Zhongshan Park

Beijing Zhongshan Park, an ancient, elegant and solemn park, is located to the northwest of Tiananmen Square and adjacent to the Forbidden City. Originally it was a site of imperial sacrifices, named the Altar of Land and Grain (Shejitan) in the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) Dynasties. In 1914 it was named Central Park. Dr. Sun Yat-sen (Sun Zhongshan), China's first revolutionary leader bringing about the first republic in 1911, was temporarily placed in the park after his death. To memorize this great man, the site was renamed Zhongshan Park in 1928.

Covering an area of 260,700 square yards (218,000 square meters), Zhongshan Park is a beautiful environment, with a strong and influential culture. Entering from the south gate and passing by the magnificent Peace Safeguarding Arch erected during wartime, you will see a solemn bronze statue of Dr. Sun Yat-sen with a height of 11 feet (3.4 meters).

Altar of Land and Grain (Shejitan)

Going forward to the center of the park you can see the main structure, the ancient Altar of Land and Grain (Shejitan). It was first built as a temple in the Tang Dynasty (618-907) and rebuilt as Xingguo Temple by the Liao (907-1125) and Yuan (1271-1368) Dynasties. In 1421 it was reconstructed as the Altar of Land and Grain (Shejitan) by Emperor Zhu Di of the Ming Dynasty. It is a three-level square terrace built of white marble. The upper platform of the altar is paved by soil in five colors, so it is also called the Five-Color Soil Altar. It is a symbol of both imperial power and good harvests.

To the southwest of the altar are the Imperial Storehouse and the Imperial Kitchen. The former is used to place articles related to sacrifices, such as shrines, memorial tablets for gods, sacrificial utensils and so on. The latter is a place to prepare offerings and to store kitchen ware. Not far from the Imperial Storehouse and Kitchen, the Butchering Pavilion is also available for butchering animals for sacrifices.

Zhongshan Hall

Passing through the Altar of Land and Grain (Shejitan) and heading due north, tourists come to Zhongshan Hall, which was originally named the Worship Hall, where emperors worshiped, when there is bad weather. The coffin of Dr. Sun Yat-sen was once placed there, which is why it is now called Zhongshan Hall. It is believed to be the most intact building of the Ming Dynasty.

Forbidden City Concert Hall

To the southeast of Zhongshan Hall lies the Forbidden City Concert Hall. It was built in 1942 and now covers an area of more than 4,783 square yards (4,000 square meters). It is a modern multi-functional and international level theater with both Chinese and Western characteristics. It is also an ideal place to appreciate classical music.

Other Scenic Spots

The park also houses other beautiful spots, which create a quiet and beautiful environment. The attractive Evergreen Garden accommodates rockeries, flowerbeds, potted landscapes etc. Tanghua Greenhouse is a hothouse for cultivating flowers, where various rare flowers can be seen. Huifang Garden provides a place for an orchid fair, which attracts many tourists.

There are ancient cypresses flourishing in the park, most of which were planted in the Ming Dynasty. Seven of the cypresses are said to have been planted during the Liao Dynasty. They have a history of more than 1,000 years. Tall and straight, they can almost not be embraced by three or four people. There is also an amazing sight of a couple tree: a locust tree and a cypress entwined with luxuriant foliage.

Transportation

1. Take subway line 1 and get off at the Tiananmen West Station. Walk one minute east to the south of the park.
2. Take bus line 1, 5, 52, 99 or tour bus line 1 and get off at the Tiananmen West Station. Walk one minute east to the south gate of the park.
3. Take bus line 5 (north to south) and get off at Xihuamen Station. Walk five minutes south to the west gate of the park.
 Beijing Bus / Subway Search
Admission Fee CNY 3
A combined ticket for Tanghua Greenhouse and Huifang Garden: CNY 5
During the Tulip Fair ( late March to mid-May) CNY 10
Children who are under 6 years old or 3.9 feet (1.2 meters) can get free tickets.
Children from 6 to 18 years old can enjoy half price tickets.
Opening Hours April to May & September to October : 6:00 – 21:00; last ticket is available at 20:00
June to August : 6:00 – 22: 00; last ticket is available at 21:00
November to March: 6:30 – 20:00 ; last ticket is available at 19:00
Tanghua Greenhouse, Huifang Garden and Exhibition Hall: 9:00 – 17:00

Recreation Facilities

Name Price
Bumper Car CNY 10/3min
Children’s Playground CNY 20 for children; CNY 10 for adults
Magic Mirror CNY 2
Tanghua Greenhouse CNY 2
Huifang Garden CNY 3
Pleasure Boat Pedalo for 4 people CNY 60/hour
Battery Boat for 4 people CNY 80/hour
Battery Boat for 6 people CNY 100/hour

 Nearby Attractions:
 Beijing Working People's Cultural Palace, symmetrically opposite Zhongshan Park: grand buildings and pretty gardens
 Tiananmen Square, the heartland of Beijing: the largest central square in the world

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