Chongqing municipality, in southwest China, is well-known for its mountains, rivers, misty skies, spicy hotpot, and beautiful women. In addition to those, here are five places you should check out as well.

  1. Hongya Cave

Hongya Cave is the best place to enjoy Chongqing at night. The traditional Bayu style buildings that surround Hongya Cave date back to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). The houses were built on the mountainside with support stilts and reach up to 11 stories high adjacent to a river. Nowadays, Hongya Cave caters primarily to tourists and every level is full of restaurants, hotels, bars, cafes, and souvenir shops. The top two floors have the best views of Chongqing and are the perfect place to appreciate all that Chongqing has to offer.

  1. Jiefangbei Business District (JBD)

This district is not only Chongqing’s central business district, but it has been the busiest shopping area in Chongqing for many years. It’s a beloved second home for every Chongqing shopaholic. This area is known for “the most plazas, most street food, and most beautiful women sightings.” You should be able to find anything you want to buy in JBD. Don’t forget to take a photo in front of the infamous Liberation Monument built in 1947 to commemorate the victory of the Sino-Japanese War.

  1. Ciqikou Old Town

Forget the modern, developed areas of Chongqing, we love the numerous old towns that can be found in this huge municipality. Ciqikou, built around 998-1004, is very close to downtown, and is perfect for a day trip. It was an ancient port before, and is considered to have perfect feng shui. Nowadays, it’s a great place for people to spend the weekend and experience Chongqing’s ancient culture.

Even though most of what you’ll find there has been rebuilt, the government has tried to maintain the original style and feel. This old town is a great place to have a cup of tea and relax or perhaps watch a Sichuan Chinese opera performance. It’s China so of course you’ll find plenty of food to eat. Three items are especially famous in Ciqikou and are said to be the most delicious food in the world. So don’t forget to pick up some mao xue wang, qiang zhang pi and spicy salty peanuts and let us know if they rocked your world.

  1. Zhazi Cave

If you’ve read the novel Hongyan before, you may have heard of this famous cave. Although it started out as a coalmine in 1920, after 1938 it became a secret prison for Kuomintang to lock up revolutionaries. Mountains surround the cave, which makes it the perfect hideaway. Several famous Chinese heroes were locked up there. In 1949, when the new Chinese government was founded (by the “revolutionaries” aka Mao Zedong and his friends), the Kuomintang set fire to the prison. For any history buffs who would like to get a glimpse of a turbulent time in China’s history, be sure to check out this cave.

  1. Black Valley

This valley is the closest natural scenic park to Chongqing and a lovely summer getaway. Here you’ll find 13km filled with fresh air, thick forests, hidden caves, fresh bamboo, and pristine waterfalls and rivers. It’s nature at its best. If you can no longer bear the sweltering summer heat of Chongqing, Black Valley is the perfect escape.

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