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Pingyao is one of China's ancient town well known for its sound preservation of the urban landscape in China's Ming and Qing Dynasties. The City Wall itself, and the streets, buildings and shops are all preserved from the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Until today, the town looks much the same as when it was the county seat of the Ming and Qing dynasties. In 1997, when UNESCO decided to include this town on the World Heritage List, the comments read “ the Ancient City of Ping Yao is an outstanding example of a Han Chinese city of the Ming and Qing Dynasties".
Initially established during the Zhou Dynasty (between 827BC-782BC) and renamed as Pingyao in 424 during the Northern Wei Dynasty, the ancient city of Pingyao has a history of over 2,700 years. The ancient city wall of Pingyao enlarged in the 3rd year of Emperor Hong Wu of the Ming Dynasty remains original.
Tourist Highlights
The Ancient City Wall
Pingyao is famous for its well preserved ancient city wall. First built about 2,700 years ago, the ancient city wall was expanded in the Ming Dynasty. It was the most well-preserved wall among the ancient historical and cultural cities in China. It is square, 10 meters high, 5 meters wide, and 5.4 kilometers in circumference. There are 72 terraces with battlements. A bird's-eye view of the city, the wall looks like a turtle, hence the name 'Turtle City'.

Ming-Qing Street(South Street)
With a length of 440 meters, the street used to be the commercial center of Pingyao ancient city. The traditional and orderly-located shops of the Ming and Qing Dynasties are still well preserved. The cross-street Town House, is the highest building of the city (18.5 meters high). On its top, you can take a whole view of the Ming–Qing Street. Walking along the street, tourists can get the first-hand experience of ancient China.

Rishengchang (Sunrise Prosperity)
As the earliest bank in China, Ri Sheng Chang was established in the early Qing Dynasty. It was China's forerunner for organizing Chinese early finance system, handling remittance, money exchange, deposit, loan and other financial business. There were 35 branches in China's big and medium-sized cities. Its business covered Europe, America and Southeast Asia.
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