The Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes are located in Dunhuang County

The Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes are located in Dunhuang County, Gansu Province, some twenty-five kilometers southeast of the city. The common name for the grottoes is the Thousand?Buddha caves. These are located on the precipitous face of the east ridge of the Mingsha Mountains. Their construction began in the year 366 AD and, by the time of the Tang-dynasty empress named Wu Zetian, more than one thousand rooms had been carved and painted. Those that have been preserved to this day include rooms from the dynasties of Northern Wei, Western Wei, Northern Zhou, Sui, Tang, Five Dynasties, Song, Westerm Xia, and Yuan. In all there are some 492 grottoes, with wall paintings covering 45,000 square meters, and containing 2,415 painted stone carvings. This is considered a priceless artistic trove. It is now protected as a National Key Cultural Relics Protected Unit, and in 1987 it was listed among the ranks of World Cultural Heritage Sites. Welcome to China, Chinatourguide.com is pleasure to provide service for your China tours, We also provide Thailand tour packages or Cambodia tour packages.

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Research has shown that the Mogao Grottoes are continually suffering damages caused by the natural environment and aging of the caves; factors such as mountain slitting and sand and wind erosion are exacerbated by the large number of tourists. Based on scientific surveys, 20 percent of the 45,000-square meter total area covered by the murals are damaged to different degrees, with this damage occurring at a much faster rate than in ancient times. President of the Dunhuang Academy Fan Jinshi says we can only slow down, rather than completely stop the aging process.

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The mural art in Mogao Grottoes is unique. The murals, especially the story telling murals, have made Mogao Grottoes famous all over the world. There are no grottoes that can reach or exceed it in the world. The story telling murals depict mainly Buddhist thought including the scriptures, the biography and stories of Buddha, and other Buddhist historical records. In addition, there are Gods, mighty warriors, a thousand small Buddhas, as well as flying Buddhist angels too. The murals in Mogao Grottoes are famous for their grand scale, extensive subject matter and exquisite art. For these reasons, Mogao Grottoes is called the “library on the wall”.

The Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple in Dali

The Three Pagodas of Chongsheng Temple 崇圣三塔 used to be situated at the foot of Diancang Mountain on the shores of Lake Erhai. The temple no longer exists, but the three pagodas, different in size and history, remain. Qianxun Pagoda, the biggest of the three, is described variously in historical records, but from its structure and shape, it must have been built after the Kaicheng period (836 to 840) of the Tang Dynasty and undergone repairs in the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties. When the pagoda was repaired again in 1979, three copper plates, found in the bottom of the steeple, stated that the pagoda was repaired in 1000, 1142 and 1154. Also discovered were statues of Buddha and bodhisattvas, scriptures, seals, coins, a bronze mirror, porcelain, articles used in Buddhist ritual, musical instruments, daily-use articles, various kinds of small pagodas, and gold and silver ware. Unearthed from the pagoda’s underground palace were ceramic Buddhist statues and pagodas and matrices for printing Buddhist scriptures in Sanskrit.

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Straight and towering, the Quadrangular Qianxun Pagoda, the main one was exquisitely constructed, with multiple tiers of eaves. It has 16 storeys and a height of 69.13 meters. In the central part of each facade, a shrine was built and a Buddha statue of white marble installed. The two other pagodas of 10 stories are 42.19 meters high. They are solid and beautiful, and in octagonal shape. Coated with white mud, and carved with a shrine, Buddha statue, lotus flowers, etc. on each story, the pagodas look elegant and stately.

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The newly built Chongsheng Temple covers an area of 40 hectares. It is arranged along a main axis and two auxiliary axes. Lying in proper order along the main axis are the Gate to the Temple, Heavenly Kings, Maitreya, Eleven-faced Goddess of Mercy, and Great Hero Halls, the Pavilion of Achuoyie Goddess of Mercy, Mountain-Lake Grand View Stone Archway, and the Lake Viewing Tower. Along the two auxiliary axes are Arhat, Eminent Monks (the nine kings who became monks), Founders (six founders of the Zen sect), and Heavenly Kings Halls, and Institute of Buddhism.

Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is a mountain massif near Lijiang

Jade Dragon Snow Mountain  is a mountain massif (also identified as a small mountain range) near Lijiang, in Yunnan province, southwestern China. The range is also known as Mount Yulong after the Chinese or Mount Satseto after the Naxi name. Its highest peak is named Shanzidou (扇子陡) (5,596 m or 18,360 ft). The view of the massif from the gardens at the Black Dragon Pool (Heilong Tan) in Lijiang is noted as one of China’s finest views, and part of Yulong Snow Mountain Scenic Area, a AAAAA-classified scenic area. 

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Jade Dragon Snow Mountain extends 35 km from south to north and 12 km from west to east, producing different altitudes in the mountain. Owing to conspicuous three-dimensional climate caused by different altitude, various trees and rare animals living in different climates can live together in this mountain It is estimated that half of Yunnan’s 13,000 plants species, 400 kinds of trees, dozens of flowers types, and one-third of China’s known species of medicinal herbs can be found here. When the spring comes, Jade Dragon Snow Mountain bursts into bloom when the camellias, rhododendrons, and azaleas start flowering. Herders take their cattle, goats, sheep, and yaks to graze on its slopes. In autumn, a portion of the pines turns amber yellow, while the leaves on deciduous trees present patches of orange, bright yellow, and scar.

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With the height of 5596 meters, the mountain is magnificent. Jade Dragon Snow Mountain is partly hidden and partly visible; sometimes under the cloudless sky, it is sparkling and crystal-clear; sometimes partly covered by cloud, the part above cloud is bright and clear while the part under cloud is totally green.

Barkhor is the road tramped out around Jokhang Temple through centuries

Barkhor is the road which pilgrims tramped out around Jokhang Temple through centuries. Buddhist pilgrims walk or progress by body-lengths along the street clockwise every day into deep night. They comprise most of Lhasa‘s floating population. Careful visitors may find there are 4 columns, on which colorful scripture streamers are hung flying over the street. All pilgrims walk outside of them to show respect. The custom started in Tubo period (633- 877).

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Over time side streets, lanes and alleys were added and the Barkhor Square. Today the pilgrims are still circumambulating the temple and the surrounding area has become a major tourist destination. This is the best place to see Lhasa’s traditional Tibetan architecture and the streets are lined by small shops selling Tibetan souvenirs such as prayer wheels, the tradition Tibetan long-sleeve ‘chuba’, Tibetan knives, jade jewellery, Buddhist statues and other religious artefacts. It is also the place to find ‘Thangka’ or Tibetan scroll paintings with themes of religion, history, literature, etc.

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Tips:
1. You should walk in a clockwise direction along the street.
2. It is better not stay too late there. Because there are many lanes there, it’s easy to lose your way in the evening.
3. Different vendors may sell the same thing at different price. So you’d better ask several vendors and get more information of the articles. Of course, you should also know how to bargain with them.
4. According to the tradition of Tibet, the vendor will give a favorable price to the first customer and the last one in a day.

The Forbidden City is in the heart of Beijing

In the heart of Beijing lies the largest palace in the world, The Forbidden City. For five hundred years, it served as the home of the almighty Emperors of China along with their wives, concubines, and entourages of tens of thousands of eunuchs and civil servants. But the Forbidden City is more than an imperial residence; it is the center of the universe, a unique complex of structures revealing a hierarchy of power both imperial and divine.

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Many of the largest building blocks of the Forbidden City came from a quarry about 43 miles (70 kilometers) away from the site. People in China had been using the spoked wheel since about 1500 B.C., so it was commonly thought that such colossal stones would’ve been transported on wheels, not by something like a sled.

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Over the hundreds of years since it was first built, most parts of the Forbidden City have been rebuilt many times. In modern times, The Forbidden City has been renamed the Palace Museum and is open to the general public.

The Forbidden City is also a treasure trove of movable cultural relics; it is the seat of the National Palace Museum. It has over 1.8 million movable cultural relics, including more than 1.68 million pieces of precious relics. In 2012, the highest single-day passenger flow volume of Forbidden City exceeded 180,000 people, and annual passenger flow volume exceed 15 million people. It can be regarded as the busiest museum in the world.

Xijiang Miao Villageis the largest Miao ethnic village all over the world

The Miao is an ethnic group known as keen on singing and dancing. Xijiang Miao Village is situated 37 kilometers northeast of Kaili, Guizhou Province. The village is known as the largest one in China, it is famous for profound ethnic culture, beautiful scenery and interesting tourism activities.

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Xijiang Miao Village is the largest Miao ethnic village all over the world. Anthropologists and experts on folklore consider this as the well-reserved region of ’primitive ecological environment’ of Miao Minority.
Xijiang Miao Village, also named ‘China’s Miao stockade village of one thousand households’, is supposed to be the largest Miao Village in China. A continuous row of houses spreads in line of the hilly area. These houses are unique and grand under sunshine and verdant trees.

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The village is located southeast of the town of Kaili (凯里) in southeastern Guizhou, deep in a valley. While we were driving on the narrow windy road in the middle of steep hills covered with forests. So much for the lost paradise and mysterious Miao villages hidden in the misty valley. Xijiang has become a major tourist attraction for those who want to experience the culture of the Miao.
Xijiang Miao Village celebrates many festivals, if tourists are lucky enough to get there during local festivals they could experience how magnificent it could be. Once come to Xijiang, tourists are invited to live like a Miao people, sing Miao songs, dances, wear Miao traditional costumes and silver ornaments.

Wuzhen Town has a history of more than 1,000 years

Wuzhen Town, in Tongxiang City, Zhejiang Province, has a history of more than 1,000 years. Of the ancient residential houses, workshops, and stores still standing on the banks of the rivers, 169,600 square meters, accounting for 81.54 percent of the town’s total floor area, have remained unchanged, lending an atmosphere of antiquity.

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Originally built in the central 19th century covering a total area of 650 square meters (7020 sq. ft), the former residence of Mao Dun, a well-known Chinese revolutionary writer, was the Mao family home for many generations and witnessed the growth of this great revolutionist and writer. In 1984, the former residence of Mao Dun was renovated and extended to cover a total area of 1,731.5 square meters (18,700 sq. ft) – it opened to the public one year later. In 1988, it was listed as one of the Key State Preserved Relic Units and in 1994 was renamed the Mao Dun Museum of the City of Tongxiang. The house has three exhibition areas: ‘Wuzhen, the Hometown of Mao Dun’, ‘the Way of Mao Dun’, and ‘the Former Residence of Mao Dun (renovated)’. The present Mao Dun Museum can be found to the east of the residence, which used to be Lizhi Shuyuan (Aspiration Academy) where Mao Dun spent his early school years.

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Traditional architecture, choice of three residences, boat trip to the house of your choice, three restaurants, bars, cafes, teahouses, lounge, conference rooms, spa, fitness club, business centre, Chinese medicinal courses, Tai Chi, pottery courses, silk workshop and ancient town tours.

The Forbidden City remains important in the civic scheme of Beijing

The Forbidden City, also called the Palace Museum, the Purple Forbidden City or Gugong Museum in Chinese, is located in the center of Beijing, China. The Forbidden City was built between 1406 and 1420 during the Ming Dynasty. It had been the imperial home of 24 emperors of the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. From their throne in the Forbidden City, they governed the country by holding court sessions with their ministers, issuing imperial edicts and initiating military expeditions.

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The Forbidden City remains important in the civic scheme of Beijing. The central north-south axis remains the central axis of Beijing. This axis extends to the south through Tiananmen gate to Tiananmen Square, the ceremonial centre of the People’s Republic of China, and on to Yongdingmen. To the north, it extends through Jingshan Hill to the Bell and Drum Towers. This axis is not exactly aligned north-south, but is tilted by slightly more than two degrees. Researchers now believe that the axis was designed in the Yuan Dynasty to be aligned with Xanadu, the other capital of their empire.

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The emperors of China lived in the Forbidden City, located in the heart of Beijing, for nearly 500 years, during China’s final two imperial dynasties, the Ming Dynasty and the Qing Dynasty. Vast numbers of huge stones were mined and transported there for its construction in the 15th and 16th centuries. The heaviest of these giant boulders, aptly named the Large Stone Carving, now weighs more than 220 tons (200 metric tons) but once weighed more than 330 tons (300 metric tons).

Lingyin Temple is one of the largest temples in China

Located 9 km away from the city west of West Lake, Lingyin Temple is one of the largest and most significant Chan (Zen) temples in China. Founded in 326 by an Indian monk named Huili, the temple originally had 72 halls and 18 pavilions, once housing 3000 monks. Unfortunately, the only buildings left today are the Celestial King’s Hall and the 33.6-meter-high Great Buddha Hall. Lingyin Temple is visited today by pilgrims from all over the world and local worshippers. Worship the Buddha and make a wish there. It is believed that Lingyin Temple is one of the top temples for making your wish come true.

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In front of the Lingyin Temple is the Hall of the Heavenly King; at the center of the hall sit statue of the Buddha of Maitreya with a smiling face and a bare belly. The 33.6 meters Hall of the Great Hero is a single-storied structure with three overlapping double layered eaves. After being completely repaired in 1954, the hall was changed to the present structure, made entirely of steel and concrete, and the great hall made spacious, imposing and grand. At the centre of the Hall of the Great Hero is a 19.6 meter’s high figure of magnificent Sakyamuni, founder of Buddhism. These palace, pavilion, stone pagoda, and figures of the Buddha in Ling Yin Temple have great significance in researching the history of Buddhism, the Chinese art of building, precious Chinese cultural relics.
Lingyin Temple is one of Hangzhou’s most popular attractions. It was the site of a temple during the Eastern Jin dynasty (317-420), and after its development during the Five Dynasties (907-960) it became a thriving monastery. Destroyed and rebuilt no fewer than 16 times since, the present structures are renovated Qing dynasty buildings.

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The two largest buildings are the Hall of the Heavenly Kings and the Hall of the Great Hero, the latter being one of the tallest single-story buildings in China and featuring a huge wooden statue of the Sakyamuni Buddha covered in gold leaf, behind which is a statue of the Guanyin, or Goddess of Mercy. The complex contains an important collection of Buddhist sutras.

Shaoshan Scenic Zone has 82 scenic spots in 7 scenic regions

Shaoshan, 100 km southwest of Changsha, is a mountain village with some fairly beautiful and birth place of the oft-lamented Mao Zedong. The village is adorned with propaganda, loudspeakers blare revolutionary songs and speeches to welcome approaching tourists. But aside from the novelty of being Mao’s hometown, Shaoshan is not much more than a rural Hunan village.

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Shaoshan Scenic Zone has 82 scenic spots in 7 scenic regions. At present, four scenic regions including Former Residence, Dishui Cave, Shao Peak and Qingxi have been developed. Former Residence and Dishui Cave have become National 4A Scenic Spots. To be precise, the most popular scenic spots are, the Former Residence of Mao Zedong, Mao Zedong Square, the Dishui Cave—”the mysterious West Cave” described as “such waters and mountains have fostered great persons”, Comrade Mao Zedong Memorial Museum—one of the 100 national excellent bases for patriotism education, Mao Zedong Relic Museum—a museum to show the great man’ s spirits, and carry out patriotism education and revolutionary traditions education, Research Center of Mao Zedong Thought, a professional library with memorial value—Mao Zedong Library, Stele cluster of Mao Zedong’ s poems “integrated with Mao Zedong’ s artistic essence and presented Mao Zedong’ s insights into literature”, Shao Peak—enjoys the reputation of “comparing with mountains around the world, it is the greatest mountain on the south of the Yangtze River” , Mao Zedong Memorial Garden—a place to integrate history and represent the great man’ s footprints. A large number of new and old outstanding scenic spots attract visitors with their own unique styles and rich cultural legacy, thus Shaoshan becomes a sacred place of red tourism.

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If you are in Shaoshan, there is one thing that you should not miss. That is Braised Pork of Mao Family. It is said that Chairman Mao thought highly of it after having a taste. The authentic restaurant of Mao Family in Shaoshan is particular about the cooking methods which are quite complicated. This dish is a kind of stimulation to your eyes and gustatory sense. It looks golden and shining; it tastes fat but not greasy.