A popular embarkation or disembarkation point for Yangtze River cruises, the capital of the Hubei province is a conglomeration of three cities into one sprawling metropolis. Modern high-rises meet ancient history in this industrial city and business center, where rapid-changing developments coexist alongside a riverfront and lakes and parks, and visitors can be transported by multi-tiered temples and a smattering of excellent museums.
What We Love
Jiqing Street: If you're still in port in the evening, this animated pedestrian strip is a fun spot to stroll for its rows of cheap eateries, shops, and assorted buskers.
Wuhan Yangtze Great Bridge: Snap photos or wander across this lengthy bi-level bridge — which has lanes for pedestrians, cars, and trains — spanning the Yangtze; the double-deck construction was completed in the late 1950s as a collaboration between Russian and Chinese engineers.
Best Known For
Hubei Provincial Museum: Brimming with pottery, weaponry, porcelain, and jade, this world-class institution houses a collection of ancient bronze bells and chimes, which were unearthed from the tomb of Marquis Yi of Zeng, circa 433 B.C. There are even performances of these ritual instruments in the museum's concert hall.
Yellow Crane Tower: A sight to behold, this elegant, yellow-tiled Chinese tower was first constructed in 223 A.D. (and has since been rebuilt numerous times). You can get a pleasing bird's-eye view over the city and the Yangtze River when you get to the top of the tower's five tiers.
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Who It's Best For
History Buffs: With its ancient temples and trove of cultural relics, Wuhan affords a fascinating glimpse into China's long and storied history.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
Mercury Rising: Subtropical Wuhan is known as one of the "Three Furnaces" of China for good reason — sweltering summer temps are often paired with an oppressive humidity.
Elissa Garay is a Brooklyn-based contributor to ShermansCruise who also writes for Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure.