Hunan Ancient Towns
Hunan Province is home to many small villages occupied by local minorities. Most are lost in the depths of the valleys and are therefore difficult to access for travelers. Fenghuang Village and Furong Village of the Miao ethnic group are more easily accessible. So, it is the perfect opportunity to visit a Miao village and discover their way of life.
The old town of Fenghuang:
For a long time, Fenghuang was a town located on the border between the Han people and the Miao, Tujia, and Dong countries. Sheltered by its ramparts built under the Ming, Fenghuang prospered as a commercial and cultural city. Along the river, the town has developed around small alleys with traditional houses and many temples. The omnipresent water encouraged the inhabitants to build many stilted buildings.
Access to the city is free, but you can buy a ticket valid for two days including entry to all tourist sites and a 30-minute boat trip on the Tuojiang River. We recommend starting the visit to the village by its ramparts from the North Gate Tower and then descending into the old town. There is a bridge of wind and rain typical of the Dong people, the ancestral temple of the Tian family and other 7 temples, several residences of traders, and a small museum that is open to visitors.
Located on the way from Zhangjiajie to Fenghuang Ancient Town, Furong is a village arranged in the shape of an arc with a beautiful waterfall in its center. Indeed, the river crosses the village before throwing itself 60m lower. It is advisable to leave the town a little to take advantage of this singular view.
Furong is a Tujia ethnic village. Their homes and the tools used on-site offer a good overview of the living conditions in these remote villages. It is one of the few places where you can appreciate and discover the architecture and way of life of this ethnic group less famous than the Miao or the Dong.
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