The main area of this temple is called the Hall of Prayer for good harvest. Dominated by a high building atop a round staircase, this wide temple was built in the 15th century and carefully restored for the Olympic games.
All in wood (except the marble staircase), and 38 meters high, no nail was used in its construction.
The east and west halls located either side of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests, house small museums with exhibits used in the emperors rituals. They also house diagrams and plans of the construction of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests. Plus there are many photos accounting the various stages of the renovation projects on the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests and visits by famous dignitaries.
The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests is one of Beijing's most famous architectural landmarks. It was originally rectangular in shape and was named the Great Hall for Sacrificial Rituals used to worship both Earth and Heaven. In 1545 it was rebuilt as a round hall with a triple-eaved roof covered with blue, yellow and green glazed tiles symbolising Heaven, Earth and the mortal world and renamed the Great Hall for Offering Sacrifices. It was again reconstructed in 1751 with azure glazed tiles and renamed to its current name.
It is a magnificent triple-gabled circular building, 32 metres in diameter and 38 metres tall, built on three levels of marble stone base, where the Emperor prayed for good harvests. The building is completely wooden, with no nails. The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests has four inner, twelve middle and twelve outer pillars, representing the four seasons, twelve months and twelve traditional Chinese hours respectively. Combined together, the twelve middle and twelve outer pillars represent the traditional solar term.
This gate is the main gate to the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests and features three gates. The central gate was exclusively used by the God of Heaven, the east one for the Son of Heaven (the emperor), and the west one was for the court officials.
The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests is the most famous building in Beijing's Temple of Heaven Complex. It is an ornate cylindrical tower that is over 30 meters wide and almost 40 meters tall, with a three-layer gabled roof. The building sits on a fancy 6-meter high triple level marble platform. Its interior is ornately decorated from top to bottom with a variety of colors. The eaves under each layer of roof are also ornately decorated. You can't enter the temple's interior, but can see it very well through the wide door openings that are kept open for tourists.
The building was built in the early 1400s during the Ming Dynasty. It burned in the 1800s and was rebuilt.
The grounds that the Temple of Heaven sits on is about 3 times the size of the Forbidden City, so be ready for some walking! Actually, the grounds are large, but most of it is just rows and rows of trees...
The main attraction here is the 'Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest', the main building in the complex and one of the most famous Beijing symbols you will find on all sorts of tourist-bought goods.
Access to the park is through one of the four gates, located one each on the north, south, east, and west sides of the park. Ticket costs 30 yuan, and can access most of the park. You need another ticket to get into the Fasting Palace, which can be bought inside the park for another 10 yuan.
The hall was built in 1420 but restored in 1889. It is where the Emperors went, usually twice a year, to offer sacrifices to heaven to pray for good harvests. The top of the temple was blue, to symbolise heaven and the middle was painted yellow to symbolise the Emperor. Even though the temple was a heavy building with a height of 38 metres, it was only supported by 28 pillars with no reinforced concrete nor the use of nails. The four pillars in the centre of the temple signify the four seasons and the 12 inner pillars symbolise the 12 months of the year and the 12 outer pillars symbolise the 12 two hour periods of the day.
Built in 1420(the 18th year of Emperor Yongle's reign of the Ming Dynasty), the original hall, rectangular in shape, was first named the Great Hall for Sacrificial Rituals used to worship both Earth and Heaven. Rebuilt in 1545 (the 24th year of Emperor Jiajing's reign) into a round hall with a triple-eaved roof, each covered with blue, yellow and green glazed tiles respectively, symbolyzing Heaven, Earth and the mortal world, it was renamed the Great Hall for Offering Sacrifices.
Reconstructed in 1751, it was surmounted by a triple roof with azure glazed tiles only, culminating in a gilded sphere, and designated the Hall of Prayer for Good harvests, exclusively used to pray for good harvests in early spring.
38.2 metres in height and 24.2 metres in diametre, the hall is supported by immense pillars, symbolizing the four seasons, the 12 months of the year, the 12 time divisions of the day and night, and all the constellations. It is the only existing example of the ancient architectural style of Mingdang.
This is the main attraction inside the Temple of Heaven Park. This well-known piece of architecture not only serves as a symbol of Beijing, but also is representative of China. A great photograph spot. Additional entry fee required to see this Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest.
where you can see the pictures of various ming and qin emperors and colorful dioramas of the Temple of Heaven