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The name Nanjing means Southern Capital, and for six dynastic periods, as well as during the country's brief tenure as the Republic of China, the city was China's administrative capital. It was never as successful a capital as Beijing, and the locals chalk up the failures of several dynasties here to bad timing, but it could be that the laid-back atmosphere of the Yangtze Delta just
isn't as suited to political intrigue as the north.Nanjing offers travelers significantly more sites of historical importance than Shanghai. Among the most impressive are the remnants of the colossal Ming Dynasty city wall, built by 200,000 laborers to protect the new capital in the 14th century. A number of important monuments, tombs, and gates reflect the glory and instability of Nanjing's incumbency.
Suzhou has long been known as a center of culture, beauty, and sophistication. The "Venice of the East" produced scores of artists, writers...