Time freezes at Potan ancient town

(ezhejiang.gov.cn) Updated : 2017-11-22


Old houses and cobblestone streets at Potan, Xianju county show the long history of the ancient town [Photo by Jiang Liangliang] 

Potan ancient town in Xianju county of Zhejiang province is a typical sample of the antique towns in Jiangnan, the region south of the Yangtze River. 

Developed a thousand years ago, the town, where old buildings line cobblestone streets, presents the most traditional culture in Xianju. Two-kilometer-long dragon-shaped streets, and old houses from the Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties tell a long historical tale. 

The ancient town used to be a commercial center making good use of its connection of waterways and roads. It was the point of confluence of five brooks in the old days, which over time made it a hub for business and entertainment. 

Today's Potan has been transformed into a scenic area, but the original taste of the life here is well preserved. A few of its rarely-seen handicrafts and folk arts can still be experienced, like paper lamps and opera performances. Moreover, Chinese-style shops, banks, and teahouses take visitors back to old times.

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