Summer Palace – A masterpiece of Chinese landscape gardening


The Summer Palace is the best preserved imperial garden in the world that clearly depicts the essence of classical Chinese architecture in its own unique way. It is the ideal place to get an idea of how traditional Chinese landscape gardening creates a poetic harmonization of different scenes. This can even be seen in its Chinese name Yihe yuan which literally means the “Gardens of Nurtured Harmony”.

It is a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design where the natural beauty of landscaped hills and open water is blended with man made pavilions, arched bridges, decorated corridors and breezeways to form a edifice of exceptional aesthetic value.

As its name indicates the Summer Palace was used as a luxurious royal garden retreat where China’s royal families used to relax and enjoy the beautiful gardens and spend a relaxing time in the airy pavilions during the summer. It was originally known as the “Garden of Clear Ripples” when it was first built in the 12th century. It is said that the best designers and landscapers in China combined the styles of different gardens and palaces from throughout the Empire in building this remarkable monument.

In its long history the Summer Palace complex suffered two major attacks and was even destroyed by fire. In 1911, with the birth of the Republic of China it was declared a public park and today it serves as a recreational park which attracts many tourists to the area.

In 1998 UNESCO included the Summer Palace on World Heritage List recognizing it as a symbol of one of the world’s major civilizations. Grand Millennium Beijing is a premier five star Beijing hotel which offers the best facilities for the global travelers who come to visit this historical landmark.

Pushpitha Wijesinghe is an experienced independent freelance writer. He specializes in providing a wide variety of content and articles related to the travel hospitality industry.

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