Explore the Origins of Chinese Civilization
4 Days Datong and Pingyao Tour from Beijing
Located between Beijing and Xi'an, Datong and Pingyao are important stops if you would like to discover one of the cradles of Chinese civilization. Be amazed by the Hanging Temple. Discover the Yungang Grottoes. Immerse in the Chinese culture in Pingyao Ancient Town. This 4 days Datong and Pingyao Tour will take you back to the origin of the Central Plain culture.
- Step into the Hanging Temple and enjoy the thrilling but safe experience.
- Visit one of the biggest Buddhist grottoes in China, the Yungang Grottoes.
- Ramble in Pingyao Ancient City. Measure the history with your eyes, and see the daylight fade until the lanterns light up.
- Learn to make the most famous Chinese noodles.
We did a day tour to Datong from Beijing to see the Hanging temple & Grottoes. It was well worth the detour. If you want a personalised holiday in China at a reasonable price then, I strongly recommend China Highlights. We were treated all the way as VIP guests. Read more
Bevan, from Australia
Meet your guide at the exit of Datong Nan train station. A comfortable private car (non-smoking) and experienced driver will be ready for your Datong and Pingyao trip.
Next, You will explore Huayan Temple. It has the world's second largest wooden pagoda. Under the pagoda, there is an underground Thousand Buddha Palace, which is made of pure copper.
Then we will have lunch at a local restaurant. Your tour guide will assist you with ordering the dishes, so you can taste the most authentic local food.
After lunch, you will visit one of the biggest Buddhist grottoes in China - the Yungang Grottoes. We will arrange a battery cart at the attraction, so you can avoid the long walk between the grottoes and have more time to see the statues.
Transfer to your hotel after the tour and prepare for the next day's adventures.
Yunzhong Traditional Courtyard
After breakfast in your hotel, we will drive for 1½ hours to the Hanging Temple.
True to its name, the Hanging Temple is hanging on a cliff. Ancient people built this temple to store food and water for people who passed by, and accepted three major Chinese religions so that travelers following those religions could stay there.
Your guide will climb up to the temple with you and give the explanation including why people built this temple so high.
Then you will have lunch in a local restaurant. After the lunch, you will head to Yingxian Wooden Pagoda.
As a UNESCO site, Yingxian Wooden Pagoda is the oldest and tallest surviving wooden structure in China.
After visiting the pagoda, you will have a private transfer (about 4 hours) to Pingyao and check in at your hotel in Pingyao Ancient City. You will have the same guide and the same driver here.
Wake up in your traditional Chinese-style room. It's better to start your day at Pingyao Ancient City Wall. If you are a photographer, capturing a sunrise at Pingyao Ancient City Wall is a great chance to grasp the charm of the ancient area.
The core history of Pingyao Ancient City is the history of the Chinese banking system. The Rishengchang Former Bank was the first draft bank in China.
There, you will learn how the banking system was created and how it developed until the first bank was defunct.
Lunch will be arranged in a local restaurant where you will have a chance to learn making the traditional noodles.
After lunch, you will visit the The Armed Escort Company Museum. It was built to protect the tangible currency. The Museum shows how this special business was formed and how it was run, and also introduces the top 10 escort companies and top 10 guards - they were all kung fu masters.
Walk along Mingqing Street, which is the most prosperous area in the ancient city. The lanterns are all on at night and it is very lively there in the evening.
Your personal guide will be with you all the time when touring the ancient city. Your guide will be happy to show you any other building that you are interested and will also show you the place for a panorama of the city.
After breakfast in your hotel, your guide will be waiting for you in the lobby at the appointed time. You will explore the rich culture outside the ancient city wall. After driving for 10 minutes, you will visit the Shuanglin Temple first.
The Shuanglin Temple is considered to be the "unrestored glory" of Pingyao, and it has over 2,000 colored mud sculptures preserved under its humble-looking roofs. Every sculpture has its own face and expression, and each of them is a rare treasure.
Then you will drive in a southerly direction for 1 hour to the Wang Family Compound.
Lunch will be arranged in a local restaurant on the way - your tour guide will assist you with reading the menu and ordering the dishes, and you will taste the most authentic local food.
The Wang Family Compound is about 1½ hours from the ancient city. It is the former residence of the Wang family - a reputable official's family that lived there for over 300 years.
Its total area is about 25 hectares (62 acres), with 123 courtyards and 1,118 rooms. You will be impressed by the structure of the compound, which embody the different statuses of men and women, masters and servants.
1. About the Transportation
The bullet train from Beijing to Datong and the bullet train from Pingyao to Beijing are included.
2. Customizing your Datong and Pingyao Tour - According to Your Needs
Our itinerary of this Datong and Pingyao tour from Beijing is flexible. If you would like to include more places or skip Datong or Pingyao, we are happy to customize your trip accordingly.
3. About the Accommodation
Datong and Pingyao are not as developed as Beijing. The hotels might not be as high-class as those in the big cities, but we select the best available, based on cleanliness, central location, and local features.
Based on 2 persons & 4-star hotel