On your trip to Pingyao, in China, you can visit the historic wall and stroll through the streets of the medieval city, inside the aforementioned fortification, and specifically along Ming-Qing Street.
But you will also have the opportunity to make some other visits in the surroundings. Specifically, you have the opportunity to visit two Buddhist temples that, together with the medieval wall, form what are called the Three Treasures of Pingyao.
Buddhist temples in Pingyao:
The Shuanglin Temple is located in the village of Qiaotou, just six kilometers from Pingyao, and originally dates back to the year 500.
This Buddhist tempo is part of the cultural heritage that incorporates the declaration of World Heritage by UNESCO for Pingyao, and has acquired fame as a "museum of painted sculptures", as it brings together more than two thousand sculptures.
The other prominent Buddhist temple to visit in and around Pingyao is the Zhenguo Temple, which is located 12 kilometers northeast of Pingyao. The temple occupies an area of 11,000 square meters and was built in 963.
The Zhenguo Temple was remodeled in 1816, during the Quing Dynasty.
In its front part, next to the great hall of the entrance to the temple, you will see a bell tower and a drum tower to the other. On its back, there are two mausoleums, and it is also famous for its colored sculptures.
A third visit near Pingyao is the House of the Xiao Family, which is located 40 kilometers north of the medieval city. It is famous for being a beautiful example of typical Chinese architecture, with decorative elements of great interest, and for the sculptures that can be seen during the visit.
Beijing: Buy decorative handicraft products in Jade, when you arrive in China quickly you realize the very special status of jade in that country. This is reflected in the wide range of decorative products jade crafts that you will find in stores and warehouses in all cities.
The jade is regarded in China for over 5,000 years as the king of gemstones. Historically, owning and wearing jade was a way of showing high social status.
The Chinese Jade is a silicate composed of jadeite and nephrite, which sometimes has a greenish color due to chromium impurities, and which in ancient times was highly valued for its great hardness and resistance, so it was widely used to make weapons.
A good example of the importance of jade in Chinese culture is the great value and status that have historically acquired various pieces, such as the Jade Buddha Buddhist temple in Shanghai, and in the same city, the Exquisita Rock Jade’s Garden Yuyuan in Shanghai.
Within China, Shanghai is one of the cities where the handmade production of jade products is more widespread. In its stores and stores you will find different types of decorative and ornamental products, especially vases, animal figures, such as birds, dragons and flowers, and pieces of jewelry.
Brilliance and hardness are two characteristics that should be appreciated when buying handmade products in jade. If you decide to travel to China on an organized trip, surely one of the “mandatory” visits you will find is that of a large store with jade products, where they will show you how jade crafts are worked.
I have had the opportunity to visit it in Beijing, and in this type of large tourist shops you will also have the opportunity to buy some piece of jade if you wish.