When you come to China, an old nation with more than 5,000 years history, you must be interested in the culture and history of China. Culture and history give you a deeper understanding to a nation, especially in this old nation. We have selected the top 10 places which are suitable for culture and history photography in China. Ancient towns and cities, antique buildings and temples, folk customs and ethnic minorities, all are waiting for you to unveil the mysterious China through your camera.
As the capital of China, Beijing is the culture and political center of China. Majestic imperial palaces and temples are telling the story of the past Dynasties. The giant Great Wall, which was used to protect Chinese people as a fortification, shows you the wisdom and of ancient Chinese people. Anyone who facing the Great Wall will probably just surrender themselves to the grandeur of it. Hutong may be the only place where you can see the old Beijing. These residential units are still occupying by many local people, and it’s a great place to get to know about the folk living of Beijing people.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 6 Days Leisure Beijing Photography Tour
Called as the birthplace of Chinese civilization, Xian was once the capital city of 13 dynasties. The world-famous Terracotta Army, which was built by the first emperor of China – Qin Shi Huang – to protect his afterlife, is also in Xian. The Terracotta Army not only shows the ancient funerary art as well as the carving art at that time. Ancient City Wall is also good place to shoot. It’s the most complete preserved ancient city wall in China at present.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 3 Days Historical Xian Photography Tour
Holy Land: Tibet
In China, no place is so pious to Buddhism like Tibet. Azure sky, vast grassland, crystal clear lake, sacred snow mountain, devout people, anything you can name about Tibet will become a unique picture under your camera. Potala Palace in Lhasa city is the perfect combination of politics and Buddhism. It also presents the highest level of Tibetan Architure. The sacred Namtso Lake is the dreamland for many photographers. Everything is just so pure in here. Besides that, there are also holy snow mountains and extensive grassland in Tibet which are great for photography.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 5 Days Photography Short Break Tour in Tibet
Ancient Silk Road: Hexi Corridor
Hexi Corridor is the main part of Silk Road in China, and it includes three most impressive destinations: Zhangye, Jiayuguan and Dunhuang. Along this corridor, Zhangye Danxia Landform is the most beautiful one of its kind in China with vibrant colors. Jianshui Fort and Jianshui Great Wall are amazing historical site for photography. While the Mogao Grottoes and Sing Sand Dunes in Dunhuang just show the brilliant artic works of Chinese people and nature.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 8 Days Classic Gansu Photography Tour
Tulou & Xiapu
Tulou and Xiapu are located in Fujian Province. Tulou, built with the rammed earth construction skills, is the residence and fortress of Hakka people. With a history more than 600 years, Tulou is still taking an important place in the art of architectural world. Xiapu, though not a tourist attraction, is a photographer’s paradise for it’s the most beautiful mudflat in China.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 6 Days Fujian Tulou & Xiapu Photography Tour
Jiangnan area is famous for its water towns and exquisite gardens. The most famous water towns in Jiangnan area are Zhouhzuang Water Town, the No.1 water town in China, and Wuzhe, which is famous for its profound cultural background. In these water towns, you can shoot the traditional Chinese architectures and bridges. Traditional Chinese gardens are mainly located in Suzhou. Famous ones are Humble Administrator’s Garden and Lingering Garden. These gardens are quite different from the western gardens, so it’s a good chance to view Chinese delicate garden art.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 5 Days Suzhou & Hangzhou Photography Tour
There are many old towns in Yunnan, like Dali, Lijiang and Shangri-La. They are the dreamland offering you awesome photography sites to capture the diverse Yunnan. Except the beautiful natural scenery, like Erhai Lake, Tiger Leaping Gorge, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain and Haba Snow Mountain, there are also many cultural relics to shoot, like Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple. Colorful ethnic groups like Bai people in Dali, Naxi people in Lijiang and Tibetan people in Shangri-La also show the unique culture and folk customs.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 8 Days Classic Yunnan Photography Tour
Guizhou: Miao & Dong Minority Villages
Guizhou’s Miao & Dong Minority Villages are great places to experience China’s ethnic minority culture. Silt Houses, traditional costumes, ethnic festivals are all interesting things to experience in Guizhou. There are good places to escape from the hustle and bustle life. In here, the fascinating history and culture of the Miao & Dong Minority will provide so much funny staffs for your photograph.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 6 Days Guizhou Ethnic Minorities & Villages Photography Tour
Leshan & Mount Emei
Both being listed as the World Cultural Heritage, Leshan and Mount Emei is a sacred kingdom of Buddha. Leshan Giant Buddha is a 71 meters high statue sculptured from the bold cliff of a mountain, sitting on the riverside and facing the Leshan city with benevolent smile. Mount Emei has both stunning landscape and rich culture background, and it’s one of the most sacred Buddhist mountains in China. There are plenty of gorgeous temples on Mount Emei. You can record the unique features with your camera from different angels.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 5 Days Leshan Emeishan Photography Tour
The Ancient City of Pingyao
Pingyao Ancient City is one of the four well-preserved ancient cities in China. The city is a great example of the cities during Ming to Qing Dynasty. Almost everything of the city, like streets, stores and even residential buildings, still remain their past layouts and appearances. After seeing Pingyao, you can also make a side trip to Qiao’s Family Compound and Yungang Grottoes. The former one is one of the best preserved and most interesting merchant family compounds in Shanxi, and the latter one is located at Datong City, and is one the four big grottoes in China.
Highly Recommended Photography Tour: 4 Days Pingyao & Datong Photography Tour