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Manor a witness to the family's past glory

By Li Yang | China Daily | Updated: 2013-05-09 00:19

IF YOU GO

Yuci county is accessible from Taiyuan by train or bus. The ride takes about two hours. From Yuci's railway station, take a bus or taxi to Chang Family Manor - about one-hour ride away.

There are several ancient courtyard houses in Yuci, Qixian and Taigu counties, such as those that once belonged to Wang Family, Qiao Family and Qu Family. Chang Family Manor is the biggest of the lot. It takes about one hour by taxi to go from one courtyard to the next.

The opening time for these mansions is from 8 am to 6:30 pm from March to October and 8 am to 5:30 pm from November to February. The ticket price ranges from 60 to 80 yuan ($10-13).

The best visiting seasons are spring and fall. Avoid Chinese holidays, unless you do not mind elbowing your way through the crowds.

Remember to book your hotel early if you plan to stay overnight, especially during peak seasons, because of the limited accommodation capacity.

Most local dishes are made of wheat flour. Prepare to eat noodles of every kind.

Try to read about these families' histories before the trip. Some of their stories have been adapted into TV series, films and documentaries. If you are not prepared with some background information, you may find it boring going from one manor/yard to another, which seem rather alike.

It takes about four hours for visitors to have a detailed tour of Chang Family Manor and about two hours for the other smaller courtyard houses.

Manor a witness to the family's past glory

Manor a witness to the family's past glory

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