Top Ten historical sites in China

Badaling Great wall

Badaling Great wall is the site of the most visited section of the Great Wall of China, approximately 50 miles (80 km) northwest of urban Beijing city in Yanqing County, which is within the Beijing municipality. The portion of the wall running through the site was built during the Ming Dynasty, along with a military outpost reflecting the location's strategic importance. The highest point of Badaling is Beibalou, approximately 0.63 miles (1,015 m) above sea level.The portion of the wall at Badaling has undergone heavy restoration, and in 1957 it was the first section of the wall to open to tourists. Now visited annually by millions, the immediate area has seen significant development, including hotels, restaurants, and a cable car. The recently completed Badaling Expressway connects Badaling with central Beijing. Line S2, Beijing Suburban Railway, served people who wanted to go to the Great Wall from Beijing North Railway Station. People can buy tickets at Beijing North Railway Station to Badaling Station. A bus also runs frequently from Deshengmen to Badaling.

Summer Palace

Situated in the western outskirts of Haidian District, the Summer Palace is 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) from central Beijing. Having the largest royal park and being well preserved, it was designated, in 1960 by the State Council, as a Key Cultural Relics Protection Site of China. Containing examples of the ancient arts, it also has graceful landscapes and magnificent constructions. The Summer Palace is the archetypal Chinese garden, and is ranked amongst the most noted and classical gardens of the world. In 1998, it was listed as one of the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

Forbidden City

The Forbidden City was the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. It is located in the middle of Beijing, China, and now houses the Palace Museum. For almost five hundred years, it served as the home of emperors and their households, as well as the ceremonial and political centre of Chinese government.Built in 1406 to 1420, the complex consists of 980 surviving buildings with 8,707 bays of rooms and covers 720,000 m2 (7,800,000 sq ft). The palace complex exemplifies traditional Chinese palatial architecture, and has influenced cultural and architectural developments in East Asia and elsewhere. The Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987, and is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.

Ming Tombs

50 kilometers northwest from Beijing City lies the Ming Tombs - the general name given to the mausoleums of 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644). The mausoleums have been perfectly preserved, as has the necropolis of each of the many emperors. Because of its long history, palatial and integrated architecture, the site has a high cultural and historic value. The layout and arrangement of all thirteen mausoleums are very similar but vary in size as well as in the complexity of their structures.

 

Terra Cotta Warriors

Terra Cotta Warriors is the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses of Qin Shi Huang the First Emperor of China. The terracotta figures, dating from 210 BC, were discovered in 1974 by some local farmers near Xi'an, Shaanxi province, China near the Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor. The figures vary in height (183–195 cm - 6 ft–6 ft 5in), according to their roles, with the tallest being the generals. The figures include warriors, chariots, horses, officials, acrobats, strongmen, and musicians. Current estimates are that in the three pits containing the Terracotta Army there were over 8,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses, the majority of which are still buried in the pits. Many archeologists believe that there are many pits still waiting to be discovered.

Shaolin Temple

The Order of Shaolin Ch'an, founded in 520 C.E. by the Indian monk Tamo, is a branch of Ch'an (Zen) Buddhism dedicated to the study of nature and humanity's place in our world. Through the physical study of martial arts we learn to extinguish our egos, through the study of nature we seek understanding of the unity of all life, and through meditative practices we strive to maximize the potential of each individual.The OSC was brought to the United States and (briefly) Canada beginning in 1902, as the most senior echelon of Shaolin monks fled the chaos and destruction of the Boxer Rebellion, the end of the Chinese Empire, the Warlord Period, and the purges of communism. From the late 1920's through 1974, the OSC was headquartered in and operated from New York's Chinatown. Today, the Order continues to preserve and perpetuate Shaolin teachings from its headquarters near Portland, Oregon. In order to better function within the laws of its adopted country, the OSC incorporated as a religious 501(c)(3) non-profit in 2003.

Suzhou Garden

When Suzhou is mentioned, the first thought in every Chinese mind is of its gardens. It is said that the gardens to the south of Yangtze River are the best in the world, and Suzhou gardens are the best among them. The history of the classical gardens of Suzhou can be traced back to 6 BC. By the time of the Ming and Qing dynasties, Suzhou City had become a garden city with more than 200 gardens. Having experienced a long history, only a part of the gardens are preserved perfectly. Because of their ingenious man-made landscape and the ideal of harmony between heaven and human beings, the gardens have gained a high reputation world wide. Canglang Pavilion (Blue Wave Pavilion), Lingering Garden, Humble Administrator's Garden and Lion Grove Garden are the four top gardens in Suzhou, representing the architectural styles of Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties respectively. The latter three gardens were added to the World Heritage List in 1997. Additionally, the Garden of Master of Nets will definitely appeal to you, as it is the best example of small and medium-sized gardens.

Xian City Wall

When Zhu Yuanzhang, the first Emperor of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), captured Huizhou, a hermit named Zhu Sheng admonished him that he should 'built high walls, store abundant food supplies and take time to be an Emperor,' so that he could fortify the city and unify the other states. After the establishment of the Ming dynasty, Zhu Yuanzhang followed his advice and began to enlarge the wall built initially during the old Tang dynasty (618 -907), creating the modern Xian City Wall. It's the most complete city wall that has survived in China, as well being one of the largest ancient military defensive systems in the world.

Longmen Grottoes

Longmen Grottoes or Longmen Caves are located 12 km south of present day Luòyáng in Henan province, China. The grottoes, which overwhelmingly depict Buddhist subjects, are densely dotted along the two mountains: Xiangshan (to the east) and Longmenshan (to the west). The Yi River flows northward between them. For this reason, the area used to be called Yique (The Gate of the Yi River). From north to south, the distance covered by grottoes is about one km. Along with the Mogao Caves and Yungang Grottoes, the Longmen Grottoes are one of the three most famous ancient sculptural sites in China. There are over 2100 niches, more than 100,000 statues, some 40 pagodas and 3600 tablets and steles in the caves of Guyang, Binyang and Lianhua.

Chinese Ancient Silk Road

Silk Road or Silk Routes is an extensive interconnected network of trade routes across the Asian continent connecting East, South, and Western Asia with the Mediterranean world, as well as North and Northeast Africa and Europe. The term "Seidenstraße" (literally "Silk Road") was coined retrospectively by the German geographer Ferdinand von Richthofen in 1877 and has since found its way into general usage. It was the major reason for the connection of trade routes into an extensive trans-continental network. In recent years, both the maritime and overland Silk Routes are again being used, often closely following the ancient routes.