Xi'an is more than 3,000 years old and was known as Chang'an in ancient times. For 1,000 years, the city was the capital for 13 dynasties, and a total of 73 emperors ruled here. Xi'an is the undisputed root of Chinese civilization having served as the capital city for the Zhou, Qin, Han, and Tang dynasties. With so much history within the ground the city lies upon, it is no wonder that there are so many historical ruins, museums and cultural relics to be found here. It was already influencing the world outside of the Great Wall of China as the eastern terminus of the Silk Road. Here traders from far and wide brought goods and ideas for sale and took goods and ideas back with them to their native countries. In present day Xi'an not much of its former glory remains within the city confines, due to the constant warfare and political changes that swept China particularly throughout the 20th Century. Today the city has a pleasant cosmopolitan flair to it and it is worth visiting for the famed Terracotta Warriors alone. It has often been said that, "if you have not been to Xi'an, you have not been to China!"
The enrollment of international students commenced in 1956. Till now, the university has turned out nearly 2000 graduates of different kinds for nearly 40 countries such as the United States, Germany, Japan, Australia, Vietnam, Tanzania and Yemen. The number of international students in university now is over 300.
The university is also one of the first universities which have provided foreign aid education and recruited students from regions like Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan. Following the trend of the internationalization of higher education of the country, in recent year, the university has strengthened its exchange and cooperation with more than 120 institution of higher education and scientific research institutions from countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Russia, Ukraine, Japan and the South Korea. It has also joined the Sino-US ““1 +2 +1” Talent Nurturing Program and established an international universities league with Rostov State Architectural University from Russia. The Chang’an Foreign Language Training Centre of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs is located here. In recent year, the university has hosted and sponsored a series of high-level international and national academic conferences.
After years of long exploration and practice, Chang’an University has gradually formed its spirit of “self-improving constantly, seeking truth and being pragmatic, striving in unity and pursuing excellence” and earned its high social reputation. On this new historical stage, the university continues to adhere to the socialist theory with Chinese characteristics and strive along the path of connotation, characteristic and harmonious development so as to maximally improve its talent cultivation quality and build the university into a first-class tertiary institution with distinctive characteristics and remarkable strength in China.
The city is surrounded by a city wall, in its middle the Bell Tower. From this one, the four main streets descend into the four points of the compass. Do not get confused by different names in tourist guides, addresses and bus stops: Nandajie, Nanda-Street, South-Street, South-Avenue are all the same.Locals often speak about Within city walls and Outside city walls when talking about locations. Outside the walls, the southern part is the most interesting, it offers shopping streets, bars and some nightlife.
There are plenty of buses departing everywhere in short-intervals (main lines every 5–10 minutes). If you are not confident enough with orientation, or if you do not like packed buses, the cheap taxis are the best alternative, broadly available, except for during rush hours.