Tang West Market Museum

Updated: Dec 7, 2018 Print
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Tang West Market Museum

Address: 118 South Laodong Road, Lianhu district, Xi’an, Shaanxi province
Websites: (En) (Cn)
9:00-17:30, 1 April-31 October (No entry after 16:30)
9:00-17:00, 1 November-31 March (No entry after 16:00)
Closed on Mondays and the eve of Chinese New Year
General admission: Free (passport required for entry)


Thousands of years ago in the city of Chang'an (today's Xi'an), the West Market of the Great Tang Empire (618-907) was the largest trade center on the planet, dolling out spices, wares, and silks. It also laid the foundations for the formation of the Silk Road. The splendor of the ancient market has been lost with time, but the Tang West Market Museum will bring the Tang Dynasty back to life.

Located on the original site of the West Market, the museum occupies an area of 35,000 square meters, of which 11,000 sq m are exhibition area and the remaining 2,500sq m are dedicated to preservation.

The museum is privately-run and opened in 2010. The ground floor of the museum preserves the archaeological site of the original streets and infrastructure of the West Market, including the "cross road" (shizijie), the well and ditch, the stone-panel bridge, and an expanse of stratum dated to the high Tang period where chariot grooves are still seen on the surface.
The museum’s collection has now expanded to include around 20,000 objects, made up of the archaeological finds of the West Market site and the private collections of the museum’s founder. The exhibits on display reflect the long history from the Shang Dynasty (16th century-11th century BC) to the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

The Museum is divided into five sections: the Permanent Exhibition, the Thematic Exhibition, the Temporary Exhibition, the Special Exhibition, and the Art Gallery. The basic exhibition displays cultural relics unearthed from this site, as well as various trade categories; the Thematic Exhibition showcases the traditional workmanship that existed on the ancient Silk Road. The Special Exhibition displays inscriptions and excellent works that inspire an appreciation of history.

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