A little over an hour’s ride on the high speed train, Nanjing is close enough for a weekend get away. A considerably smaller city (population 8 million), its northeastern edge is home to the scenic Zijin Shan (Purple Mountain). Purple only in name, the lush green hillside and serene lake was a welcomed escape for the weekend.
Nanjing or “south capital city” was once just that – the southern dynasty’s capital as far back as the 3rd century. The city is older than that, though, with its origins dating back as far as the 5th century BC.
It wasn’t until the Ming dynasty that the city’s wall was built. Construction started in 1366 and it took 28 years to build the 19-mile long wall. Each brick bears the name of its creator as a quality assurance measure.
Today, the wall provides a wonderful place to stroll on a nice day and enjoy the views.
Having roots in the Confucian revivalism of 960-1279, the city boasts the largest statue of Confucius and his likeness can be spotted throughout the city.