Ming Tombs

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Jundushan, Beijing, China

Ming Tombs Beijing Reviews

FoxyFauz FoxyFauz
229 reviews
Ming Tombs - All the hype! May 20, 2015
Built in 1407 by the 3rd Emperor, Zhu Di from the Ming Dynasty for his final resting place (Changling Tomb), the subsequent 12 emperors also had their tombs built here during the span of 230 years therefore making this place the best preserved tomb area. However note that only 3 tombs are accessible : Changling, Dingling & Zhaoling.

Before reaching Changling Tomb itself, we had to walk along this 7 metre long path (kind of like a garden trail with many statues of animals or mystical creatures) called Sacred Way, also known as Changling Sacred Way. As the Emperor is considered Son of Heaven and “ascended to Earth through the Sacred Road”, he must also return to Heaven through this Sacred Road therefore why this pathway was built.

At the end of this long walk, we will reach the tomb where Emperor Zhu Di & his Empress Xu (together with his many concubines) were supposedly buried. We cannot see the actual tomb which is underground somewhere. It was explained that during those days, when the Emperor dies, his concubines either 16 or 30 must also die so that they can be buried together. This is the largest, original and the best preserved among the thirteen tombs, and has three courtyards in the front and a Treasure City in the round rear part. So you will see the Memorial tablet, many gates and pavilions. I think one of the reasons why these stones/ brick walls are still surviving to this day was because (as explained by the tour guide), every worker had to state his name on each brick he made (as you can see from my photo). So the workmanship must be good if not great. If the brick breaks, this means death for that builder as there is no way of hiding since his name is on that brick. And now we think about how everything manufactured in China these days breaks or spoils so easily – cause the worker’s name is not impressed on the product hahaha.

For Emperor Wan Li’s (Zhu Yijun) Tomb (Dingling) – The only tomb to be excavated so this was the only underground tomb we were able to see. What is being displayed are red coffins. The Emperor + his 2 Empresses + 26 coffins supposedly containing royalty’s personal items like jade. We were told that these coffins are actually EMPTY replicas and just for display. Pretty disappointing as what this essentially means is that we never actually see ANY tombs!

Our guide explained that when some of the real coffins were discovered by local people, they did not know that these are actually royal tombs. Strange, I know. And since the royal coffins are said to be highly decorated and of the best quality of wood (the jewellery etc are buried together with the royalty when they die), the locals decided to profit from it by keeping the coffins in their homes together with everything inside. I am guessing they remove what remains of the human skeleton. The guide tells us a story of how one of the locals, his children were playing with the coffins and somehow got locked inside. So when he discovered all his children were dead, it was only then that he decided to get rid of the coffins (since he believed this to be a curse), and the authorities came to discover these tombs. Whether this is urban legend, I do not know.

So come if you really have the time or you are really fascinated by Chinese history.
The empty replica coffins of the E…
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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Johnpro Johnpro
208 reviews
The statue park ! Aug 09, 2010
The Ming Tombs are located about 30 miles northwest of Beijing at the foot of the Tianshou Mountains.

One of the more impressive sights at the Ming Tombs is the Sacred Way. The Sacred Way runs for about a kilometer and is flanked on both sides by carvings of human and animal figures. There are 12 large stone human figures and 24 of animals, all carved from a single blocks of granite in 1435 during the 10th year of the reign of Emperor Xuan De.

Just visit it before go at great wall and was a really great walk in this fantastic garden !

I recommended to you before visit the wall , and don't jump to the turtle :)

I will upload some photos to have a look !
2 / 2 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
CristinaDiaz Cristina…
5 reviews
Go if you have nothing better to do that day Jul 18, 2008
I expected some amazing tombs and all it was were big blocks of stone.

Worth going to only to say you've gone there

the grounds above the tombs and the park are beautiful.

It's also located right by the Spirit Path which is a must see!

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