Xi’an Bell Tower

Bell Tower is situated at the heart of Xi’an city at the main crossing junction of the East, West, South and North avenue. It is considered symbol of Xi’an today. It was built in 1384 by Emperor Zhuyuanzhang during the early Ming Dynasty as a way to dominate the surrounding country side and provide early warning of attack by rival rulers.

The original location of the Bell Tower was shifted to the west side of the city due to the expansion of city in 1582. It was rebuilt and enlarged by Qing Dynasty. People turndown the original Bell Tower and Re-built the current tower to the centre of the city.

The base of the tower is square shape and covers an area of 1,377 square meters. It is 8.6 meters high, 35.5 meters wide and built by bricks. Brick and timber used as a construction material for the 36 meters high tower. There are three layers of eave can be seen from exterior of the building but only two layers are visible from inside. The engraved arcs under each eaves come with coloured designs. This type of designs on the arc has already appeared in the construction of Shang Dynasty (1,600 BC-1,100 BC) bronze ware.

Bell Tower also has some large bronze bells from Tang Dynasty which used to tell the time by. There are also other smaller bells on exhibit too.

Visitors accessed to the Bell Tower from the Subway Station on Beidajie

Huaqing Hot Spring

Huaqing (Hua means brilliant, qing means clear or pure) Hot Spring is situated at the base of Lishan Hill in Lintong County,30 kmeast of Xi’an city. It was a popular retreat with Emperors more than 2,500 years ago.

It is famed because of its spring scenery and romantic love story of the emperor Xuanzong (685-762) and his concubine Yangguifei in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). The Hot Spring has been operating since the Tang Dynasty, and offers mineral water at43°Cwarmth. The mineral water at the Hot Spring contains sodium carbonate, lime and sodium sulphate. The Hot Spring mineral water is recommended for the treatment of rheumatism, arthritis, dermatitis and muscular pain patients. This site is particularly popular among the Chinese tourist than foreign tourist.

Today only small part of theTangDynastyPalaceremains at the Huaqing Hot Spring which is around 85,560 square meters. If you enter to the Huaqing Hot Spring by West gate, you will see Nine Dragon Pools, Lotus Flower Pool and Frost Drifting Hall which were rebuilt during the 1959 by accordance to the Tang Dynasty Architectural style.

It is said that King You built a palace here during the Western Zhou Dynasty (1045 BC – 256 BC) and named it Li Palace after the Li Mountain, a branch ofQinlingRange. In the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC), a Stone Pool was built and was given the name Li Mountain Hot Spring (because of the hot spring there). This site was enlarged into a bigger palace on the site of the Stone Pool during the Han Dynasty (206 BC-220 AD) then name Li Palace.

The first Emperor, Tai Zong from Tang Dynasty (618-907) ordered to enlarge the palace. Then the emperor Xuanzong built walled palace around Li Mountain in 747 then the name changed toHuaqingPalacethen to Huaqing Hot Spring because of the Hot spring at the site. The Tang Dynasty (618-907) Emperor Xuanzong used to spend his winter time in Huaqing Hot Spring with his favourite concubine Yangguifei. Due to Xuanzong misused power result the An Lushan Rebellion which damaged the stability of his regime and resulted the destruction of some of the palaces built at this site.

Tourist to this site can visit the emperors bathing pool and Hibiscus Pool dates back to 712 AD. There is a museum which exhibits building material used during Tang Dynasty. There is alsoHoveringRainbowBridge, this bridge reflects the sunset in such a way that it appears to be a rainbow. Visitors to the site can take a bath at the imitated Yangguifeis Pool to have the experience. Tourist at the Huaqing Hot Spring can experience the same confort as Emperor Xuanzong or Yangguifei did. Tourist to the site also can experience the imitated Tang Style dance performance and Chinese Tea Ceremony in the Teahouse. Tourist also can enjoy Chinese calligraphy collection at the site.

Today, Huaqing Hot Spring ranked as one of the Hundred Famous Gardens in China, and protected under the National Cultural Relics and National Key Scenic Spot.

Shaanxi History Museum


Shaanxi History Museumis located to the Southern suburb of Xi’an City and Northwest of Big Wild Goose Pagoda. The museum exhibits more than 370,000 artefacts including pottery, coins, mural, bronze, gold and silver items unearthed from the province. The artefacts in collection belong to Han, Wei, Jin, North and South, Sui, Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties.

The modern museum built designed to ancient Tang Dynasty (618 – 907) architectural style and building area covers area of 65,000 square meters. The museum mainly consist of three main sections, which are; Basic Exhibition Hall, Theme Exhibition Hall, and East Exhibition Hall. If you are keen to learn about Chinese culture, there is a tomb murals exhibition on extra cost.

Basic Exhibition Hall

The basic Exhibition Hall consists of No 1, 2 and 3 exhibition halls which is placed by time order. The No. 1 exhibition hall contains relics from social development from Stone Age to end of imperial era in Qin Dynasty in 1840, the items included of stone tools used by ape man, weapons and many more. The No. 2 exhibition hall gives brief look at the history from Han Dynasty to to the Southern and Northern Dynasties, which includes paper making great invention and other famous historical events in the history. The No. 3 exhibition hall contains the historical and relics of the Sui, the Tang, the Song, the Yuan, the Mining, and the Qing Dynasties various relics.

Theme Exhibition Hall

The Theme Exhibition hall displays the various theme oriented cultural relics and history of Shanxi Provenience, includes Buddhist, Pottery, and many more figures.

East Exhibition Hall

The East Exhibition Hall consist of contemporary exhibitions depending on various exhibition themes, such as Chinese calligraphy, arts, cultural relics, Silk Road exhibitions and many more.

Xi’an Great Mosque

The Great Mosque in Xi’an is one of the oldest and most well-known mosques in China, located on Huajue Lane near to Drum Tower in Xi’an City Centre. It was first built when the Islam was introduced to China by Arab merchants during the Tang Dynasty (685 -762) in 742 AD and still in use by China Hui Muslims as a place to worship Allah (God).

Many additions are made to this mosque during the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties. It’s covered an area of 11,750 square meters with width of 47 meters and length of 250 meters.

It is divided to four courtyards which each designed uniquely. The 1st courtyard contains wooden arch which dates back to 17th century. The 2nd courtyard contains stone arch stands with two steles on both sides. The 3rd courtyard contains steles from ancient times. The 4th courtyard contains main praying hall. It can hold up to 1,000 prayers at a time.

What is special of this mosque is that the 30 chapter of Holy Quran is carved on the wooden boards and placed on the main praying hall of this mosque. Also the Great Mosque’s architecture and construction is completely Chinese style which doesn’t have any dome and minarets like the other mosques in other part of China or in the World. Please note that the non-Muslims are not allowed to enter during the praying time and to main praying hall of the mosque. Tickets are issued to visitors at 15 Yuan during the low tourist season and 25 Yuan during the high tourist seasons.

Small Wild Goose Pagoda

The Small Wild Goose Pagoda is located 2 km south of Xi’an City Wall on Southern suburb of Xi’an. It was built 707 during the Tang Dynasty. It consists of Xi’an Museum, the Pagoda and Dajianfu Temple. The Dajianfu Temple was built in 684 A.D. and original name was Daxianfusi (Great Monastery of Offered Blessing).

Later the original name was changed to Dajianfusi by Emperor Wuzetian in 690 A.D. The temple used to be the one of the main centre for translating Buddhist scriptures from India in Chang’an.

The Xi’an Museum displays more than 2,000 historical relics. In the central axis, there are the White Clothing Pavilion, the Small Wild Goose Pagoda, the Sutra Depository, the Mahavira Hall, and the Maitreya Pavilion in the Jianfu Temple. Verdant trees, grass and beautiful flowers can be found throughout the time-honored building complex.

The Small Wild Goose Pagoda was newer and smaller than the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, the name was given to it in order to distinguish it from Big Wild Goose Pagoda. It was 45 meters tall until a powerful earthquake in1556 hit Shaanxi and now it is 43 meters tall with total of 13 levels which was total of 15 levels. It is square on plane and rises skyward in an elegant spindle shape. Inside, the narrow wooden stairway winds its way to the top of the pagoda.

There is a giant iron bell about 3.5 meters tall and around 10 tons in weight resides in the Jianfu Temple. It is sound spreads to as far as 3 miles.

The pagoda is a unique and delicately shaped with a hollow inside in order to house Buddhist scriptures at that time.

The ticket to pagoda is issued at 10 Yuan per ticket.