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Luoyang: Resting place of tranquility

By Hilton Yip (China Daily)

10:29, March 04, 2013

The main reason to visit Luoyang is Longmen Grottoes, one of the four famous Buddhist grottoes in China. (China Daily/Hilton Yip)

Luoyang served as the capital of 13 Chinese dynasties and kingdoms. Hilton Yip lists some of the attractions of the ancient city.

When you ask an expatriate to name the four ancient great capitals of China, most will list them in this order: Beijing, Xi'an, Nanjing and lastly, Luoyang in Henan province. Luoyang may lack the modernization and fame of the other capitals, but it boasts several famous sights, including Longmen Grottoes, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It also has an impressive museum, housed in a new building, and the first Buddhist temple in China, the approximately 1,950-year-old White Horse Temple.

With a history dating back to the 12th century BC, Luoyang served as the capital of 13 dynasties and kingdoms, including the Eastern Han Dynasty (AD 25-220) and the Kingdom of Wei, during the famed Three Kingdoms (AD 220-280) period.

During the Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907), it was the Eastern Capital, second only to the imperial capital Xi'an.

The first place to grasp Luoyang's 3,000 years plus heritage is at Luoyang Museum.

Housed in a massive reddish-brown building perched grandly atop a gray foundation overlooking a park, the museum dominates its landscape.

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