Dapeng Ancient City Tours – Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, China
Dapeng Ancient City
About this place
Dapeng Ancient City is an old fortress-town overlooking Daya Bay on Dapeng Peninsula in the east of Shenzhen. The fortress was first established in 1394 and developed into a large town during the Ming and Qing dynasties. The remains of this walled town cover an area of 10,000 square meters.
There are residents in the alleys outside its walls but nobody lives in the city anymore (although you will see people involved in restoration and reconstruction work). This makes for a slightly eerie experience as you can wander the silent streets freely, watched only by stray dogs. A map is provided with a ticket and the city’s most important structures are highlighted in yellow. There are well-preserved shrines, barracks, administrative buildings, private residences and the ubiquitous temple to Matsu.
The best way to see the city is to enter from the South Gate and move in an anti-clockwise direction, taking in Dongmen Street and Zheng Street. Between the South Gate and the East Gate, the Yiwen Building houses a small exhibition of documents and artefacts recording the city’s history. Dapeng Ancient City is designated as a “patriotism education site” and its important role in the Opium Wars and, after the cessation of Hong Kong, as a frontier garrison is emphasized.
Opposite the Yiwen Building is a residence of a former admiral. The house, which has inner-courtyards, bedrooms, a kitchen and an ancestral worship hall, is an excellent example of how the upper echelons of pre-Liberation Chinese society lived.
A visit to Dapeng Ancient City is well worth the one-hour trip from Luohu. The emptiness gives Dapeng a greater sense of history than Nantou Ancient City. It is a great place to see the layout and architecture of an ancient Chinese city, without the interferences of a modern one.
Dapeng Ancient City is in Longang District just outside the Special Economic Zone. Bus nos. 360 and 364 take about one hour from Luohu District to Dapeng Town (passing the Meisha Beach Parks on the way). From there it is a ten-minute ride on bus 818.
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