Northern Part



The Northern Part of my journey-Capitals, Capitals, Capitals
This part of my tour had many historical sights. Beijing, the capital of today, is of course a important place to visit. It's a rather "new" capital though, not established until the 13th century and there are several older capitals scattered around this area. 

Henan Province-Anyang, Luoyang, Kaifeng
North of Zhengzhou, in Henan Province, are the oldest findings of Chinese high culture. Here the Shang Dynasty established the very first Chinese capital, Anyang, in 1700 BC. One millennia later, during the following Zhou dynasty, the capital was moved to Luoyang. 

Still in Henan Province Luoyang lies west of Zhengzhou, just north of the Shaolin temple. Luoyang was later again a capital for several times, of which the latest time was in the 10th century, in between the Tang and Song Dynasty. 

During the 10th century there was even a third capital in this close area, Kaifeng, east of Zhengzhou. Kaifeng had its glorious days until the power was moved to Beijing.

Shaanxi Province-The Emperor in Xian
In Xian, in the neighboring province Shaanxi, is maybe the most well known historical findings of China, the magnificent Terracotta Army. Here in Xian the King of Qin established the first capital of the united China in the year 221 BC. After defeating all surrounding ancient states the King of Qin became the first Emperor of China. 

Actually, the word Qin, that former was transcribed as Chin, is the word that the westerners derived the name China from. As you know the Chinese don't call themselves Chinese but the Middle Kingdom People, Zhong Guo Ren. 

Shanxi Province-Datong
On the way from Beijing to Pingyao there is even a sixth capital of this area, Datong in Shanxi Province. Just for a short while, but anyway, it was the capital in around the 5th century. 

Continuing down south you find another old center of power in Pingyao. Pingyao was never a capital though, but during the middleage Ming Dynasty it became an important economical center with a bank system that had influence far down into Sichuan Province.