Saturday, March 8, 2008

Summer Palace - Beijing, China

The Summer Palace is located within the Haidian District, northwest of Beijing. It is the best preserved imperial garden in the world and the largest of its kind that still in existence in China today. It is mainly composed of the Longevity Hill and the Kunming Lake. The huge garden boasts about 3,000 garden architecture and is broken into three zones: office zone, living quarters and sightseeing area.

The Summer Palace occupies a total area of more than 290 hectares. The Longevity Hill covers one fourth of the total area while the Kunming Lake covers the rest three quarters. The beautiful former imperial garden is set off by a multitude of highly decorated buildings, halls, pavilions, bridges, towers, pagodas, isles, and courtyards. The harmonious layout of the garden is a Chinese architectural masterpiece that combines both the gorgeous landscape and the treasure of the traditional Chinese gardening art. More info at Wikipedia.

The famous Marble Boat (the largest marble boat in the world) on the grounds of the Summer Palace. It was first erected in 1755 during the reign of the Qianlong Emperor. The original pavilion was made from a base of large stone blocks which supported a wooden superstructure done in a traditional Chinese design.

The Long Corridor (Chinese: 长廊; pinyin: Cháng Láng) is a covered walkway in the Summer Palace in Beijing, China. First erected in the middle of the 18th century, it is famous for its length (728 meter) in conjunction with its rich painted decoration (more than 14,000 paintings).

Video clip of the long corridor.

Standing atop the Longevity Hill, the Tower of Buddhist Incense is the highest building in the Summer Palace.

Panoramic view video clip.