Many tourists pass through Chongqing at the start of their Yangtze River cruise, but it would be a pity to miss out on spending some time visiting Chongqing too. This bustling municipality was the Chinese capital from 1937-1945 and is now home to over 28 million people.
If you are about to embark on a Yangtze River cruise, the Chongqing Three Gorges Museum is an excellent introduction to the route you will take. As well as describing Chongqing’s war time history, this museum details cultural, ecological and historical information about the region.
Just over 160 kilometers from Chongqing, the Dazu Rock Carvings are a UNESCO world heritage site. Spread over 40 separate sites, these exquisitely painted sculptures are over 1,200 years old.
In the west of Chongqing, Ciqikou is a 1000-year-old town that became a protected historical site in 1998. Set on the lower reaches of the Jialing River, the town attracts tourists with its traditional surroundings and shops selling handicrafts, embroidery and porcelain. The narrow streets give tourists and residents alike an impression of what Chongqing must have been like before it became the sprawling urban metropolis it is today.
As well as being a start and end point for the Yangtze river cruise, Chongqing is a transport hub in central China. It is served by direct flights from Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. For travelers on a budget, Chongqing is also served by several overnight trains from Xi’an.