If you want to see Nanjing from above, make your way to the Nanjing Purple Mountains (紫金山, Zijinshan). After wrapping up a few temples, ancient city walls and lakes in Nanjing, we set to see a bit of the nature surrounding Nanjing. As usually is the case for me with China travel, this just happened to be on a routinely polluted day, so views didn’t quite live up to the expectations. Nonetheless, these mountains and the nearby parks host a number of interesting attractions well worth exploring and the day turned out to be quite pleasant and enjoyable.
First up, going up the cable car…
I wish I could show you more but the pollution was blinding. Was hard to see past the nearby trees.
But, once up on the mountains, there are a few wonderful hiking trails that could take up to a few days, depending on your preferences and speed. Lots of local friendly groups going up and down the mountains.
Down below, are some famous attractions, like the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum (明孝陵), the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum (中山陵), the tomb of Sun Quan (孙权墓), as well as the Nanjing Botanical Garden Memorial Sun Yat-Sen (see photos below) most of which you can explore with one day pass and using a bus that runs between the sites.
Though you really don’t need to, we rented one of those small electric cars that can take you around the large garden areas.
If you’re in need of a map…
We really didn’t stay long enough and did this whole day on a bit of a rush, but we did manage to do the highlights.
Overall, Nanjing proved to be a pleasant surprise. We came in mainly looking for history, but found Nanjing to be a charming city, well taken care of with some beautiful nature and very interesting attractions. I hope to go back one day and explore more.