An Excursion to the Summer Home of the Emperors by Patrick


Last month, in the end of November after visited Beijing for about 5 days, we take a short train trip to Chengdu on weekend. A trip to Chengde was worth it and really nice since the city is also not located too far from the capital. We spent 1 day tour in Chengde and visited the most favorite attraction called Chengde Mountain Resort. Escape to Chengde from the crowded city was a nice experience. The city, with a topography of mostly plateaus and mountains, remains as an outstanding example of the harmonious Chinese integration of buildings into the natural environment.

Chengde Mountain ResortThe Place Where We Had Rest on Chengde Mountain Resort

As like I already say it before, a trip to Chengde mainly focused for a short excursion to the mountain resort, which was used as emperors summer resort, escape from heat in Beijing when summer. Chengde Mountain Resort was used to be a summer resort and hunting ground for emperors of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). The Kangxi, Qianlong and Jiaqing Emperors often spent several months a year here to escape the summer heat in the capital Beijing. I heard from our guide, it took a total of 89 years to complete it. It is a vast complex of palaces and administrative and ceremonial buildings and even regarded as the largest existing imperial garden in the world. For visitors who already visit Forbidden City then you can imagine this complex is bigger than Forbidden City with impressive series of temples, lake and gardens.

Chengde Mountain ResortOne Spot of the Lake at Chengde Mountain Resort

The Chengde Mountain Resort is divided into four areas including the palace area, lake area, plain area and mountain area. It is most famous for the 72 scenic spots which were named by the Kangxi and Qianlong Emperors. In the palace area, we can enter the palace rooms which have been turned into museum exhibits. Tour guide guided us to have a view to the complete wax exhibit where showing the history of the Qing dynasty, with decent English translations.

By visit Chengde, we not only knew about the history and background of the site but also can enjoy the nature landscapes in surroundings. Moreover, it also gives us an excellent experience to appreciate the true value of the cultural and historical landscape of China. It is such a great escape from hustling bustling city of Beijing to know more about other story of China.

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