Pingyao County is 58.4 miles (94 km) southwest of Taiyuan. It comprises of five towns and nine villages, an area of 486.5 square miles (1,260 sq km) within its jurisdiction. This small county was noted for some magnificent residences in ancient traditional styles rather than any appeal in natural beauty.The birthplace of the Jin Businessmen (one of the two power houses during the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties), it played an important role in the economic development of Shanxi during that period. The first Chinese trading shop was opened there. Then, for the next hundred years, the city was home to almost all of the large trading shops in the country. To a certain extent, the city played a role to China during the eighteenth century what Wall Street is to the US.It is no longer very prosperous, but the grand Pingyao Old City, which was constructed a thousand years ago, stands the test of time. It was mentioned in the World Cultural Heritage in 1997, alongside with the Zhenguo Temple and Shuanglin Temple also in the vicinity. Wandering along the Ancient Ming and Qing Street amidst rows of residences inside the old town, you can still sense its former grandeur.
(Pingyao Travel China: Location, Attractions, Tours, Tips https://www.travelchinaguide.com/cityguides/shanxi/pingyao/)