Luoyang Old Town (Experience the Authentic Lifestyle of the Locals)
Luoyang had been made a capital city by 105 emperors since the Xia Dynasty (2070–1600 BC). Luoyang Old Town was once a political, cultural, and economic center.
Nowadays, Luoyang Old Town is a lively place with residential areas, snack streets, small shops, and old buildings. You can see many ancient buildings and experience the lifestyle of the locals there.
What can you do in Luoyang Old Town? Read on to find out the answer.
- Chinese: 洛阳老城区 Luòyáng Lǎochéngqū / lor-yang laow-chnng-chyoo/ Luoyang Old Town
- Popular activities: visit an ancient gate, eat local food, experience local life
- Must-sees: Lijing Gate, old streets with local food plus arts and craft shops
- Suited to: anyone
- Time needed: 1–2 hours
- Ancient ruins, remains, and architecture can be seen.
- A shopping and dining area.
- A 1,400-year-old city gate.
What You Can Do in Luoyang Old Town
Visit the Magnificent 1,400-Year-Old Lijing Gate
Lijing Gate was originally built in the Sui Dynasty (581–618 AD). It used to be the office space for imperial court officials and a place of worship. Lijing Gate witnessed the rise and fall of the ancient Luoyang city.
Due to various wars and other reasons throughout history, Lijing Gate declined in its appearance. After many restorations, it now looks much better.
Lijing Gate is the symbol of the ancient city of Luoyang and you can appreciate its splendor at first sight.
As you step toward the gate and go to the top of it, you can see 13 gold pillars, representing the fact that Luoyang was the capital of 13 dynasties.
There is a corridor displaying deities, sculptures of emperors, and archives. You can also get a beautiful view of the whole of Luoyang Old Town from there.
Lijing Gate is also a good place to take photographs. Stand in front of it to capture a spectacular picture of the whole gate.
Eat Local Food and Go Shopping
There are many streets in Luoyang Old Town. Some of them are shopping streets that sell a certain kind of goods or articles, such as silk scarves, calligraphy brushes, jewelry, and other tourist items.
Luoyang Old Town isn’t relatively wealthy, so this is where you can buy lots of goods at cheap prices.
Some of the streets are residential, with small shops and old apartments lining both sides. The streets are still generally old and narrow.
There are a lot of stalls selling food, and the small restaurants set tables on the streets for their customers. If you want to try local dishes, your guide will give you good recommendations.
You can find Muslim food there too. Many of Luoyang’s Muslims live there. Muslim restaurants are usually called Lanzhou lamian (hand-pulled noodles) restaurants. They make their own noodles, and the spicy flavors with lamb, chicken, or beef toppings are delicious.
The food is different from most Chinese food — it is less oily and fresher. It is also usually cheaper. The restaurants often serve handmade bread as well.
Stroll in the Old Streets and Experience the Authentic Local Lifestyle and Culture
Many store owners are artists. They make creations in their stores — you can go inside to watch them work and can communicate with them. They are willing to talk with you and you needn’t worry about the language barrier as your guide will help you.
If you want to make a pottery item or learn how to do paper cutting, your guide can arrange this for you.
You can enjoy watching the daily lifestyle of Luoyang’s citizens there. You can watch people as they pass by or are playing table games, such as mahjong. Some elderly men sit around and play chess. You can really experience the authentic lifestyle of Luoyang.
Colorful Nightlife in Luoyang Old Town
In the evening, Luoyang Old Town is one of the busiest areas to visit. The whole area is lit up and looks glittering. All the snack vendors are open and cater to customers.
Many local people spend their evenings there. If you enjoy crowds and want to experience the local nightlife, you should visit the area in the evening.
Ancient Luoyang City — a History of 3,050 Years
Luoyang is an ancient city with a long history, though its name has changed many times and even its location within Luoyang prefecture. It was one of the most prosperous cities in Chinese history.
It served as the capital in 13 dynasties.
The 13 Dynasties When Luoyang Was China’s Capital
|Xia (probably legendary)||Zhenxin 斟鄩 ‘Pour Xin [place name]’||1735–1540 BC|
|Shang||Xibo 西亳 ‘West Bo [capital of Yin]’||1600–1260 BC|
|Western Zhou||Luoyi 洛邑 ‘Luo [river] City’||1040–771 BC|
|Eastern Zhou||Wangcheng王城 ‘King City’||771–520 BC|
|Eastern Han||Luoyang 雒阳 ‘Luo [river] Sun’||25–190 AD|
|Three Kingdoms — Cao Wei||Luoyang 洛阳||220–265|
|Western Jin||Luoyang 洛阳||265–313|
|Northern and Southern Kingdoms — Northern Wei||Luoyang 洛阳||493–534|
|Sui||Dongdu 东都 ‘East Capital’||605–619|
|Tang (Wu Zetian’s Zhou Dynasty)||Shendu 神都 ‘Divine Capital’||690–705|
|Five Dynasties era — Later Liang||Xijing 西京 ‘West Capital’||909–913|
|Five Dynasties era — Later Tang||Dongdu 东都||923–937|
|Five Dynasties era — Later Jin||Xijing 西京||937–938|
Luoyang Old Town was built on the ruins of the Luoyang of the Sui and Tang dynasties in 1214, when it was the “western capital”, a capital for the last time in imperial times. It had been a political, economic, and cultural center throughout China’s history up to that time.
In ancient times, merchants continuously streamed in and out of the area and boosted the economy. It was once the start of the Silk Road.
The Best Times for a Tour
Any time of year is good for a visit. For a better trip experience, we advise you opt for spring or autumn, as it is not too hot or cold during these periods.
During the weekends or holidays, it will be very crowded. If you prefer to visit less crowded areas, we will take you to some quiet streets with fewer crowds where you can experience the local people’s lifestyle.
Travel Essentials for Planning a Tour
- Entrance: free, although there is an admission fee for Lijing Gate
- Location: Luoyang Old Town
- How to get there: It is about 7½ miles, which is 30 minutes’ drive, from Luoyang Longmen Railway Station and 4 miles from Luoyang Railway Station, which is 20 minutes’ drive.
The Museum of Imperial Carriages of the Emperor of the Zhou Dynasty: It displays ceremonial pits and artifacts of an Eastern Zhou emperor. It is about 2½ miles from Luoyang Old Town.
Travel to Luoyang Old Town with Us
If you want to fully experience the locals’ lifestyle in Luoyang and learn more about the ancient city, you can contact us and tell us your requirements. We will arrange an authentic tour for you.