Located 60 kilometers west of Jingxian County in Southern Anhui Province, Zhaji Ancient village is one of the largest ancient residential complexes extant in China.
Zhaji Village was built during the Sui and Tang dynasties (581 AD-907 AD), with a long history of over 1,380 years. It is second to none in South Anhui province in terms of scale. The village has more than 300 Hui-style ancient structures built in Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties, covering a total area of 26,414 square kilometers. It still keeps the only architecture of the Yuan dynasty – Degong Hall, and the most complete Ming dynasty buildings – Aiyue (Loving Moon) Hall and Erjia Temple. Quite a lot of architectures built in the Ming and Qing dynasties are well preserved.
Zhaji is a very peaceful and beautiful village. Walking along the time-honored lane, you can appreciate the quaint yet lively architecture of Anhui province: glazed-tile-roofed cottages, solemn ancestral halls, exquisite arch bridges, and well-preserved temples. The age-old beautifulness of decadence and dilapidation of the village helps remind you of the splendid history of China’s countryside.
While the village is similar to the water towns in the south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River in construction, with bridges and meandering river around the residential buildings, Zhaji remains basically its pristine condition. Here people still live the way they always have. And you will see locals dry peanuts on giant bamboo baskets in the sun and make their own tofu.
You can get to Xuancheng by train or bus; then take a bus to Jingxian County at the Xuancheng Bus Station; and then take a bus to Zhaji from Jingxian. It’s a long trip, but you will find out it is worthwhile when you get there.