and a giant statue of Dr. Sun. The tour offers a glimpse into China’s revolutionary history.

c. Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall Tour: – This museum commemorates the victims of the Nanjing Massacre during World War II. A tour of the memorial hall provides a sobering and educational experience, with exhibits detailing the events of the massacre and its impact on the city.

2. Cultural Tours:

a. Confucius Temple Area Tour: – The Confucius Temple area, known as Fuzimiao, is a cultural and entertainment hub in Nanjing. Visitors can explore the Confucius Temple, stroll along the Qinhuai River, and visit lively markets. At night, the area comes alive with traditional performances and street food.

b. Nanjing Museum Tour: – Nanjing Museum is one of China’s most important museums, housing an extensive collection of art and historical artifacts. A tour of the museum takes you through the rich cultural history of the region, from ancient times to the modern era.

c. Nanjing Brocade Museum Tour: – Nanjing is renowned for its silk and brocade production. A visit to the Nanjing Brocade Museum allows you to witness the intricate process of brocade weaving and learn about the city’s textile traditions.

3. Natural and Scenic Tours:

a. Purple Mountain Scenic Area Tour: – Purple Mountain is a lush green oasis in the heart of Nanjing, offering picturesque hiking trails, temples, and beautiful vistas. A tour of Purple Mountain can include visits to the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, Linggu Temple, and the scenic Xuanwu Lake.

b. Qinhuai River Cruise Tour: – A cruise along the Qinhuai River offers a unique perspective of Nanjing’s historic district. Illuminated at night, the riverbanks come alive with traditional architecture, lanterns, and lively activities.

4. Food and Culinary Tours:

a. Nanjing Food Tour: – Nanjing is known for its unique cuisine, including dishes like duck blood soup, salted duck, and pan-fried buns. Food tours allow you to savor these local flavors at street stalls, markets, and renowned restaurants.

b. Chinese Tea Culture Tour: – Explore the art of tea in Nanjing by visiting traditional teahouses and participating in tea ceremonies. Nanjing is famous for its Yuhua Tea, and a tea culture tour provides an opportunity to sample different varieties.

5. Night Tours:

a. Nanjing Night Lights Tour: – Nanjing’s skyline is beautifully illuminated at night. A night tour takes you to landmarks like the Yangtze River Bridge and Xuanwu Lake, providing breathtaking views and photo opportunities.

b. Nanjing Ghost Tour: – For those seeking a unique experience, Nanjing offers ghost-themed tours that delve into the city’s haunted history and supernatural legends. These tours are not for the faint of heart!

Nanjing’s diverse range of tours ensures that every visitor can find something that piques their interest, whether it’s delving into history, immersing oneself in culture, exploring nature, indulging in local cuisine, or simply enjoying the city’s vibrant nightlife. No matter your preferences, Nanjing offers an enriching and memorable travel experience.

Nanjing Accommodations Guide: Hotels, Guesthouses and Hostels

Nanjing, the historic and cultural capital of China’s Jiangsu Province, offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit every traveler’s needs and budget. Whether you’re looking for luxurious hotels, cozy guesthouses, or budget-friendly hostels, Nanjing has something for everyone. In this detailed accommodations guide, we’ll explore various options across different price ranges to help you plan your stay in this vibrant city.

Luxury Hotels:

  1. Jinling Hotel Nanjing:
    • Located in the heart of the city, Jinling Hotel is an iconic 5-star luxury hotel offering elegant rooms, top-notch amenities, and panoramic views of Xuanwu Lake. It’s renowned for its impeccable service and fine dining, making it a favorite choice for discerning travelers.
  2. Shangri-La Hotel Nanjing:
    • Overlooking the Yangtze River, Shangri-La Hotel Nanjing offers opulent rooms with modern comforts and stunning river views. The hotel boasts a variety of restaurants, a spa, and easy access to Nanjing’s attractions.
  3. InterContinental Nanjing:
    • Nestled in the vibrant district of Xinjiekou, InterContinental Nanjing provides a blend of contemporary luxury and traditional Chinese design. Guests can enjoy fine dining, a rooftop bar, and easy access to shopping and cultural sites.
  4. The Grand Mansion, a Luxury Collection Hotel:
    • This luxury hotel combines Chinese heritage with modern luxury. The Grand Mansion offers beautifully appointed rooms, a spa, and multiple dining options, including a Michelin-starred restaurant.

Mid-Range Hotels:

  1. Novotel Nanjing Central:
    • Novotel Nanjing Central offers comfortable rooms in a convenient location near Xinjiekou’s shopping and dining area. It’s a great choice for business and leisure travelers seeking comfort without breaking the bank.
  2. Fraser Suites Nanjing:
    • Ideal for extended stays, Fraser Suites provides spacious serviced apartments with kitchen facilities. It’s suitable for families and travelers looking for a home-away-from-home experience.
  3. Holiday Inn Nanjing Aqua City:
    • Situated near the bustling Aqua City shopping mall, this Holiday Inn offers comfortable rooms and easy access to entertainment and dining options. The hotel also features a rooftop pool and bar.

Budget-Friendly Hotels and Guesthouses:

  1. Mingfa Pearl Spring Hotel:
    • Mingfa Pearl Spring Hotel offers clean and affordable rooms in the Qinhuai district. It’s a budget-friendly option with good transportation links to major attractions.
  2. Jinjiang Inn Nanjing Train Station:
    • Located near Nanjing Railway Station, this budget hotel provides basic amenities and easy access to transportation. It’s suitable for travelers on a tight budget.

Hostels and Guesthouses:

  1. Nanjing Fuzimiao International Youth Hostel:
    • If you’re a budget-conscious traveler looking for a social atmosphere, this youth hostel in the heart of Fuzimiao is a great choice. It offers dormitory-style and private rooms.
  2. Nanjing Time Youth Hostel:
    • Located near Xinjiekou, this cozy hostel offers a welcoming atmosphere, comfortable dorms, and private rooms. It’s a popular option for backpackers and solo travelers.
  3. Qinhuai International Youth Hostel:
    • Situated along the scenic Qinhuai River, this youth hostel provides a unique setting with both dormitory and private rooms. The view from the terrace is a highlight.

When booking your accommodation in Nanjing, consider factors such as location, budget, and the type of experience you’re seeking. Whether you prefer luxury, mid-range, or budget options, Nanjing’s diverse range of hotels, guesthouses, and hostels ensures that you’ll find a comfortable place to stay while exploring the city’s rich history and culture.

Nanjing 3-4 Days Travel Itinerary

Nanjing is a city brimming with historical, cultural, and natural attractions. A 3-4 day travel itinerary allows you to explore the city’s rich heritage, scenic landscapes, and vibrant culinary scene. Here’s a detailed itinerary to help you make the most of your visit to Nanjing:

Day 1: Arrival and City Exploration


  • Arrive in Nanjing and check into your chosen accommodation, whether it’s a luxury hotel, mid-range option, or a cozy hostel.


  • Start your exploration at the Qinhuai River Scenic Area, a historic district along the banks of the Qinhuai River. Stroll along the lively streets lined with traditional shops and try local street food.
  • Visit the Confucius Temple (Fuzimiao), an iconic landmark, and explore the temple complex, which includes the Confucius Temple itself and various traditional markets.


  • Enjoy a Qinhuai River Cruise to see the city illuminated at night. The reflections on the water create a magical atmosphere.
  • Sample local flavors at one of the many restaurants or street food stalls in the area.

Day 2: Historical Nanjing


  • After breakfast, head to Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall to pay your respects and gain insights into a dark chapter of history. The museum offers a somber but important educational experience.
  • Walk to the nearby Presidential Palace, a vast complex showcasing the history of modern China. Explore the grand halls, gardens, and historical exhibitions.


  • Visit the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, the final resting place of the Ming Dynasty’s founder, Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang. Explore the Sacred Way, the tomb area, and the massive stone sculptures.
  • Explore Xuanwu Lake Park, a serene oasis in the city center. You can rent a paddleboat or simply relax by the lake.


  • Dine at a local restaurant or try one of the city’s specialty dishes, such as salted duck or duck blood soup, at a traditional eatery.

Day 3: Purple Mountain and Cultural Experiences


  • Head to Purple Mountain, a large scenic area known for its natural beauty and historical sites. Start with a visit to Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Mausoleum, where you can learn about the founding father of modern China and enjoy panoramic views.
  • Explore the Nanjing Botanical Garden, a serene place to appreciate nature and various plant species.


  • Continue your exploration of Purple Mountain by visiting the Linggu Temple, known for its giant Buddha statue and tranquil surroundings.
  • Explore Xiaoling Tomb of the Ming Dynasty, another impressive mausoleum with historical significance.


  • Return to the city center and enjoy a leisurely dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 4: Nanjing’s Modern Side


  • Spend your final morning in Nanjing visiting the Nanjing Museum, where you can delve into the city’s rich cultural heritage through its extensive collection of art and artifacts.
  • Explore the vibrant and bustling streets of Xinjiekou, Nanjing’s central shopping district. You can shop for souvenirs, fashion, and electronics, or simply take in the modern cityscape.


  • For a different perspective of Nanjing, take a walk across the iconic Yangtze River Bridge. This suspension bridge offers picturesque views of the city and the river.
  • Visit Laomendong, a historic area with narrow alleys, traditional architecture, and lively street vendors.


  • Wrap up your trip with a visit to one of the city’s fine-dining restaurants or enjoy a meal at your hotel. Reflect on your time in Nanjing and savor the memories you’ve made.

This 3-4 day itinerary provides a well-rounded experience of Nanjing, combining historical and cultural attractions with natural beauty and modern city life. Of course, you can adjust the itinerary based on your interests and the pace at which you prefer to explore the city. Nanjing’s rich history and vibrant present ensure that there’s always something exciting to discover.

Where To Visit After Your Trip To Nanjing?

After your enriching trip to Nanjing, China, you might be wondering where to visit next to continue your exploration of this fascinating country. China is vast and diverse, offering a plethora of destinations that cater to different interests and preferences. Here are some compelling options to consider for your post-Nanjing travels:

1. Shanghai (Approx. 1-2 hours by high-speed train):

  • Just a short train ride away, Shanghai awaits with its iconic skyline, modern architecture, and vibrant nightlife. Explore the Bund, visit historic neighborhoods like Old Town and the Former French Concession, and indulge in world-class shopping and dining. Don’t miss the Shanghai Museum, Yu Garden, and a stroll along Nanjing Road, one of the world’s busiest shopping streets.

2. Suzhou (Approx. 1-2 hours by train):

  • Known as the “Venice of the East,” Suzhou is famous for its classical Chinese gardens, ancient canals, and silk production. Visit the UNESCO-listed Humble Administrator’s Garden, Lingering Garden, and Tiger Hill. Explore the historic streets of Pingjiang Road and enjoy a boat ride on the Grand Canal.

3. Hangzhou (Approx. 2-3 hours by high-speed train):

  • Hangzhou is renowned for the picturesque West Lake, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the lake’s scenic surroundings, visit temples, and enjoy boat rides. Hangzhou is also famous for its tea, so a visit to a tea plantation and a traditional tea ceremony are a must.

4. Beijing (Approx. 4-5 hours by high-speed train or 1.5 hours by flight):

  • China’s capital is steeped in history and culture. Explore iconic landmarks like the Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, and the Great Wall of China. Immerse yourself in the city’s rich heritage by visiting historic hutongs (narrow alleys), sampling Peking duck, and experiencing traditional Chinese opera.

5. Xi’an (Approx. 4-5 hours by high-speed train or 2 hours by flight):

  • Xi’an is famous for the Terracotta Army, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Marvel at the thousands of life-sized terracotta soldiers and horses buried with China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang. Explore the ancient city walls, visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, and savor local specialties like Xi’an’s renowned hand-pulled noodles.

6. Guilin and Yangshuo (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • If you’re seeking natural beauty, Guilin and Yangshuo in southern China are renowned for their stunning karst landscapes. Take a Li River cruise to admire the dramatic limestone peaks, explore the countryside on a bicycle, and visit picturesque villages.

7. Chengdu (Approx. 3-4 hours by flight):

  • Chengdu is the gateway to Sichuan Province, known for its spicy cuisine, Sichuan opera, and the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base. Taste authentic Sichuan hotpot, visit ancient temples like Wuhou Shrine, and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of this southwestern city.

8. Lijiang and Shangri-La in Yunnan Province (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • Explore the UNESCO-listed ancient town of Lijiang with its cobbled streets and traditional architecture. Continue your journey to Shangri-La, located in the mystical Tibetan region of Yunnan. Discover Tibetan culture, visit monasteries, and explore the stunning landscapes of the Himalayas.

9. Guilin and Yangshuo (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • If you’re seeking natural beauty, Guilin and Yangshuo in southern China are renowned for their stunning karst landscapes. Take a Li River cruise to admire the dramatic limestone peaks, explore the countryside on a bicycle, and visit picturesque villages.

10. Hong Kong (Approx. 1.5-2 hours by high-speed train or 1.5 hours by flight): – Experience the dynamic blend of East and West in Hong Kong. Explore its bustling streets, visit Victoria Peak for panoramic views, enjoy world-class shopping and dining, and savor the city’s unique blend of cultures.

11. Zhangjiajie (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is known for its towering sandstone pillars and lush greenery. It served as inspiration for the landscapes in the movie “Avatar.” Explore the park’s stunning hiking trails, glass-bottom bridges, and take a cable car ride for breathtaking views.

12. Suzhou (Approx. 1-2 hours by train):

  • Known as the “Venice of the East,” Suzhou is famous for its classical Chinese gardens, ancient canals, and silk production. Visit the UNESCO-listed Humble Administrator’s Garden, Lingering Garden, and Tiger Hill. Explore the historic streets of Pingjiang Road and enjoy a boat ride on the Grand Canal.

13. Guilin and Yangshuo (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • If you’re seeking natural beauty, Guilin and Yangshuo in southern China are renowned for their stunning karst landscapes. Take a Li River cruise to admire the dramatic limestone peaks, explore the countryside on a bicycle, and visit picturesque villages.

14. Chengdu (Approx. 3-4 hours by flight):

  • Chengdu is the gateway to Sichuan Province, known for its spicy cuisine, Sichuan opera, and the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base. Taste authentic Sichuan hotpot, visit ancient temples like Wuhou Shrine, and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of this southwestern city.

15. Harbin (Approx. 4-5 hours by high-speed train or 2.5 hours by flight):

  • Harbin, located in the northeastern part of China, is famous for its spectacular ice and snow festival. Visit in winter to see intricate ice sculptures and take part in winter sports activities. Explore the Russian-influenced architecture and cuisine in this unique city.

16. Jiuzhaigou Valley (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • Jiuzhaigou Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its ethereal beauty, crystal-clear lakes, and colorful pools. Explore the pristine natural landscapes, enjoy scenic hikes, and experience the local Tibetan culture.

17. Dunhuang (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • Dunhuang, located on the ancient Silk Road, is famous for the Mogao Caves, a complex of Buddhist cave temples with exquisite murals and sculptures. Explore the Silk Road history, visit the Crescent Lake, and experience the unique desert landscapes of Gansu Province.

18. Guilin and Yangshuo (Approx. 2-3 hours by flight):

  • If you’re seeking natural beauty, Guilin and Yangshuo in southern China are renowned for their stunning karst landscapes. Take a Li River cruise to admire the dramatic limestone peaks, explore the countryside on a bicycle, and visit picturesque villages.

19. Chengdu (Approx. 3-4 hours by flight):

  • Chengdu is the gateway to Sichuan Province, known for its spicy cuisine, Sichuan opera, and the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base. Taste authentic Sichuan hotpot, visit ancient temples like Wuhou Shrine, and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of this southwestern city.

20. Lhasa, Tibet (Approx. 4-5 hours by flight):

  • For a truly unique and spiritually enriching experience, consider visiting Lhasa, the capital of Tibet. Explore ancient monasteries like the Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple, witness Tibetan Buddhist rituals, and immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscapes of the Tibetan Plateau.

China offers a diverse range of destinations, each with its own unique charm and attractions. Your choice of post-Nanjing travel destination can depend on your interests, whether you’re drawn to history, nature, cuisine, or a combination of these elements. No matter where you decide to go, you’ll continue to be enchanted by the rich cultural tapestry and natural beauty that China has to offer.

Nanjing Travel Guide: Final Thoughts

As we conclude this Nanjing travel guide, it’s essential to reflect on the city’s rich history, cultural heritage, and vibrant atmosphere. Nanjing, known as the “Southern Capital,” holds a special place in China’s historical and modern landscape. Its diverse range of attractions and experiences make it a compelling destination for travelers seeking a deep connection with China’s past and present.

Nanjing’s historical significance is evident throughout the city. From the ancient city wall, which stands as a testament to centuries of Chinese history, to the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, the final resting place of Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang, Nanjing’s historical sites offer a glimpse into China’s imperial past. Additionally, the Qinhuai River Scenic Area, with its traditional architecture and lively atmosphere, immerses visitors in the city’s rich cultural traditions.

The city’s modern side is equally captivating. Nanjing’s bustling shopping districts, such as Xinjiekou, provide a contrast to its historical sites, showcasing the city’s dynamic development. Luxurious hotels, fine dining restaurants, and a vibrant nightlife scene make Nanjing a city that effortlessly combines tradition and modernity.

Nanjing’s culinary scene is a highlight of any visit. From savory local specialties like salted duck and duck blood soup to international cuisines and street food, the city offers a diverse range of flavors to tantalize your taste buds. Exploring the markets, sampling street snacks, and dining at traditional teahouses are culinary experiences not to be missed.

The city’s natural beauty is another remarkable aspect of Nanjing. The serene Xuanwu Lake and the lush landscapes of Purple Mountain offer opportunities for relaxation and exploration. The juxtaposition of urban development and natural wonders makes Nanjing a well-rounded destination for all types of travelers.

Nanjing’s accessibility is also a significant advantage for visitors. The city is well-connected by high-speed rail, making it easy to explore other parts of China before or after your visit. Shanghai, Suzhou, Hangzhou, Beijing, and many other destinations are within a few hours’ travel from Nanjing, providing endless opportunities for further exploration.

In conclusion, Nanjing is a city that seamlessly weaves together history, culture, and modernity. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a food lover, a nature seeker, or a traveler with varied interests, Nanjing has something to offer. As you explore its ancient streets, indulge in its cuisine, and immerse yourself in its culture, you’ll undoubtedly leave with a deep appreciation for the city’s unique character and its place in China’s captivating story.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *