Yue Fei Mausoleum Hangzhou – A Memorial for the Great Warrior

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The mausoleum of Yue Fei was built in 1221 during Song Dynasty to honor the great warrior. The mausoleum is situated within the complex of Yue Fei Temple located near the West Lake in the central city of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province in the People’s Republic of China. The temple is also called as or Yuewang Temple. On various occasions the temple had undergone reconstructions and renovations.Historians are unanimous in claiming that the Tomb of General Yue Fei has been demolished and the present one was rebuilt in 1715 during Qing Dynasty, who reigned during 1644-1911. It had undergone a major revamping in 1979. 

Biopic of Yue Fei:
Yue Fei was believed to be lived during 1103-1141, who was descended from Tangyain in Xiangzhou.Henan Province was previously known as Xiangzhou. He was a military general and led war successfully against Jin Dynasty during 1115 to 1234 under Song Dynasty. Nevertheless his glittering war success against Jin Dynasty, he was wrongly implicated as a traitor in connivance of Qin Kuai, who was the Prime Minister of Song Dynasty and eventually executed. The truth prevailed and Yue Fei's innocence was proved and as a result Emperor Xiao Zong who reined Song Dynasty during 1163 to 1189, built the tomb in memory of this great war hero.Today Yue Fei is considered as a national hero with all respect and glory.

The temple complex:
Located at the south foot hill of Qixia Hill, very close to West Lake the complex is spread of over in an area of four acres. Immediately entering the complex, you will be greeted with double eaves and a patio with drooping trees on both side of promenade. At the center of complex is located the main hall and remembrance hall.The center of the main hall is adorned with life size statue of General Yue Fei, dressed in colorful attire. The statue is constructed in sitting posture with the chair is made of colorfully embroidered cushion.The mighty looking, gracefully featured Yue Fei is seen holding a sword in his hand and posed like a ready for war mood. His life stories are kept on the rear side of the hall which will give a glimpse for tourist to learn him from a close angle. The floor of the hall is further embellished with 373 cranes and each crane is designed as a symbol of sincerity, loyalty and patriotism.

Poetic descriptions:
You can see a large hall in the west side of the complex. In this hall, there are two corridors with poetic inscriptions praising general Yue Fei. Passing over a small bridge at the center of the yard, you can see the tomb of this great warrior and also the tombs of his sons. The main tomb is that of Yue Fei is located at the center of the yard and on the side is the tomb of his son who was a stern supporter of Yue Fei in the battlefield.The tombs where defaced several times and reconstructed various times. The architectural and constriction style reflects the style that was prevalent in Song Dynasty. It is interesting to note that his perpetrators who was instrumental in executing, including that of Qin Kuai who was the Prime Minister and main perpetrators, is kept opposite to the tomb in a kneeling position within an iron fence. A symbolic gesture of punishment being endorsed to the perpetrators!

Travel tips:
Entry fee to the temple complex is CNY 25 per head.From the city tourist can easily reach to the temple complex by hoping in to regular transport bus service or can engage taxi.



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Six Harmonies Pagoda in Hangzhou

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Six Harmonies or Liuhe Pagoda is a multi story structure, which is also known as Six Harmonies Pagoda located in the foot of Yuelun Hill in southern Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, People's Republic of China.The Pagoda is magnificently overlooking the gracious Qiantang River.It was constructed during Northern Song Dynasty in AD 970.The Pagoda reflects the true ancient Chinese architectures.The Pagoda is built to calm down the tidal waters of Qiantang River and also to support the river navigation. The name 'Liuhe' represents the six Buddhist ordinances.The Pagoda was completed destroyed during a battle in 1121.



Re-built during Southern Song Dynasty:
The new pagoda was built by using bricks and woods during Southern Song Dynasty, reigned during 420 -589 and also additional exterior works and eaves were built during Ming and Qing Dynasties. The whole construction is octagonal shape.The pagoda is having 59.89 meters height and having 13 storeys in appearance from outside but actually it has only seven storeys. A spiral staircase is provided to reach to the top floor.Each of the floor ceilings are beautifully painted with animals, birds, various characters and flowers.Each floor has four elements that identical to each other and they are exterior walls, interior walls, small chamber and zigzagged corridor. When looking from outside, the upper portion of the pagoda looks brighter and on the lower side it seemed like bit darker. This is due to the wonderful combination of light and shade.

Used a lighthouse to navigate:
As per renowned historian Joseph Needham, the pagoda was also used a lighthouse to navigate vessels passing through Qiantang River. Due the considerable height of the structure, it has been used as permanent lighthouse during the early days itself.On climbing top of the pagoda and by standing on the majestic eaves, tourist can have the wonderful panoramic view of surrounding areas. Also, you can have spectacular view of the Qiantang River Bridge and the ripples of tidal waves. Near to the pagoda, a new exhibition center, Pagoda Park, is constructed and lot of ancient relics and exhibitions detailing the ancient pagodas build around Yuelun Hill in China.

The Legendary story:
There is a beautiful legend about the reason for construction of this octagonal structure in the foot hill of Yuelun Hill. The pagoda was build to suppress the horrific tidal bore generated from Qiantang River. The river often suffered from the tidal bores that surge up from Hangzhou Bay. People beleived the Dragon King is responsible for this phenomenon. Hearing the plight of the people a local boy named Liuhe used his magical power to crease the Dragon King's nefarious actions.As a token of gratitude the local farmers constructed this fine structure with brick and wood and called after his name. The name "Six Harmonies" is taken out from the Six Buddhist ordinances, which are heaven, east, west, south, north and earth.

Travel Tips:
From the city Hangzhou tourist can easily move the Six Harmonies Pagoda. Tourists can choose bus routes 2, 308, 5 and K4 which are regularly operating from the city terminal. Alternately, for group tourists can engage in tourist coaches.Taxi services are also available which are very economical.Tourist boarding from Shanghai, if travelling by High Speed Bullet train the journey would be much comfortable and easy. The pagoda will be opened 6:30 am to 5:30 pm.CNY 20 per head is the entrance fee.

The body of the pagoda is adorned from bottom to top with 104 iron bells which are hanging from the graceful upswept eaves. Something really charming at Six Harmonies Pagoda!



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Hangzhou Zoo – The Natural Zoo

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Hangzhou Zoo is located in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province in the People's Republic of China very close the West Lake Scenic Area. This is one of largest local zoon China and attracts quite lot of domestic tourists. The zoon was constructed in 1968 and revamped in October 1975.The zoon is notorious for the bad behavior of tourists by throwing stones and water bottles toward the animals as observed by international watch dogs, also they accuse the zoo is poorly maintained and animals are cramped in congested atmosphere.The zoo is sprawled over an area of 20 hectares. The zoon is developed in the natural atmosphere, keeping the mountain forest style.

 
Move around the zoo in protected vehicles:
Despite all the accusations, the management of the zoo has put lot of effort to streamline its operational qualities and today it is said to be one of the best zoo in China and given lot emphasis on scientific research, animal protection, education and popular science. Much focus is being applied to enhance the sightseeing facilities, educations tours programs by targeting school students and also concentrated efforts to attract people are interested in animal studies.The combination of various activities related to animals has given much expectation and people find this place one of the best locations for fun and entertainment.The cage systems are almost abolished and tourists are allowed to roam in the open zoo in protected transport vehicles.This gives tourist the opportunity to watch the animals in the natural environment and understand its natural behaviors. The new changes made the zoo one of the most attractive one among the rest.

Variety of animals:
There are more than 200 different types of animals can be seen in the zoo.Seeing this much different type of animals and interacting with them in close range is a special experience.You can really feel thrilled when they come so close to your vehicle and sniff around you. China's national animal Panda is breaded and brought up here with special attention.Similarly, Giraffe the world's tallest animal, you can see here roaming freely around the zoo.Also, the biggest bird ostrich, the biggest mammal Elephant are all the some other attraction. Similarly, the biggest serpent, the Boa and golden money, Chimpanzee, Hylobates leucogenys, lemur catta, Manchurian tiger, squirrel monkey, Yangtze alligator and African Lion are some of the strange hosts whom are waiting to greet you in the zoo.

Aquarium:
To add the glamor of the zoo, there is beautiful aquarium is added to the zoo complex.Tourists will be surprised to see the various colorful fishes swimming around the aquarium. Red Bubble, Silver Lion Head, Purple Crown and Black Dragon Eyes are some of the rare fish you can see in the aquarium. Further to the above, the zoo authorities have started planting flowering plants and various types of fruit trees in large quantities. The beautiful lay outs and promenades planted with beautiful flower plants gives soothing, comfortable experience for tourist. The cool atmosphere helps create a relaxing environment.

Travel and ticket:
From the city Hangzhou, tourists can easily move the zoo location.Tourist coming from Shanghai can reach here in the High Speed Bullet train. Entry to the zoo is by ticket, CNY 20 per adult and CNY 10 per children less than 1 meter height.


Daily animal performances are being conducted here with the participation of elephants, monkeys, bears, sea lions, tigers and various other animals. Children will really love to see the bear boxing and bear skiing shows!

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Leifeng Tower in Hangzhou

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Leifeng Tower is also known as Leifeng Pagoda located at Hangzhou city on Sunset Hill, south of West Lake in the Zhenjiang Province, People's Republic of China. This tower was built in AD 975 and it collapsed in 1924.The tower was rebuilt in 2002, by recreating in the old architectural marvel and today is one of the most busy tourist destinations in Hangzhou city.

History:

The tower was built during King Qian Chu of Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms to celebrate the birth of his son in one of his concubines, namely Huangfei. The tower was called as Huangfei Pagoda at that time. The elevation of the tower is in octagonal shape with five storey structure.Brick and woods are used for the construction and the base of the structure is built with solid hard bricks.

Japanese Pirates Torched the Pagoda:

The tower was attacked by Japanese pirates during Ming dynasty, suspecting that the tower would be storage of weapons and they torched it and bring down the structure in to a brick skeleton.This is evident in some of the painting relics of Ming period.

Interesting Legend:

Leifeng Tower is one of the ten most important sights of West Lake and there is a beautiful legend about a white snake related to Leifeng Tower and is known as Legend of the White Snake.People believed that the Pagoda has miracle power and it can protect ladies from miscarriages and repel illness.As a result, people started collecting the bricks and on September 25, 1924 the pagoda collapsed due poor management and lack of maintenance.

Legend of the White Snake is a love story between a young scholar who fell in love with a beautiful woman.The woman was actually an impersonated white snake and without knowing the fact, the scholar was emotionally attached to the woman. Seeing this, a monk intervened in their relationship and pushed the snake in to the deep well at the Lei Feng Pagoda and saved the soul of the scholar. Over a period of time the story on hearsay, gradually turned from a horror story to a beautiful love story. The pairs were deeply in love but such relationship is forbidden by the laws of Heaven! The legend travelled through centuries and many art forms and opera took this romantic theme for their cultural shows.

Rumors:

There were rumors about a mausoleum lay in the ground of floor of the tower.It was a hot subject of discussion on various historical platforms. Then the authorities decided to conduct a scientific search in the subject with radar mapping. In March 11, 2001 they found the position of the mausoleum and excavated the area. Lot of historical relicts and artifacts were recovered from the mausoleum and surrounding areas. The most important finding was a gold and silver coated hair of Buddha.

Reconstruction:


The Pagoda was decided to rebuilt in October 1999 and construction work started on the same location of the collapsed Pagoda over its ruins.For the construction, 1400 tons of steel and 200 ton of copper is used. The new tower has four sightseeing elevators and equipped with modern facilities such as air conditioners, loud speakers and televisions.The tower is fitted with two automatic elevators which can carry tourists from the base to the top of the tower.All the relics what has been recovered from the mausoleum are kept in a chamber in the underground base.The new tower is declared opened to the public on 25 October, 2002.

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