Dongxi Ancient Town – Ticket, Opening Hours, Location, and Highlights

dongxi ancient town

Dongxi Ancient Town (东溪古镇), nestled in the southern part of Qijiang County, Chongqing, is a picturesque destination with a rich history spanning over 2,200 years. Established as an official town over 1,300 years ago during the second year of the WuDe era in the Tang Dynasty (619 AD), Dongxi Ancient Town boasts a wealth of historical and cultural landscapes. The convergence of the Dongding River, Fulin River, and Qijiang River creates a serene atmosphere enhanced by over 3,000 ancient Chinese scholar trees, forming one of the largest such groves in the southwestern region.

The town is adorned with traditional Ming and Qing Dynasty-style stilted houses, contributing to the charm of its landscape, often described as a tranquil scene of “small bridges, flowing water, and households.” This picturesque setting has served as a source of inspiration for art students and their instructors from local art academies who frequently engage in sketching and painting here. Additionally, Dongxi Ancient Town has been featured in popular television dramas such as “The Foolish Teacher Chief,” “Red Pursuit Order,” “The City of Memories,” “Silent Mountains,” and “Lost in Lonely City.”

Historically, during the Spring and Autumn and Warring States periods, Dongxi was part of the ancient kingdom of “Yelang.” The people of Yelang were diverse, consisting of various ethnic groups like Dong, Miao, and Liao. To this day, the locals in Dongxi continue to sing traditional Yelang mountain songs, keeping alive the cultural heritage of their ancestors.

Table of Contents

Basic Information

Estimated Length of TourHalf a day
Ticket PriceFree
Opening Hours24 hours a day throughout the year

Location and Transportation

Dongxi Ancient Town is situated in the southeastern edge of the Sichuan Basin, at the northern end of the DaLuo Mountains in Guizhou, and in the southern part of Chongqing, specifically in Qijiang County. This historical town is conveniently located just one hour away from the central area of Chongqing.

To reach Dongxi Ancient Town from Chongqing, you can take a direct express bus from the Chongqing Sigongli Transfer Hub (重庆四公里换乘枢纽站). The bus ticket costs approximately 39 RMB.

Highlights of Dongxi Ancient Town

One Stone, Three Steles

one stone three streles in dongxi ancient town

Located in Yutuo Village, Dongxi Town, the “One Stone, Three Steles” is a remarkable rock formation that stands approximately 8 meters high and 10 meters wide. On this rock, three steles are embedded with inscriptions of historical significance. The first stele bears the inscription of a royal decree dated the ninth day of the fifth month in the nineteenth year of the Guangxu reign of the Qing Dynasty (1893). The second stele records the imposition of penalties on the local fishermen, dated the twentieth day of the twelfth month in the tenth year of the Guangxu reign (1884). The third stele details discussions about Yutuo and Yangsheng Tang, dated the thirteenth day of the fourth month in the first year of the Guangxu reign (1875). Unfortunately, during the Cultural Revolution, the steles were damaged, and the inscriptions became somewhat indistinct. Adjacent to the rock, a small water channel flows towards the river, and a stone bridge spans the channel.

Wangye Temple

wangye temple in dongxi ancient town

Situated to the left of Taiping Bridge in Dongxi Town, Wangye Temple has been well-preserved since its construction in the sixth year of the Qianlong era (1741) during the Qing Dynasty. It underwent renovations during the Qianlong era and the third year of the Xianfeng era (1853). The temple, covering an area of over 300 square meters, is made of earth and wood, overlooking both the Qijiang River and Dongding River. Inside the temple, more than 40 statues of various sizes depict different bodhisattvas. Two ancient Huangju trees, each over 300 years old, flank the temple on both sides.

Wan Tian Palace

wan tian palace in dongxi ancient town

Wan Tian Palace, located at 28 Chaoyang Street in Dongxi Town, traces its origins back to the second year of the Kangxi era (1663) in the Qing Dynasty. Renovations were carried out in the twenty-sixth year of the Qianlong era (1736). The temple, spanning over 1000 square meters, is constructed with brick and wood. Within the temple, ancestral deities and other sacred figures are enshrined. The entrance and the main hall boast intricately sculpted dragon and phoenix motifs, each weighing several tons. A historic stage covering more than 60 square meters is present, along with observation towers on either side. The temple showcases exquisite craftsmanship through its carved beams, painted pillars, and wooden reliefs. It houses over 40 bodhisattva statues, as well as traditional instruments such as bells and drums.

Vlog about Dongxi Ancient Town

Useful Tips Summarized from Reviews

Exploring the Attractions:

  • Begin your exploration of Dongxi Ancient Town by visiting the cultural attractions located on the back streets, such as Nanhua Palace and Wantian Palace. These sites offer insights into the town’s rich history and cultural heritage.
  • After exploring the cultural sites, take a stroll down the road near a shop called “Cupid” and head towards Taiping Bridge for a leisurely walk. Enjoy the scenic views and immerse yourself in the charm of the ancient town.
  • Next, continue your journey by walking from the road behind Wangye Temple to Shuikou Temple, where you can visit Maobaozi (a local delicacy) and the local market to purchase specialty products.

Time Management:

  • Allocate at least half a day to explore the main parts of the ancient town thoroughly. To make the most of your visit, arrive in the morning and start your exploration from the lower part of the town, gradually moving upwards.
  • Consider having lunch around the main street or Wan Shou Square, where you can find various dining options offering local specialties.
  • Spend the afternoon exploring the remaining areas of the town by walking along the downhill paths. Take breaks along the way to enjoy a cup of tea at a serene spot, allowing yourself to relax and unwind in the tranquil atmosphere.

Dining Options: Dongxi Ancient Town offers a variety of dining options, ranging from small eateries to specialty restaurants. However, be prepared for some waiting time, especially at popular eateries, as they may have queues due to the high number of visitors.

Footwear and Attire: Wear comfortable walking shoes, preferably sports shoes, as the ancient town features many cobblestone paths and uneven terrain. Comfortable attire suitable for walking and exploring is also recommended.

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