Ming Tombs, Beijing

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  • Ming Tombs
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  • Ming Tombs
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  • Mairo21's Profile Photo

    Chang Ling

    by Mairo21 Updated Oct 25, 2005

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    Statue ot third Ming emperor
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    Open: 8am-5pm daily
    The resting place for 13 of the 16 Ming emperors. The 1st, 2nd, and 7th emperors are buried in different locations.This site was chosen for its location and its auspicious feng shui alignment. The tombs are protected on 3 sides due to mountain range that lies to the North. detering any evil spirits thought to be brought along the north wind. Chang Ling is the first tomb to be built. It took 2 years for renovation, and was opened in 1958. The emperor, his wife, and concubines are still thought to be buried behind the Spirit Tower under a huge earthen mound.

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    The Sacred Road.

    by kdoc13 Written May 12, 2004

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    The Sacred Road

    As you are making your way to and from the Ming Tombs, don't miss the heavenly road. Many of the guided tours will not take you there, or if they do there is an extra charge. It is well worth the extra bicks to see it though.

    The road itself forms a perfectly straight line that runs from the Ming Tombs in the north, down through the heavenly road through the forbidden city (Still in a straight line), through Tienanmen, and then continuing the striaght line to the temple of heaven.

    The part of the road you want to focus on, for the purposes of this review, is near the ming tombs. The road contains many beautifully carved statues and gardens. The picture on the main Beijing page with the girl with the umberlla was taken here, as is the picture on this page.

    The statues are cool! There is one of a tax collector, he is holding a tablet with the names of actual people who were delinquent in their taxes back hundreds of years ago! Each statue is amazing in its size and detail should not be missed.

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    Ming Tombs - wonderful approach

    by SLLiew Written Aug 16, 2006

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    I am impressed by the statues of animals and mythical animals leading to the Ming Tombs. However, it is disappointing that most tombs are empty.

    Nonetheless, it a trip worth the while. Usually it is part of a stop-over along the way to the Great Wall of China. And so great to stretch the legs if the weather is fine.

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    Where's the body?

    by amambaw Written Oct 15, 2004

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    Ming Tombs

    The Ming Tombs are scattered all over a valley to the West of Beijing. My understanding is that there are 13 in all - one for each of the emperors of the Ming Dynasty. Only 3 are open to the public so far. I was told that this is because the others are still being studied.

    The Tomb we visited is the largest of the 13, although I'm ashamed to admit I don't remember the name of the emporer entombed there.

    This is a wonderful site for many reasons. First, it is outside of Beijing, so you get a chance to get out of the city and see a bit of the countryside. Second, it is relatively close to the Great Wall, so you can see both in one day. Third, although it is on the small size, site wise, there are some very neat things to see: a giant statue of the emperor, facsimiles of many recovered relics from the tomb, and fantastic trees and flowers. It all adds up to a great site. We only spent about 45 mins here, but I probably wouldn't have spent much more on my own, maybe an hour or two.

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    Da Hong Men

    by Luchonda Updated Oct 26, 2003

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    Da Hong Men

    The great red entrance - The holy lane of animals and guardians leading and protecting the Ming Graves.
    The lane is about 6.4 km long and many statues of animals and guardians are shown.
    Emperors just passed away, had to pass the red portal where you can see an enormous sculpture of a turtle - symbol of a long life.

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    The Ming Tombs

    by kdoc13 Written May 12, 2004

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    The Soul Tower at the Ming Tombs.

    The Ming Tombs are pretty impressive, even though only one of the 13 has been excavated. The main one has many interesting buildings, including the Soul Tower (pictured here.)

    The beauty of the buildings, and the artifacts are pretty amazing, since there is nothing like them in the west. Take some extra time to walk around the mound and get a good look at the site, also a great view of the area is available from the Soul Tower.

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    • Archeology
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    Ming Tombs

    by herzog63 Updated Sep 24, 2003

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    Ming Tomb Ticket

    I visited the Ming Tombs while on the local tour. Either there wasn't much to see or the buildings where closed at the time. But I didn't come away from the Ming Tombs thinking Wow! that was nice. I had heard about the Ming Tombs all of my life so I thought they were going to be a little more exciting. A ticket to the grounds was about US$.10 cents. (Circa 1987) I still have my ticket glued into my journal.

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    Ming Tombs

    by dragontml Written Dec 10, 2003

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    During the Ming Dynasty established by Han Chinese coming from an agricultural society in central China, where people believed the existence of an after-world, where the dead "lived" a life similar to that of the living. Ming emperors, therefore, have grand mausoleums built for themselves.

    Known for its fine porcelains, a Chinese invention, the Ming era is also one of important deeds. The emperors built the Imperial Palace in Peking, reconstructed and extended the Great Wall, and dispatched sea-going vessels to explore Southeast Asia and the Red Sea. Ming society became a sophisticated urban and commercial one, dominated by highly cultivated literati and prosperous merchants.

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    Something you cannot miss

    by echowangxian Updated Jul 12, 2009

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    Stone Statues & Animals
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    The General Sacred Way\ Dingling Underground Palace\ Changling Ling'en Dian which is made of Nanmu

    It was so quite when I walking on the Sacred Way, touching those vivid stone statues, imaging how powerful of the Emperors used to be. but now the owners all gone for handreds years, only those stone statues left...

    The Underground Palace of Dingling is the only one of the Ming tombs excavated so far. More than 3,000 pieces of cultural relics were unearthed from Dingling. tourist can see some of them in Dingling Museum, i was totally crazy for those real Gold ingot\ Gold crown\ Jade belt\ Jade cup\ Jade bowl...b4 can only see them on TV series.

    the last thing is the Ling'en Dian of Changling, it made of Nanmu (a kind of rare hard wood). and its the only remains of the hall-and-gate structures among the Ming Mausoleums, and deseve to be the treasure of ancient Chinese architecture. As i know how rare Nanmu is, and how expensive are they in ancient time, when i saw the big hall full of Nanmu, i even forgot to close my mouth. it is amazing hall!

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    Ming Tombs (Changling)

    by ValbyDK Updated Apr 26, 2010

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    Ming Tombs
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    The Ming Tombs are located 50km northwest of Beijing and are the final resting-place for 13 of the 16 Ming Emperors (1368 - 1644). The site of the Ming Tombs was carefully chosen according to Feng Shui principles, and the area of the foot of the JunDu Mountains – with quiet valleys and calm waters – was the perfect place to protect the tombs against bad spirits.

    I visited the Ming Tombs at Changling on a guided tour booked through my hotel in Beijing, but the ‘Spirit Way’ was NOT included in the guided tour! Check before you book a day trip from Beijing! Instead our tour guide showed us around at the Changling tombs. The Hall of Eminent Favour with a large statue of Emperor Yongle and an exhibition of artefacts recovered from the tombs, the beautiful view of the surrounding mountains and valleys, and a few other sights - but the Ming Tombs at Changling was not one of my favourites. I think the Forbidden City and the Temple of Heaven are both much more impressive and interesting!

    A couple of stories…
    We passed some old wells, and the guide told us a rather creepy story… The Emperor was married to the Empress, but he also had many concubines. When the Emperor died, some of his concubines must follow him into the afterlife! Therefore the 'lucky' ladies were taken to the tomb and hung. The bodies of the concubines were buried in the wells - not exactly the same fabulous tomb as the Emperor's grave!
    When you enter the Ming Tombs, it is possible to go through a small gate. If you do so, a myth says that your soul ascend to heaven. You must pass through the same gate again when exiting, this time jumping and yelling : 'I'm back' (in any language)... Otherwise your soul will stay in heaven...

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    Great Red Gate at the Ming Tombs

    by pmarshuk Written May 18, 2003

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    There are 13 tombs of Ming emperors at Shisanling 50 km north of Beijing and 24km from the Great Wall. The visit here is usually done together with the visit to the Wall. Evidently the site fits all the rules of Feng Shui.After entering through a marble portico you approach the Great Red Gate.

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    Spirit Way at the Ming Tombs

    by pmarshuk Updated Jan 30, 2004

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    The Sacred Way inside the gate of the Ming Tomb is lined with 18 pairs of stone human figures and animals. These include four each of three types of officials: civil, military and meritorious officials, symbolizing those who assisted the emperor in the administration of the state, plus four each of six types of animals: lion, griffin, camel, elephant, unicorn and horse. These represent different animals found in the various parts of the Ming Empire.

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    Ming Tombs

    by yellowbell Updated Nov 13, 2005

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    Soul Tower - Ming Tomb with my parents

    We visited Ming Tombs after our exhausting morning excursion to the Great Wall.

    Ming Tombs is the general name given to mausoleums of the 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty. I only got to visit Changling, the tomb of emperor Zhudi and his empresses. On exhibit are golden cups, hairpins with various gemstones, headress with finely woven gold threads and silk robes.

    Before approaching the Soul Tower, there was an arch called the Ghost Gate that our tour guide said we should not pass. I don't want to be unlucky so we just went around it. For good views of the mountains and plains of Changping, have your picture taken while on top of the Soul Tower.

    Underground Dingling Palace requires another 200 yuan and might be too musty for me to visit.

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    Imperial Tombs

    by muratkorman Written Apr 8, 2010

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    Ming Tombs lie in a broad valley about 50 kilometers northwest from Beijing City. The name itself exactly implies what it is inside. It consists of thirteen emperor mausoleums of the Ming Dynasty from 1368 to 1644. The whole mausoleums group totally covers an area of 40 square kilometers, which had took up to more than 200 years to complete. Although there are many mausoleums in Ming Tombs, only two of them—Changling and Dingling are open to public.
    Changling is the first mausoleum on Ming Tombs and also the most magnificent part of the tombs, which covers an area of about 10 hectares with the other 12 tombs built around. It is the mausoleum of Emperor ZhuDi and Empress Xu. Changling is the biggest and most completed preserved tomb in Ming Tombs.
    To the northeast part of Changling situated Dingling on the foot of DaYu Hill, where buried the thirteenth emperor of Ming Dynasty WanLi and his two empresses. In 1583, Emperor WanLi took the chance of paying respect to the ancestors, inspected the Mausoleum Area. There he made his final decision to build tomb here and started the project in the following years.
    You can spend a whole day visiting the tombs or you can join a tour which also stops by at the tombs. That will be brief and shorter, but less boring.

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    2 Camino Sagrado/Sacred Path Animales/Animals

    by elpariente Written Mar 21, 2008

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    Xiezhi
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    Los 12 pares de esculturas de animales reales y míticos se distribuyen a ambos lados del camino dos en actitud de estar en acción , de pie y dos en estado de reposo , postradas/tumbadas .
    Los animales protegerán a los emperadores en el otro mundo
    Animales reales :
    - León
    - Elefante
    - Camello
    - Caballo
    Animales míticos :
    - Xiezhi : Es una cabra divina que después de ver una pelea alza su cuerno para tocar al malo y es tan justo que no se desvía de sus principios ni ante el emperador
    - Quilin : tiene cuerpo de león, piel de pez y cuernos de ciervo y es un buen presagio que trae prosperidad



    The 12 pairs of sculptures of real and mythical animals are distributed on both sides of the road two in attitude to be in action, standing and two in resting position , crouch or prone .
    This animals protect the emperors in the other world
    Real Animals :
    -- Lion
    -- Elephant
    -- Camel
    -- Horse
    Mythical Animals :
    -- Xiezhi : It is a divine goat that after seeing a fight hike his horn to touch the bad and it is so fair that does not deviate from their principles even in front of the emperor
    -- Quilin: It has body lion, fish skin and horns of deer and is a good omen that brings prosperity

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