This small Taoist temple is located just to the west on the other side of the road from the main entrance gate into the Mountain Resort Main Palace. It was first built in 1732 during the reign of Emperor Yongzheng and is dedicated to Guan Yu. It's a delightful little temple and well worth a visit if you have the time.
This palace ruin lies to the east of the Main Palace inside the Mountain Resort. It was originally built in 1754 and contained the Qingyin Chamber, Fushou Garden, Diligent-working Palace and Hall of Quan'e splendors. It caught fire in 1945 and was never rebuilt.
The Putuo Zongcheng Temple complex was built between 1767 and 1771, during the reign of the Qianlong Emperor (1735-1796). It is located to the north of the Mountain Resort. Along with the equally famed Puning Temple, it is one of the Eight Outer Temples of Chengde. The temple was modeled after the Potala Palace of Tibet, the old sanctuary of the Dalai Lama built a century earlier. Hence the Putuo Zongcheng has been nicknamed the "Little Potala Palace". Since it was modeled after the Potala palace, the temple represents a fusion of Chinese and Tibetan architectural styles. The temple complex covers a surface area of some 220,000 square meters, making it one of the largest in China.
The Putuo Zongcheng Temple was originally dedicated to Qianlong in order to commemorate his birthday, as well as provide Hebei with a temple of equal size and splendor as the Tibetan Potala Palace. It is a must-see-thing when in Chengde.
Open: 8am-5.30pm. Admission: RMB40.
Pu You Temple is located next to Puning Temple on its eastern side. When putting down the rebellion of the Hui tribe in 1760, Emperor Qianlong ordered the construction of this temple. In the temple there is a Hall of the Heavenly King, which is the main building.
This hall is the most famous within the Puning Temple as its here that the world's tallest wooden sculpture of the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara (22.28 meters high and weighing 110 tons), is housed. The statue shows a thousand different eyes and a thousand different arms stretched out from its frame (in various sizes). The statue itself is made from five kinds of wood, including pine, cypress, elm, fir, and linden. Photos are not allowed inside but you can buy a postcard of the statue for RMB10.
Open: 8am-5.30pm. Admission: RMB50
The Puning Buddhist Temple was built in 1755, during the reign of the Qianlong Emperor (1735-1796 AD) to show the Qing's respect to the ethnic minorities. It is located to the north-east of the Chengde Mountain Resort, and alongside the equally famed Putuo Zongcheng Temple, is one of the "Eight Outer Temples" of Chengde. Much how the Putuo Zongcheng Temple was modeled after the Tibetan Potala Palace, the Puning Temple was modeled after the Samye Monastery, the sacred Lamaist site in Tibet. The front temple was constructed in the Chinese style, although the temple complex follows both Chinese and Tibetan architectural styles. The Puning Temple also houses the world's tallest wooden sculpture of the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara (22.28 meters high and weighing 110 tons), hence the Puning Temple is often nicknamed the "Big Buddha Temple".
Open: 8am-5.30pm. Admission: RMB50
This temple lies on the eastern side of the Mountain Resort with the resort walls. It was built in 1751 and means "Temple of Eternal Happiness and Blessing". The temple is dominated by a 9-storey, 67 metre-high octangonal pagoda which is modelled on the Liuhe Pagoda in Hangzhou and Baoen Temple in Nanjing. The Xiexin Hall on the temples western side was where the emperor used to rest and change his clothes when worshipping his ancestors.
Having just come back from a trip to Mongolian, I was quite surprised to see these Mongolian Gers lined up as part of a resert. However, they look far more comfortable than the ones I stayed in as they look like they have air-conditioning and proper front doors. They're also musch higher than the ones in Mongolia. You can stay here, if you so wish, with the Ger Resort being located on the eastern side of the Mountain Resort.
Here's a list of musical performances that takes place at different scenic spots around the lake:
At Canglangyu Garden - perform "Suzhou Folk Music" - 9:30-10:00, 10:30-11:00, 15:30-16:00, 16:30-17:00
At Good Luck Island - perform "Peking Opera" - 9:40-10:10, 10:20-10:50, 15:30-15:50
At a Rock to Watch Fish - perform Folk Music - 10:00-10:20, 10:30-11:00
At Green Maples in Green Islet - perform Royal Music - 9:00-9:30, 10:00-10:30, 11:00-11:30, 11:50-14:00, 14:30-15:00, 15:30-16:00, 16:30-17:00, 17:30-18:00
At Mongolian Tent - perform Qing Banquet Music - 19:30-20:30
This garden features many courtyards and was built in 1704. Emperor Kangxi wrote its name on the horizontal inscribed board that hangs on its gateway entrance. The main building is called Jingji Shan Fang Hall (Silent Study) and was where emperors used to read books.
This garden was built in 1774 and modelled on a garden in Suzhou after Emperor Qianlong made an inspection tour in the south of the country that included Suzhou. He then ordered this garden be built here.
The Lake Area lies to the north of the Palace Area. The lakes area, which includes 8 lakes, covers an area of 496,000 square meters and the lakes are called Cheng Lake, Mirror Lake, Ruyi Lake, Upper Lake, Lower Lake, Silver Lake, Half-moon Lake and Inner Lake. Cheng Lake is the deepest while Rehe Spring is famous for its crystal-clear waters. You can find some lovely bridges, pavilions and masses of lotus plants surrounding the lake which all make for a nice walk.
In 1861, Emperor Xianfeng died at the Mountain Resort and at the same time a palace coup began. From then on, a young girl of 27 ascended on the Chinese political stage - known as Empress Dowager Cixi. This section exhibits some of her personal items.
The Hall of Simplicity and Sincerity (Dan Bo Jin Cheng) was the main hall of the Mountain Resort Palace. It was constructed in 1711 and then rebuilt out of nanmu wood in 1754 and was where the emperors handled state affairs and held grand ceremonies.
The project of building the Chengde Mountain Resort started in 1703 and finished in 1790. The whole mountain resort covers an area of 5,640,000 square meters and is the largest royal garden in China. The wall of the mountain resort is over 10,000 meters in length. In summers, emperors of Qing Dynasty came to the mountain resort to relax themselves and escape from the high temperature in Beijing.
The whole Resort can be divided into four areas: these are the palace area, lakes area, plains area and mountain area. The Palace Area lies in the south part of the Mountain Resort and is a concentration of palaces where the Qing emperors handled the political affairs and where the royal families lived. It covers an area of 100,000 sq meters (25 acres), consisting of four main complexes: the Main Palace, the Pine-Crane Hall, the East Palace and the Pine Soughing Valley. The lakes area, which includes 8 lakes, covers an area of 496,000 square meters. The plains area covers an area of 607,000 square meters. The emperors held horse races and hunted in the area. The largest area of the four is the mountain area. It covers an area of 4,435,000 square meters. Hundreds of palaces and temples were built on the hills in this area.
Open: 7am-5pm. Admission: RMB90.