Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan), Beijing

4.1
#8 of 166 in Parks in Beijing
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. Plan to visit Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan) during your Beijing vacation using our convenient Beijing road trip site .
Create an itinerary including Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan)
map
Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan) Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
847 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • The most stunning of the imperial palace of the Qing Dynasty, which was the most prosperous of Yongzheng and Qianlong, was the Haiyan of the Western-style architecture of the Qianlong period, unfortunately, in the Anglo-French War, and the high price of 12 in the international market is also the origin of the park, is a necessary point of view.
    View original
  • The YuanmingYuan Subway exit is right beside the entrance to the old Summer Palace. It cost 25 RMB to get in. I was the only westerner there with about 100,000 Chinese. I was there 5 hours from about ...  more »
  • If you only have time to go to one or other of the summer palace ruins complexes, then make it the New Summer Palace. However there's plenty to see here, too, and the Western side can be remarkably qu...  more »
Places to stay near Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan)

Plan your trip to Beijing

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans to Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan) by other users

6 days in Beijing BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 60 days in Asia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, culture, outdoors, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 60 days in Asia BY A USER FROM INDIA July, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 38 days in China BY A USER FROM NEPAL June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 6 days in Beijing BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA March, popular PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 24 days in China BY A USER FROM CANADA March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, hidden gems PREFERENCES: March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 5 days in Beijing BY A USER FROM INDIA June, teens, popular PREFERENCES: June, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 6 days in Beijing BY A USER FROM INDIA June, teens, popular PREFERENCES: June, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 19 days in Hong Kong, Shanghai & Beijing BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Beijing BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Beijing BY A USER FROM POLAND September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 30 days in China BY A USER FROM CHINA June, culture, outdoors, romantic, popular PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, romantic ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans