Trip Planner:   Asia  /  China  /  Beijing  /  Historic Sites  /  Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan)
Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan), Beijing
(4.1/5 based on 700+ reviews on the web)
Favorite summer retreat for Qing emperors until its systematic destruction by Anglo-French troops in 1860, Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan) serves as a reminder of the ruthlessness of European gunboat diplomacy. Originally built in the 12th century, this partially restored palace spans 350 hectares (864 acres), expanded in the 18th and early 19th centuries with the help of two Italian Jesuits. Take a boat ride to explore lotus ponds, or stroll along the Jiuzhou lakefront to ponder intricately carved stone ruins and hundreds of scenic spots. Ascend the throne for observing waterworks and the maze of this "Versailles of the East," looted and thoroughly destroyed by the West. The first ever Pekinese dog in the UK, kidnapped by Lord Elgin from this spot as a gift to Queen Victoria, started a real vogue among British elites of the time. Arrange your visit to Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan) and discover more family-friendly attractions in Beijing using our Beijing holiday planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • When the invading foreign armies pillaged the old Summer Palace, they left their savage mark upon this city's inhabitants. The ruins were kept as they were left, just as a reminder for the future of C...  more »
  • It is a garden that fell into oblivion for a long time, has details and a style pulling European, the ruins are beautiful and interesting to see, nothing to do with the culture and art of ancient china. Them Lakes and the landscapes that is come, in my opinion are more beautiful that those of the Palace of summer. It is less crowded and cheaper. Zig-zagging bridges, trees and vegetation are really very nice and contrasted with the temples and the architecture. The ruins you moved to the ancient Greece. It is not a mandatory activity if you have little time, but if you enjoy 5-6 days in Beijing, I think that you should visit. It is located just one stop metro from the summer palace, so it may be an interesting to a whole day itinerary.
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  • 圓明園距離清華大學附中很近,建議從東門進入,買票時分為聯票和單門票兩種,聯票20元,但門票10元,我們當時買了單門票,結果進去后得知還需要再買一次門票15元,因為重要的景觀全部都在小圓子里。