Monday, April 6, 2009

Photo special: Temple of Heaven (Tian Tan 天坛)


















I will kick start this week with a delayed photo special of Beijing's Temple of Heaven (Tian Tan 天坛). I was there during a muggy and warm day in May 2006 and, except for the heat and the crowd, I enjoyed the experience. Although I definitely would recommend people to go during the spring/fall (or even winter!) rather than during the summer. Attractions tend to lose their charm when it is steaming hot as well as crammed with tourists.

So if you can avoid going there during the summer or during the wknds, it's definitely worth a visit. It's located in southeastern urban Beijing, in Xuanwu District, so it's easy to access.

And now a little history lesson: The temple was built in 1406 to 1420 during the reign of the Yongle Emperor, who was also responsible for the construction of the Forbidden City in Beijing. The complex was visited by the Emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties for annual ceremonies of prayer to Heaven for good harvest.

(thanks for that, Wikipedia!)

13 comments:

养蜂猴 said...

As a translating of "**区" of a city, "district" is always written in China, i'm wondering whether "section" is better than "district".
Thanks for helping a confused Chinese guy, haha, Alles gute.

Lover of Life said...

Fascinating. I would love to visit.

Enes said...

I really want to go to china... especially the Great Wall! when it's winter, all will be covered with snow...


Expression
Tour around the world

mantse said...

i have been there twice before, in 2003 and 2007, both were winter time..... but i can imagine how hot there... i always tell my friend, Beijing is a desert indeed!!!

i enjoy the park so much, which caused there are many old people sing and dance and doing exercises there. some even practise calligraphy there!!!

Lovely place with local people also enjoy there!!

Tripfriend said...

养蜂猴 - I see it translated as "zone" sometimes, but I think that's just for the area I live in. I haven't seen it used like that anywhere else. It's really is a flexible word. I've seen four different translations so far. It just depends on the situation.

angelaseeangelablog said...

Awww your blog is so adorable, I loved that post about weird gym attire (I just stick to my Stella Maccartney tops, leggings and Sketchers shoes)!!! I miss china so much, I went there last year and it was amazing! (Nanjing).

XXASAB

Brad F. said...

Very neat looking place.

Jason S said...

@养蜂猴
Actually 'district' is an accurate translation of 区.
When speaking English you can say "I really like that section of town", referring to an area, but as for the the pieces into which a govt divides a city, 'district' is the right word.
Hope that helps.
(the English teacher in me couldn't help buy reply!)

LoveANewIdea said...

Great photos...especially love the one of the little bridge over the pond, with all of the greenery around it, and the rough wind and water worn rocks.

Buttonsmum said...

Visited this area of Beijing in November 2008. Can't imagine what the heat must be like in summer. Also visited 2 areas of the Great Wall. What a fascinating history, loved the Beijing Zoo and could not stop taking photos of the Pandas. I want to go back as I feel there is still a lot to see and I love the people.

lei said...

@ Jason S

the english teacher in you also forgot how to spell "but" correctly.

Matthew said...

This is one of the few places in Beijing I like. Both times I visited I had great weather. And for some reason it was not crowded when I was there.

kanmuri said...

In Japanese we translate 区 as "ward."

I'm going to China next year in April, I guess the timing will be good then ;)