Streets of Pingyao
Walking around Pingyao is a wonderful way to spend a couple of hours. The network of 84 streets and lanes are likened to the asymmetrical pattern on a turtle’s shell. The turtle symbolises longevity and tranquillity in China, and Pingyao is often called ‘turtle city’.
The main street, Nan Dajie (also South Street or Ming-Qing Street), is one of the central passageways of the town, and has been so for the past 450 years. Once home to wealthy families and their businesses, today it is filled with banks, shops, food stalls, restaurants and museums.
It is also recommended to stay within the walled city in one of the old houses that have been turned into small hotels.
Top: A street in Pingyao - full of bustle and colour Left, middle: An impressive display of weapons at the Museum of Armed Escorts Left: Deep in the vault of the Xietongqing Draft Bank Right, left to right: A large sandal designating a shoe shop; local street food; scooters lined up in a back street All images: © Fiona Richards