The 12 BEST Things to do in Nanjing China

The 12 BEST Things to do in Nanjing China

Nanjing is not commonly on the list of places most tourists think of going, but it is truly worth your time. There are many things to do in Nanjing that you should not miss. This is a place where you get to meet friendly locals and an opportunity to look for unique experiences, which makes the visits even more rewarding. You can get to Nanjing easily from Shanghai. In this part of the region, you also get the chance to access more affordable hotels and restaurants than in any other part of China.

Nanjing used to be China’s capital and has a lot of significance in the modern and anxiety times of China’s history.  The Nanjing massacre is one of the most memorable and horrific events that occurred here with around 300,000 civilians and soldiers being massacred. The most popular place for travelers is the Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum, Ming tomb and Nanjing city wall which is the longest city wall in the world.

See Also: Hire an Interpreter in Nanjing

#1: See the Massacre Museum

If you are interested in history, the Massacre Museum is a wonderful opportunity to visit. This is the best place to learn more about the history of the city. You also can get insight regarding international relations and political tensions played within the country and beyond.

The Massacre Museum is part museum, part memorial, and partly a graveyard. One of the halls is an excavation site for skeletons. In here, you get historical context regarding the 2nd Sino Japanese war. Testimonies and photos are used to stress the memories of these historical events.

The other alternative apart from history is the Chinese opera and it is performed every day.

things to do in nanjing

#2: Explore Purple mountain

The purple mountain is one of the most scenic regions in Nanjing.  The pathways in the mountain are lined with animal statues made by stone.

The three main sites in here are Linggu temple, Sun Yat Sens Mausoleum, and Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum. When the weather is nice, exploring the outdoors is great and you would prefer to go for swimming.

#3: Visit the Usnisa Palace

This is one of the best alternatives in Nanjing to see a unique part of China. It is an underground palace and there is so much to see. There are intricate designs and colors inside so that you may find yourself a little lost.

The environment is landscaped and the place is never really too crowded because of the entrance fee requirement.

#4: See Xuanwu lake

This is one of the best Chinese parks that you should visit. The best time to visit here in the morning hours. It is a tranquil place and very popular among seniors who want to practice tai-chi.

To have a better lake view, the city wall is the best place to be on. You can get a better look especially when the day is clear.

#5: Go to Ming city wall

You do not need to see every part of the walls, but it makes sense to peruse a part of it. This wall was completed in 21 years and has been preserved very well. The Gate of China or Zhongyang Gate is one of the main highlights here.

nanjing ming city wall

#6: Confucius temple/ Fuzimiao

Even though there is a temple in its name, religion is not the main concern is here. This is a great place for people to watch around and shop. For those who are not really into shopping, then strolling on the street could be a great idea. This is a golden opportunity at night especially when there is the lighting.

It is better to visit this area when people are around rather than when it is desolate.  A boat ride on the Qinhuai River is also an excellent idea when there is no weather conflict.

#7: Walk Around Nanjing 1912 district

Most clubs in the city are located in this part of the city where there are restaurants and bars around as well.  The vibe here is western like and you can enjoy drinking and dancing. There is Starbuck, craft brewery, and many other popular brands. Smoking in China is not a problem since it is quite common.

#8: Shopping at Xinjiekou

Xinjiekou is a great place where you can view neon lights after sunset. It is also a great place for shopping since different western brands are already present. This is also a great place for taking photos, especially due to the bright colors.

One of the other places you should not miss is the Fashion Lady. This place is really dreamy and worth every minute you spent.

#9: Visit the Presidential Palace

Presidential Palace is a place to learn more about the history of China. It is better to keep in mind that all the exhibits are only in Chinese. However, you should explore around with the help of a guide.

#10: Go to the top of Zifeng Tower

Zifeng Tower is the city’s tallest skyscraper and has a restaurant and an observatory located on the 72nd floor. This is a great place for an amazing city view. It should be a perfect choice when the weather is nice and there is no smog.

#11: The Yangtze river bridge

This is a double-decker bridge that was used for railway traffic and cars. It was the first of its kind when it was built. However, it is now a plain cement bridge today.

yangtze river bridge things to do

#12: See the Brand Da Bao’en Temple

This temple has different types of exhibits and light shows.


We have mentioned some of the things to do in Nanjing. Definitely there are many other things to explore as well.

You should also not fail to taste the food in Nanjing. It is very tasty and traditional. There are many restaurants to offer you the best local and international food while you are in Nanjing. There are some unforgettable treats that will appeal to your taste here.

In addition, it is better to find an accommodation facility that gives you the opportunity to walk even in the evening. There are some great spots to catch in even after sunset. You can explore different accommodation facilities according to your budget.

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