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Luoyang Facts: The Top 10 Things Tourists Should Know

luoyangQiyun Pagoda in Luoyang

Luoyang is probably someplace you've never heard of unless you are a Chinese history buff. It is between Xi'an and Beijing. It was one of the "Four Ancient Capitals" in the past and has been the capital of 13 ancient empires and kingdoms.

Now bullet trains make Luoyang more convenient to visit. Here are 10 interesting facts about its past and present so that you're well informed if you're thinking about a trip to Luoyang.

  • Chinese: 洛阳 Luòyáng /lor-yung/ 'Luo (River's) sunny (side)'

1. Luoyang is a hub of Chinese history and culture.

Luoyang was a major capital of various dynasties over a two thousand year period from the Eastern Zhou (1045–770 BC) to the Later Tang (923–937).

It was said to be the perhaps-mythical Xia Dynasty capital, so it might have been China's first capital city area. Along with the area around Beijing, Luoyang is part of the heartland of ancient Chinese civilization.

  • 2070 BC: It is said that the Xia empire established their capital in Luoyang.
  • 510 BC: The Eastern Zhou Dynasty established their capital.
  • 25 AD: The city became the capital of the Eastern Han Empire.
  • 493: The Northern Wei Dynasty established it as their capital city. They started to build the Longmen Grottoes.

2. Luoyang functioned as an imperial refuge capital.

luoyangLuoyang is one of China's historical gateways.

During the first 1,500 years of imperial history, whether by invasion or rebellion, several imperial dynasties lost their capital city and were forced to relocate in Luoyang.

For example, it was a capital of the Eastern Zhou Empire after the dynastic clan lost much control of the empire and of their earlier capital city. The Han Dynasty moved to Luoyang after internal strife and attacks of foreign armies.

3. Luoyang has significant ancient landmarks to see.

shaolin templeShaolin Temple is famous among moviegoers.

Three thousand years of civilization left many significant ancient landmarks that make a visit memorable.

The Longmen Grottoes are massive in scale and contain about 2,100 grottoes and niches and over 100,000 religious and historical images and statues. It is an official World Heritage Site.

The Shaolin Temple that has been portrayed on TV and in movies is about 45 kilometers (1.5 hours drive) away.The temple is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site and noted for martial arts/acrobatics performances and school for Kung Fu

More Top Attractions in Luoyang.

4. Luoyang Museum is the best place to discover the local history.

luoyang museumThe tri-colored glazed Silk Road camel is one of the top exhibits, a testament to Luoyang being the start of the trade route in the Tang Dynasty (618–907).

Luoyang Museum is popular. It is the place to go to see the ceramics and artifacts from each era and learn the history. It has a Certificate of Excellence on TripAdvisor [2018].

5. Luoyang's most popular souvenir is Tang style tri-color glazed pottery.

For fine local-color souvenirs and gifts, we suggest the Tang-style tri-color glazed pottery (唐三彩瓶) made to imitate the refined ceramic craftsmanship and artwork of the antiques of the Tang era.

Finely crafted pieces are quite colorful. See Louyang's top shopping areas.

6. Economy: The main source of income is heavy industry.

luoyangNight view of Luoyang's downtown.

The city is the heavy industry center of northern central China. Industries such as steel, aluminum, and large machinery manufacture account for about 75 percent of the economic output. Because of this, annual income is fairly low at about 53,300 RMB (5,700 USD).

7. Luoyang population is 2 million.

Luoyang is a medium-sized city with a population of 2 million people and covers about 4,300 square kilometers (or 1,650 square miles).

8. The best time to visit Luoyang is April.

The city is known for hot and rainy summers and dry, cold winters. The best time to visit is April, both for the weather and Luoyang's Peony Fair that is held from April to May every year.

October is also pleasant though tourism is high. See more about Luoyang's climate and tourism by seasons and months.

9. Luoyang is a short train ride from Xi'an for day excursions.

China high-speed train High-speed train

By high speed train, Luoyang Longmen station is only about one and a half hours away from Xi'an, so you can see both imperial capitals during your time in China. We can arrange for private drivers at both cities to meet you and facilitate your travels in comfort. See our Xi'an and Luoyang by Bullet Train Day Trip details below. See Luoyang Transportation.

10. Luoyang has a convenient airport and bullet train stations.

Travel to Luoyang has improved recently. There is a domestic airport about 13 kilometers from the city center and a regular train station.

Convenient bullet trains: A new very fast G train line connects Luoyang Longmen Station with Beijing (3.5 hours, ~60 USD second class) and Xi'an (1.5 hours, ~28 USD). See Luoyang Transportation.

Planning Your Luoyang Tour

private tourChina Highlights private transport is friendly and convenient.

We can tailor your tour. We specialize in bespoke, custom tours tailored for your interests. Tell us what you wish to do while you're in China, and we'll respond within 24 hours.

Here are some popular tour ideas for Luoyang:

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