Chinese Summer Palace

Posted by Vito Johansson on August 24, 2015

The Summer Palace, also known as "Gardens of Nurtured Harmony", is a palace in Beijing, China. The Summer Palace is mainly dominated by Longevity Hill and theKunming Lake. It covers an expanse of 2.9 square kilometers, three quarters of which is water.

Longevity Hill is about 60 meters (200 feet) high and houses many buildings positioned in sequence. The front hill is rich in the splendid halls and pavilions, while the back hill, in sharp contrast, is quiet with natural beauty.

The central Kunming Lake covering 2.2 square kilometers was entirely man made and the excavated soil was used to build Longevity Hill. In the Summer Palace, one finds a variety of palaces, gardens, and other classical-style architectural structures.

In December 1998, UNESCO included the Summer Palace on its World Heritage List. It declared the Summer Palace "a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design. The natural landscape of hills and open water is combined with artificial features such as pavilions, halls, palaces, temples and bridges to form a harmonious ensemble of outstanding aesthetic value." It is a popular tourist destination but also serves as a recreational park.

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