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The next day, after an exhausting climbing the stairs of the great wall of China, effort, admittedly, was a little. And therefore, for contrast I wanted something more calm and relaxing. In the end the choice fell on a Summer residence of the Chinese emperors, located 20 km Northwest of downtown Beijing. Huge Park ensemble with an area of 290 sq km, with residential buildings, temples and pavilions, which stretches along the banks of the artificial lake Kunming known not only to every Chinese citizen, but also visitors from other countries. Here there and go.
On a visit to the Park the summer Palace Beijing (the so-called Summer Palace of the Chinese themselves), it is desirable to take the entire day and to observe the General rule — early to come, God will not hurt. You can get cheap transfers: first the zoo, then take bus No. 332, and expensive direct (tourist bus from Qianmen). And, finally, very expensive ($5) on the boat again from the zoo, thus repeating the ancient Imperial route. The entrance ticket to the Palace costs between 35 to 60 yuan depending on the season:
the history of the Park a difficult and rather tragic. It was started back in the XII century, but mostly the image of Beijing was determined only in the XVIII century, when Emperor Qianlong of the Qing dynasty decided on the 60th anniversary of his mother to make a spectacular gift in the form of pompous "recreation areas" which would strike the imagination of his contemporaries. Construction began in 1750 with the device for a man-made lake Kunming. And gradually the whole Park was covered with magnificent buildings.
But the beauty of it stood for only a century. In 1860 Beijing was invaded by the troops of the allied army of Britain and France, which destroyed the Park ensemble and a priceless collection of porcelain and other contents of the Palace was looted. Once fragrant island of Paradise on earth was in ruins.
And only after almost 30 years, in 1888, during the period of the actual reign of Empress Dowager Cixi, destroyed the Park was rebuilt and is called "yiheyuan", which means "the place of the deceased old-age and return to harmony after the blows of fate":
Today the complex of the summer Palace is a variety of pavilions, towers, scattered along a green hill, overlooking the lake. And there are bridges, there are Islands — in a word, the whole traditional Chinese landscape set. Adhere to the principle of "more water", because everything was subordinated to the main task — to rescue from the heat. At the time of my stay here in the sun, fortunately, was not, therefore, to appreciate all advantages of this proximity to the water I failed. But suppose can:
And the water here really is more than: the lake Kunminghu takes as many as 220 ha (i.e. three quarters of the Park) and is very fancy. You can ski, you can swim, in winter skating. But it's still the Summer Palace, so it is advisable to visit it in summer and close to him in off-season times (April-October):
Especially popular are boat trips to all sorts katerkah and boats. For example, a stylized Emperor's old boat, the ticket, on average, will be released in 10-15 yuan per hour,
However, ride on the water better at the end of the walk. And in the beginning it is better to wander the grounds. Usually first appears Wanshoushan mountain, i.e. the mountain of Longevity, on the Northern slope of which stands the Lama temple, built by the Emperor Qianlong:
This temple was built not for ethnic minorities and not for the prayers of the people living outside of the Summer Palace. It is a political step, it is a sign to everyone that Buddhism is the national religion of China, because a Lama temple was built in the Imperial garden. This meant that the government of the Qing dynasty realized the importance of Lamaism, and that Beijing has become a national center of Lamaism. At that time the temple flourished: there were several hundred Lama priests and spend large sums of money:
the Emperor Qianlong began to take the leaders of ethnic communities from the North-West, the Mongol religious leaders and sheltered the sixth Dalai Lama. Understanding the importance of religion in the unification of the North, North-West, Qinghai and Tibet, the Qianlong used this aspect in its policy and it has paid off. Lamaism is firmly rooted in Chinese soil, bringing formerly distant peoples:
But it was hard times, and in 1860 the Church, as well as the entire Park complex, was turned to ashes by the army of aggressors:
for a Long time he stood in total disrepair, and even in 1888 when Empress Dowager Cixi rebuilt the Summer Palace, the money to complete the restoration of the temple is not enough. Only one great hall has been restored on the back side of longevity Hill, the Hall of Buddhist Doctrine, and now you can see:
Now let us come down to earth. Below, on the Northern slope of Longevity Hill is the shopping street Suzhou:
it was Constructed when Emperor Qianlong more than 200 years ago. It is believed that there were two reasons for the construction of this road in Imperial garden. First, when Emperor Qianlong traveled with his mother Empress Dowager Saosin the South, he was impressed with the water district Suzhou in the lower reaches of the Yangtze river. Here people traded directly from boats along rivers and canals. He is never seen in the North. Therefore, Qianlong decided to construct something similar in Beijing:
the Second reason was that the Empress, princesses and concubines at the time lived behind the walls of the palaces and were cut off from the outside world — their life was boring. Therefore, the Suzhou street was great fun. Because built was not just a street — eunuchs and maids dressed vendors, buyers and passers-by. When Emperor Qianlong came with his mother on this street, it was already full of "merchants" and "buyers" who recklessly traded with each other. Even beggars and pickpockets scurrying around in the crowd. For more convincing:
In black for the entire residence 1860, during the invasion of the Anglo-French forces, the sad fate did not pass over her. Shopping street Suzhou was completely burned. During the restoration of the Summer Palace when Empress Cixi of money on its restructuring also not enough. And only in 1986 for the reconstruction of the street as part of restoration work in the Summer Palace. The works ended only in September 1990:
Now, the Suzhou street in the length of 600 meters, it has more than 60 shops, restaurants, tea houses and galleries, banks, pharmacies, dye rooms and bookstores. All sellers, boatmen, policemen and musicians dressed in robes of the Qing dynasty. The inscriptions on the shops made in traditional style:
Say, it becomes especially beautiful in the evening, in the light of the lanterns. But this, unfortunately, to observe firsthand failed:
Personally, I like the summer Palace Beijing was memorable all-consuming inner peace. As in the famous Japanese gardens here, there is peace and harmony. For several centuries the residence was decorated in various ways: there were built important temples, rare trees have been planted, brought beautiful stones:
In some places there are even entire stone labyrinths:
And sometimes you can accidentally stumble upon such rare exhibits in the open air:
But after wandering around the interior of the Park, sooner or later, again down to the lake. Here, after all, the main objects for inspection. Here's one of them, with a straightforward name — "Pavilion is open". In fact — an observation deck. But it is not all that simple. It turns out that it is the largest pavilion in the Summer Palace. Pavilion of similar design and this size you won't find anywhere else in China:
with great interest I always look at sculptures of all sorts of living creatures, which in China is a great variety. One such example is a Chinese mythical beast tiling. This wonderful animal is the chief of the 360 animals living on land. It sometimes includes (instead of tiger) in Chinese the list of four noble animals, along with dragon, Phoenix and tortoise.
tiling is a kind of Chimera: as a rule, he has a few horns, green and blue scaly skin, the body with the hooves of a horse or deer, the dragon's head and a bear tail. He lives at least 2,000 years, but to see it given only to the favorites. Like the European unicorn, tiling symbolizes longevity and prosperity. Therefore, his image often was applied to the subjects of the Imperial household:
the Bridge is "Jade belt", or Audicao is also a popular point of attraction for many tourists who want to make a beautiful picture with considerable, in General, the height.
It is the highest arch bridge of six available here. The distance from the water to the bridge — 10 meters.
It was built in 1751-1764 the years under Emperor Qianlong in the style of "lunar" bridges, typical of the countryside of southern China. During construction they used marble and other building materials white. On the railing of the bridge is engraved with cranes and other animals. But this is an unusual form of the arch was chosen to under the bridge could sail Imperial dragon boat:
In our day boats are certainly more modest. But all the same!
the Place of Imperial China... Where literally every bridge, every tower bear the imprint of the Majesty of the celestial Empire:
But, as they say, one cannot embrace the unembraceable. This fully applies to the Summer Palace. Its layout (not as orderly as in the temples and palaces of Beijing), and also its size makes it difficult to single out any single route in the Park. Mostly just wandering through the territory from one beauty to another. And at the end of the day beginning to weigh on the side of the garden-Park zone. Here is the perfect place to end a walk. The atmosphere of harmony and prosperity:
In General, will be in Beijing, do not be lazy to go to the summer residence of the emperors summer Palace. In my opinion, it very well conveys not only the architectural appearance and flavor of ancient China, but also shows the eternal pursuit of the Chinese people by the grandeur of his creations and insatiable lust for power and avarice of its rulers:
1. Beijing. Forbidden city
2. The great wall of China. Badaling
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