With travel still somewhat restricted, we thought we’d organize a summer series showcasing a number of destinations in a place you can visit (relatively*) hassle-free – our beautiful neighbor to the north: Jiangsu Province.
*Please check the latest travel restrictions whenever you travel
We’ll get to the classics of Nanjing and Suzhou a bit later, as well as a host of lesser-known, arguably even more desirable destinations.
But there was only one place where we were going to start: Changzhou.
Located in southern Jiangsu Province (we’re only talking 50 minutes by high-speed train), Changzhou has a history that dates back more than 3,000 years.
It is an ancient city, famous for its deep cultural heritage, as rich as any scenic spot and historical relics.
And that’s fine – and we’ll cover the highlights a bit later. However, we decided to start with Changzhou for a different reason.
We chose to start with Changzhou because that’s where…
China Dinosaur Park
We are well aware of the situation: the children have been stuck inside, bouncing off the walls for three months (or more); Disney’s fun parties still aren’t open, and there’s nothing happy about Happy Valley right now.
So how do you get that long-awaited and well-deserved theme park fix?
What can we say… nature finds a way.
And that way is to hop on a high-speed train and take the 50-minute, 200-million-year trip to China Dinosaur Park in Changzhou. Also known as Jurassic Park of the East. Also known (by us, anyway) as Disney With Dinosaurs.
China Dinosaur Park has everything you could want from a land before time and more: it is home to seven themed areas, more than 50 rides and offers more than a dozen shows a day.
Venture through the Jurassic period, explore Dinosaur Hill, watch a multi-dimensional movie, meet the dinosaurs of the sea.
Discover the nearly complete fossil skeleton of Sinosauropteryx in the 20,000 square meter, ten-room museum, as well as large fossils such as Brachiosaurus and Hadrosaurus.
Get your adrenaline pumping with ziptreking, bungee jumping, summer skiing, rock climbing, water biking and more. Then relax in the thermal pools.
Shopping, restaurants, entertainment, a hotel – China Dinosaur Park has it all.
It’s King Kong fighting a T-Rex…
There are lakeside walks populated by brontosaurs (or brachiosaurs…or diplodocus…where’s Sam Neill/Dr Alan Grant when you need him?!)
It even houses fourth dimension roller coaster who goes by the name of bad-ass Dinocond. A fourth dimensional roller coaster, for those not in the know, is a roller coaster in which the riders spin independently of the orientation of the track, around a perpendicular horizontal axis.
Scarier than coming face to face with a velociraptor, a ride on the old Dinoconda.
So here it is: China Dinosaur Park. Check it out.
But that’s not all Changzhou has to offer. Let’s take a look at some of this proposed cultural heritage…
Ruins of Chunqiu Yancheng
Chunqiu Yancheng Ruins is the oldest and most complete preserved ancient city and moat from the Western Zhou Dynasty (we are talking about 3,000 years old) in the Spring and Autumn period in China.
Changzhou’s Tianning Temple is one of China’s premier Buddhist temples, with a history dating back over 1,300 years. It is also home to Tianning Pagoda, not only the tallest of the 4,000 pagodas in China, but the tallest in the entire world.
Oriental Salt Lake Resort
The Oriental Salt Lake Resort embodies the essence of Chinese Taoist culture. Surrounded by green mountains and clear waters, it continues the architectural style of the Wei and Jin dynasties, with simple and quiet ancient streets and alleys. The ideal holiday destination for all ages.
Qingguo Lane is one of Changzhou’s famous ancient streets and is near the Nanshi River, the oldest section of the World Heritage-listed Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal.
With the architecture of Ming Dynasty, Qing Dynasty and the Republic of China, it is both a “living fossil” and also a place of local cultural background, famous for its scholars and celebrities.
Ladies and gentlemen, we present to you Changzhou, a city whose history dates back 3,000 years, or 245 million years, depending on how you look at it.
And all just 50 minutes away by high-speed train.
Want more travel tips?
To learn more about all kinds of exciting destinations, from ancient cities to wetland wilderness, follow the Jiangsu Tourism Bureau on WeChat by scanning the QR code below: