Huaqing Palace

30km east of Xian and beside Terracotta Army, Huaqing Palace Scenic Area features Imperial Pools of the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907), Pear Garden, Frost Flying Hall, Nine-Dragon Lake, Five-Room Building and Mount Li. It's famous for the romantic love story of Tang Emperor Xuanzong and his concubine Yang Yuhuan.
 
It's said that King You first built a palace during Western Zhou Dynasty (1046BC - 771BC) at the foot of Mount Li. In later dynasties, additions to the palace had been made. During his reign, the Emperor Xuanzong spent dizzying amounts of his funds to expand it to a luxurious palace named Huaqing Hot Springs or Huaqing Palace.
 

Imperial Pools of the Tang Dynasty

Inside Huaqing Palace, there are still five hot springs remained: the Lotus Pool, Haitang Pool, Star Pool, Shangshi Pool, and the Prince Pool. The Lotus Pool was Emperor Xuanzong's private bathing pool, which looks like a lotus. Haitang Pool, also named Guifei Pool, is like a Chinese crabapple and for Yang Yuhuan. Star Pool was said to have no roof, so one can bath there at night, enjoying the whole stars. Shangshi Pool was for the officials, and Prince Pool, of course, for the Prince.
 

Pear Garden & Frost Flying Hall

The Pear Garden in Huaqing Palace is the most famous imperial theater in China. In the Garden, Emperor Xuanzong and his concubine Yang Yuhuan created many tunes and dances. However, the most famous one, Ni Shang Yu Yi Qu has been long-lost.

West of the Pear Garden stands Frost Flying Hall, aka Feishuang Hall in Chinese, the bedroom palace of Emperor Xuanzong. The name, Frost Flying, comes from an interesting story. It’s said that the whole hall is quite warm even in winter due to the hot springs. When the snow fell down upon it, all snow turned into frost at once.
Nine-Dragon Lake in Huaqingchi
Nine-Dragon Lake
Xian Huaqing Hot Springs, Shaanxi
Overlook of Huaqing Palace

Nine-Dragon Lake

In the south of the Pear Garden and Frost Flying Hall lies the Nine-Dragon Lake, covering about 530 square meters (634 square yards). The lake is divided into two parts, which are connected by the long Nine-Dragon Bridge. Actually, there are only eight dragon stone carvings on the bridge. The ninth is carved under a pavilion by the lake.
 

Five-Room Building

Another famous building in Huaqing Palace is the Five-Room Building. It was the shelter of Empress Dowager Cixi after the Eight-Power Allied Force captured Beijing in 1900, and was also the temporary residence of Chiang Kai-shek, the leader of the Chinese Nationalist Party during the world-famous Xian Incident in Dec. 12th 1936. On that day, it was at this place that Chiang was kidnapped by two generals and was forced to unite all Chinese people to fight against enemies.
 

Mount Li

As part of Huaqing Palace Scenic Area, Mount Li is also famous. On the mountain stands the famous Beacon Tower of Western Zhou Dynasty, which was used as a fortification. Besides, you can also pay a visit to Bingjian Pavilion, which is said to be the place where Chiang Kai-shek was caught by his two generals.
Bingjian Pavilion on Mt. Lishan
Bingjian Pavilion on Mount Li
Tang-Dynasty Dance Show
Tang-Dynasty Dance Show

How to get to Huaqing Palace

From Xian:
1. Xian Railway Station: Take Tourist bus 5 (306)/ 914/ 915 directly to Huaqingchi Station. It takes about 1 hour.
2. South Gate or West Gate of Tang Paradise: Take bus 307 to Huaqingchi Station.
3. Xian North Railway Station: Take your train ticket on the arrival day to take the free shuttle bus to any attraction of Lintong. The bus also takes about 1 hour.
Notice that you need to go to Tourist Service Center to get a boarding pass/card with your train ticket, and the center is on the underground of North Station.

From Lintong:
Take bus 101 from Lintong Bus Station to Huaqingchi.
 Xian Bus / Metro Search
 
Huaqing Palace Admission Fee (including Mount Li) Mar. – Nov.: CNY150;
Dec. – Feb.: CNY120;
Free for children under 1.2m (3.9ft)
Opening Hours Mar. – Nov.: 7:00 – 19:00;
Dec. – Feb.: 7:30 – 18:00.
 

Performances in Huaqing Palace

There are two performances in Hauqing Palace now. One is the Song of Everlasting Sorrow, telling the romantic stories of Emperor Xuanzong and Yang Yuhuan. The other is 12.12 Xian Incident, showing more details of that famous incident. 
 
The Song of Everlasting Sorrow 12.12 Xian Incident
Ticket Fee Eastern and western areas: CNY 238/268;
Central area: CNY 298;
VIP area: CNY 988/888/588;
CNY169;
Free for children under 1.3 meters (4.3 feet) not occupying a seat.
Show Time Thursday to Saturday: 20:10 – 21:20; 21:40 – 22:50.
Sunday to Wednesday: 20:30 – 21:40

Note:
1. Only available from Apr. to Oct.
2. The performance might be canceled due to extreme weather. Please refer to the latest notice inside the scenic area.
11:00 – 12:00;
15:00 – 16:00.
 
 

Tip:

Tourists are not allowed to use hot springs in this scenic area. If you really want to have such an experience, many hotels near the scenic area welcome you all year around. They have hot springs for you to enjoy. With an even temperature of 43°C (109°F), the ever-flowing water here contains minerals and organic materials that have therapeutic effects on the skin. You can experience the same comfort as Emperor Xuanzong or Yang Yuhuan did.
 Tips on Hot Spring for your reference

 Suggested Tour Itinerary:
Two-day Huaqing Palace & Terracotta Army: Two-day trip to Banpo Musuem, Huaqing Palace, Mount Li, Terra-Cotta Warriors Museum.
More Xian Tours

 How to get to the surrounding scenic spots
The Museum of Qin Terracotta Warriors and Horses: Take bus 307, 914 or Tourism Bus 5 (306) to Bingmayong Station.
Mount Li: Visitors can find the entrance of the Mount Li from the back door of the Huaqing Hot Springs.

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