China is a remarkably modern country, from the fantastical architecture of Shang Hai to the bustling arts district of Beijing. However, some travelers yearn for the romance and beauty of ancient China, and Pingyao certainly delivers. Pingyao is a rare preserved Chinese town. Pingyao was formerly the economic center of ancient China, and so it was oriented according to the cardinal directions, with orderly grid-like streets and a strong square wall to protect from intruders. Travelers used to the chaotic streets of European cities will enchanted by the sloping roofs, temples, and centuries’ old pagodas. Red lanterns still decorate courtyards and compounds that have been standing for dozens of centuries. For a trip back to ancient China, you can’t beat Pingyao.