With the school term kicking off again and trips to far-flung locations off the cards, now is a good time to explore the sights closer to home. Strong high-speed rail links make Luoyang an easy weekend trip from Beijing, and its historical importance makes it the perfect place to inspire older children to hit the books. Once a dynastic citadel, the prosperous capital of 13 dynasties and the eastern capital of the Tang dynasty, tragically little now remains of Luoyang’s glory days— although the sights it does have are well worth the trip. Just don’t head here expecting to relax. It’s a place to pound out the sights, pack in some learning, have an evening wander and fall exhausted and educated into your train seat at the end of it all.