Pingyao is located in central Shanxi Province, China, on the east bank of the Fen River near the southwestern edge of the Taiyuan Basin. From the provincial capital, Taiyuan, it is about 100 km.
The area of the city of Pingyao is about 2.25 km². The city has a main road that connects to 4 main gates.
Residential houses in this city were built during the Ming and Qing Dynasties, which were about 600 years ago.
All the buildings in this city have distinctive architecture, visiting this city is like entering China in the past.
Pingyao is Surrounded by the Wall
The ancient city of Pingyao was originally built during the Western Zhou dynasty (1045–256 BC). This city holds a rich history of Chinese culture spanning 2,700 years.
The city is surrounded by high walls that are old. The sturdy high walls are the hallmark of the ancient city of Pingyao.
Besides being surrounded by high walls, this city also has 4 large gates. This large gate is used as the entrance and exit for local residents and tourists who come to the city.
These four big gates are located in 4 cardinal directions: West, East, North, and South. The layout of the city looked like that of a large empire, with settlements surrounded by high walls.
Pingyao Old Town Architecture
The typical architecture of the ancient Chinese buildings in this city is still well-preserved. The terraced roofs and curved sides, and red lanterns in every house.
City layouts from the Ming and Qing dynasties have also been preserved. There are more than 300 sites in or near the city containing ancient ruins.
The city has more than a hundred streets and lanes, with nearly 4,000 shops and 17th–19th-century residences. Most of the streets and storefronts still retain their historical appearance.
Society and Culture
Pingyao Ancient City and its surroundings are governed as a “Gutao” town, with the center of Pingyao County. Gutao directly oversees 10 wards, including Dongcheng, Xicheng, Nancheng, Beicheng, and others.
Recorded in 2009, Pingyao has a population of 48,531 people living in 16,634 households. In this city, there are still many residents who work as farmers.
Apart from taking advantage of the fertility of their soil, some communities also focus on the service sector, especially the tourism sector.
Some communities also work by caring for livestock. That’s why this area is also famous for its beef production.
Climate in Pingyao
The climate in the Pingyao region is moderate. Temperatures will be cold in winter, often with northwestern winds, little snow, and heavy fog.
In spring, temperatures vary widely between day and night, with little rain and little wind.
Whereas in summer, it is often hot, humid, and rainy. Autumn days have temperatures dropping with little rain and are cool and sunny with an abundance of sunshine.
Each season will accentuate the beauty of the city. Because of the city’s beauty and architecture, in 1997, the ancient city of Pingyao was designated by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage site.