Culture Journey in Beijing







Contributed By Mandy Lee
 - Culture Journey in Beijing
Mystery of Chinese Royal architecture
With vivid characteristics, Chinese royal buildings, especially the most popular tourist attractions in Beijing, are mysterious to today’s people. Nearly every small part of the architecture is different and has some symbolic value! Here we take the Forbidden City as an example and collect something interesting about this imperial palace. If explore it without a guide, you will never know the secrets. Let’s feel it more than just watch it!

The Ornamental Pillars (Hua Biao)
A pair of marble pillars, decorated with exquisite clouds and entwined dragons carvings, can be often found in front of most large royal complexes. They were originally made of wood and used to solicit public opinions from the people. They were also treated as landmarks or road signs. But later they were only used to decorate important buildings.
The most famous Huabiaos are located at Tiananmen, two in front of the gate of Tiananmen and two behind the gate. On top of the Huabiaos, there sits a mythical animal called Hou. It is believed that the positioning of the Hous' heads was a reminder to the emperor of the hopes of the people. The two behind the gate looking at the palace (north) mean expecting the emperor to go out often and to understand the life of the people better. The two in front facing south express longing for the emperor's return to run state affairs when he was absent from the palace for too long.

Stone/Bronze Lions
Lion is a special animal to Chinese people. A pair of stone or bronze lions, a male and a female, can often be seen in front of the gates of traditional buildings. The male lion is on the left with his right paw resting on a ball, and the female on the right with her left paw fondling a cub.

Marble Terrace
Most of Chinese ancient royal buildings stand on marble terrace. The white marble terrace can not only support and magnify the single building on it, but also protect the wood structure from dampness. It also has a deeper meaning. It reflects the rank of the building.

Grand Roof
Roofs are very important to Chinese architecture. Palaces had particularly impressive elaborate roofs. The distinctive roof of Chinese architecture involves a great deal of symbolism. Symbolism is present in the colors and tiers of the eaves, roofing materials and roof top decorations.
Yellow, regarded as an auspicious color, was exclusively used by the imperial families of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Imperial roofs are certainly brilliant gold or imperial yellow.

Tunjishou (the ridge-devouring beast)
Watch carefully, you will find the ridges of each roof are topped with figures of mythical creatures. Fierce and formidable, it looks as if it were ready to devour the whole ridge; so it is also known as tunjishou or the ridge-devouring beast.
What were they used for? For decorative purposes only? According to architects, these strange-looking creatures can prevent the roof from sliding. Moreover, the number and the size of the creatures on the eaves indicate the importance of the building. When visiting the royal palace, it can be very interesting to count the animals on the eaves and get to know exactly how important the building was.

Tianhe Dian
Now, it is very easy to figure out that the Hall of Taihe Dian is the main hall of the Forbidden City. First, the building is raised on a triple marble terrace, 8 m (26 ft) high, enclosed by marble balustrades, whilst those around the same courtyard were kept lower so as to set off the magnificence of the hall. Second, it has a roof with double eaves and is decorated with carved dragons and phoenixes, most of which are gilded. Third, don’t forget the little mythical creatures on the eave. There are 12 in total, the most of all! The Hall of Taihe Dian was the place where emperors in the Ming and Qing dynasties held.

Colors in the Forbidden City
The Forbidden City is a complex painted in just two colors, yellow and red, which can be seen throughout the city. The color red signifies happiness and yellow signifies earth. In ancient China, the color yellow in particular, was most extensively and exclusively used by the emperors, who were regarded as the Sons of Heaven and the supreme rulers of humanity. Therefore, yellow became the dominant color in the Forbidden City. Roofs are built with yellow glazed tiles; decorations in the palace are painted yellow; even the bricks on the ground are made yellow by a special process.

There is much more in the Forbidden City waiting for you to discover. Why is it that no trees in the grand courtyard of the Hall of Taihe Dian.? Hundreds of gilt bronze vats are scattered in the Forbidden City. What were they used for? Only when you get there can you reveal its mysterious veil!







Similar Listings You May Be Interested In

Accommodations in China | View More...

Far East Youth Hostel
From USD $
32
per Night

Far East Youth Hostel
Beijing, China Youth Hostels - Beijing Far East International Youth Hostel, accepted as the best hostel in Beijing, is situated in a preserved and protected Hutong area, typical local residency neighborhood....

Hutong Ren Culture hotel
From USD $
60
per Night

Hutong Ren Culture hotel
Beijing, China Hotels & Resorts - Living in this hostel can help you get a better understanding of Beijing's local life. You could never get the same feeling and traveling experience from any other places. Wandering in the long and puzzling hutong, smiling to lov.ely local neighbors...

Beijing Drum Tower Youth Hostel
From USD $
5
per Night/Room

Beijing Drum Tower Youth Hostel
Beijing, China Youth Hostels - Drum Tower Youth Hostel became the member of the international youth hostel association in 2006. The hostel already have 27 rooms with private facilities and 23 dorm rooms with share facilities....


Activities, Adventures & Tours in Beijing | View More...

Small Group Highlight of Great Wall Hiking (1 day)
From USD $
122
per Person

Small Group Highlight of Great Wall Hiking (1 day)
Beijing, China Hiking & Trekking - As the most popular hiking trip of Great Wall around Beijing, it will show you both Simatai and Jinshanling sections of the wall within 3 hours. You will have chance to meet local farmer friends and try local home-made food....

Small Group Discovery Great Wall Hiking (3 days)
From USD $
395
per Person

Small Group Discovery Great Wall Hiking (3 days)
Beijing, China Hiking & Trekking - Wild wall at Jiankou to Mutianyu displays the ruined and original condition of the wall. Gubeikou, Jinshanling and Simatai vary from tower to tower. Immerse yourself in the rural life and you will be rewarded by your effort and courage on Great Wall....

Small Group Magic Great Wall Hiking (2 days)
From USD $
270
per Person

Small Group Magic Great Wall Hiking (2 days)
Beijing, China Hiking & Trekking - This two-day hiking provides you with many original towers and challenge in certain sections. Jiankou to Mutianyu will challenge your ambition on the wild wall, and Jinshanling to Simatai West will show you the splendid construction of the wall....


Personal Growth in China | View More...

Teach and Travel Program in China
From USD $
850
per Person

Teach and Travel Program in China
Beijing, China Cultural Experience - The Teach and Travel Program (TTP) is an international cultural exchange program offering a unique opportunity for ambitious and adventurous people to experience the real China....

Volunteer and Vacation at the Same Time!

Volunteer and Vacation at the Same Time!
Beijing, China Volunteer Vacations - At Global Reach Institute, we intertwine humanitarian activities and community service with cultural tours and people to people interactions. We build bridges between nations, one person at a time....

Cultural Education/ Volunteer Tours
From USD $
2,195
per Person

Cultural Education/ Volunteer Tours
Beijing, China Volunteer Vacations - Educational Cultural/ VolunteeTours of China meant for the discerning traveller who wishes to meet the people, visit villages,schools, orphanages, homes, farms, as well as learn about the history, politics, and religions that create the culture......


Tours in China | View More...

Panorama of China - Beijing/Xi'an/Suzhou/Shanghai
From USD $
1,299
per Person

Panorama of China - Beijing/Xi'an/Suzhou/Shanghai
Beijing, China Sight-Seeing Tours - Did you know that the Great Wall was the only human building seen by the astronaut on the moon? Do not wait to go on the moon to see the Great Wall and come with us in China ! Great Wall is not the only marvel of China. Lets discover : Beij...


Browse 3177 Other Listings in China





Advertise Your Accommodation or Travel Services


Create A ListingGreat Vacations & Exciting Destinations Listing
Add a full-page listing promoting your accommodations, tours or travel services to customers on our network of travel sites. Your listing page can have up to 26 images, unlimited text, interactive map, availability calendar, ecards, photo-gallery and more.
Rates From US $17 Per Month    » View Details

Search Vacation Ideas
Current Search






Disclaimer: Information provided through RealAdventures website, newsletters, emails or other services has been provided directly by the companies and/or individuals owning or offering the products/services. RealAdventures does not guarantee or warranty the accuracy of the information contained herein. It is the sole responsibility of the user to ensure the accuracy and clarity of any posted material and to determine the suitability of any service for their particular needs or requirements. Likewise, it is the responsibility of advertisers to determine the suitability and credit worthiness of potential customers prior to any transaction.


Listing # RA-1156326