"Xi-an" Xi'an by nattybabe

Xi'an Travel Guide: 1,091 reviews and 2,978 photos

So much to see and do!!

Xi-an is a wonderful city that is full of the hustle and bustle of a big city but with a smaller town feel than Beijing. You will have all the modern conveniences to enjoy as well as an amazing history to discover that will leave you wanting to stay for more than the usual 2 days travellers dedicate.

You'll find the food here fantastic, the atmosphere incredible and the layout of the city very easy to negotiate.

Sites of interest include the Terracotta Warriors, the City Walls, the Bell and Drum Towers, the Muslim Quarter, the Great Mosque and much more.

History

As one of the 6 ancient capitals in China, Xi-an served as the seat of 12 imperial dynasties over the last 2000 years. It was the starting point for the great trade caravans of the Silk Road to Central Asia and Europe. It was also the largest city in the world during the Tang Dynasty (618-907AD).

Abandoned as the capital after the fall of the Tang, it began a long peiord of decline that lasted until Ming Dynasty times (1368-1644AD) when the city walls were rebuilt.

In 1936 the Chinese Nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek was kidnapped here, he was held captive until he agreed to join the Communists in a united front against the Japanese.

Rapid industrialisation of the city began in the 1950s with manufacturing of cotton textiles, electrical equipment, machinery and fertilizers.

The population has more than doubled in the last 10 years!

In 1974, in the course of digging a well not far from Xi-an, some farmers made an astonishing discovery, the buried terracotta warriors of Emperor Qin Shi Huangdi (259-210BC), the first emperor who unified China's divided territories into one nation and standardised its written language.

  • Last visit to Xi'an: May 2007
  • Intro Written Jun 6, 2007
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Reviews (11)

Comments (2)

  • trvlrtom's Profile Photo
    Jan 1, 2008 at 9:24 PM

    I loved the Muslim quarter! Have fun with your upcoming trips...

  • Helga67's Profile Photo
    Jun 21, 2007 at 7:50 AM

    Great tips. The moslim quarter looks like a great place to spend some time, and of course the TC warriors.

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