Sacred Way

The Sacred Way
Solemn Sacred Way
 Pictures of Sacred Way
In the front part of the imperial necropolises, there usually is a Sacred Way (or Divine Road) which means the road leading to heaven. The Emperor, known as the Son of the Heaven, who came from Heaven to his country through the Sacred Way, also deservedly would return to Heaven through this road.

The Sacred Way is often lined with stone statues which are important decorations of the mausoleum. These statues are usually 12 human figures (including the general, civil officials and meritorious officials) and 24 animals which are lion, camel, elephant, xiezhi (a mythological unicorn), qilin (one of the four "divine animals, the other three are dragon, phoenix and tortoise), and horse. There are 4 of each of these animals: two standing and two squatting with different meanings. Lion symbolizes awesome solemnity because of their ferocity. Camel and elephant are meant to suggest the vastness of the territory controlled by the court, because they are dependable transport in desert and tropics. Xiezhi was put there to keep evil spirits away, because it was believed to possess the sixth sense to tell right and wrong. If two men fight, a xiezhi would gore the wicked one. Qilin, an auspicious symbol, was placed on two sides. Horse, as the emperor's mount, is absolutely indispensable. It is said that these animals is supposed to change guard at midnight.
Our Group Tour to the Sacred Way
Our Group to Ming Tombs
Visitors on Sacred Way
Visitors on the Sacred Way
Among the many Sacred Ways, the one of Ming Tombs' is best preserved and complete. The Sacred Way starts with a huge stone memorial archway lying at the front of the area. Constructed in 1540, during the Ming Dynasty, this archway is the earliest and biggest stone archway existing in China today. Farther in, the Shengong Shengde Stele Pavilion can be seen. Inside it, there lies a 50-ton tortoise carrying a stone tablet. A white marble Huabiao (ornamental pillar) is positioned at each corner of the stele pavilion. At the top of each is stationed a mythical beast facing either inward or outward, expressing hope that the emperor will neither cling to the palace nor forget to return to the Palace to handle state affairs. Then come two Roof Pillars on each side of the road, whose surfaces are carved with the cloud design, and tops are shaped like a rounded cylinder. After the 18 pairs of stone statues which are all sculpted from whole stones, and larger than life size, comes the Dragon and Phoenix Gate.

The Sacred Way was originally built to lead to the Changling mausoleum. Afterwards, twelve more mausoleums were built. It is a ten-minute bus ride from this place to Changling..

How to get to Sacred Way of Ming Tombs in Beijing

1. Take bus 872 from Deshengmen and get off at Nanxin Village Station.
2. Take bus 345 Express or 886 from Deshengmen West Station, get off at Changping Dongguan Station, and then take bus 314 to get off at Nanxin Village Station.
3. Take Subway Changping Line to Changping Dongguan Station, and then transfer to bus 314 to Nanxin Village Station.
Beijing Bus / Subway Search
Entrance Fee
April to October: CNY 30
November to March: CNY 20
Note: Free for children under 1.2 meters (3.9 feet).
Opening Hours
April to October: 08:00 - 17:30
November to March: 08:30 - 17:00

Surrounding Scenic Spots: Badaling Great Wall   Ming Tombs
- Last updated on May. 11, 2023 by Brenda Lian -
Questions & Answers on Sacred Way
Asked by YESZONE | Apr. 03, 2018 21:17Reply
How to go to Sacred Way from Mutianyu Great Wall? Are there similar places to see near Mutianyu?
Are there similar places to see near Mutianyu if the Sacred way is too far?
We travel from 5th to 8th April 2018.

Thank you.
Answers (2)
Answered by Tiana from FRANCE | Apr. 03, 2018 22:13

You need to take bus H23 to Yujiayuan and transfer to bus H45 to Beishaowa. Then transfer to bus Chang 67 to Nanxincun and walk north for 3 minutes to the sacred way. It takes around 2.5h.
Sorry to tell you no similar places are near the great wall.
Answered by YESZONE | Apr. 04, 2018 02:57

Thank you for the reply!
Asked by Abby from PHILIPPINES | Feb. 21, 2016 07:29Reply
How to go to Sacred Way from Beijing Mutianyu Great Wall?
Answers (2)
Answered by Abbey from USA | Feb. 22, 2016 03:59

There is no direct travel mode, and you are suggested to hire a car to the Sacred Way, which may cost you CNY150-160 around. Wanting a cheaper way, you can carpool the car with other tourists who share the same destinations with you.
Answered by Lucy from USA | Feb. 22, 2016 04:02

Well, it's a lot of transfers. You may take bus h23, h35, or h36 from Mutianyu Roundabout Station to Huairou North Avenue. Next, change to bus line 916 Express to Taiyanggong Bridge Station. Then, change to metro line 13 from Guangximen to Xierqi Station. Afterwards, transfer to metro Changping line to Ming Tombs Station. Take a shuttle bus to the place.
Actually, it will be more convenient to travel from Badaling to Ming Tombs. There are direct buses 879 running between them.
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