Tag Archives: tang dynasty

The Great Mosque of Xian: A Mixture of Muslim and Chinese Architecture

The Great Mosque in Xian is a mixture of Chinese and Muslim Architecture. This was created in 742, in the middle of the reign of the Tang Dynasty (618-907). It was the immediate consequence of the introduction of Islam to the Chinese.

Courtyard of the Great Mosque: Where you can see the stone tablets

This is one of the biggest place of worship for the Muslim in China… it contains a big prayer hall and a courtyard (where I took a lot of pictures).

This place was really old and when you see it in person, you will realize that it is untouched by modern hands—It wasn’t renovated and seems pretty old and seems dangerous. But, the oldness of this place is what makes it much stunning. The place makes you go back in time and really see what it looks like centuries ago.

The Courtyard

The untouched architecture is astonishing. It is old.. yes… but it is beautiful… Maybe, I can say, that all the things that I have seen in China, this is the place I really liked, due to the gracefulness and beauty of this historical place

Behind us is the praying room

I don’t have words to compensate how beautiful the place is. I might just understate whatever this place can offer you. This might be small (unlike various palaces in Beijing) but the art and the old architecture will compensate for such deficiency.

Moreover, upon going to this place, you will be passing a market usually run by Muslims. You can buy souvenirs there, but be careful, they might just pester you like other Chinese do. When I say pester, they might follow you until you buy their product…

Nonetheless, If you know Chinese and how much the real thing cost, then buying in the market is a good catch.. You can visit the market and the Great Mosque in one sitting 🙂

How to go here DIY?

Admission Fee:

  • 25CNY, 175PHP, 4USD (March-November);
  • 15CNY, 105PHP, 3USD (December-February)

Transportation:

  1. You can go ride a taxi (it is just near the city center
  2. Take bus Take bus 4, 7, 32, 201, 215, 222, 251, 252 or Tourism Bus No. 8 (610) and get off at Zhonglou (Bell Tower) Station. Walk to the Drum Tower and find entrance to the mosque in the Huajue Lane to the northwest of the Drum Tower.
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Huaqing Hotsprings: A place where the Emperor once took a bath.

Huaqings Hotspring is our last and final stop during our 2 day Xian trip. Due to the unexpected intense heat that surrounded Xian that day, we almost decided to skip this attraction. The thing we didn’t know was that this place is an astonishing opportunity to see the extravagance of Emperors and their concubines.

It was during the Tang dynasty that this palace was created. Stating that this is a historical place is an understatement. It has 6,000 years of history wrapping each wall and every corner of this marvelous attraction.

Entrance of the Huaqing Hotspring

Upon entering the gates of this Huaqing Hotspring I found myself dumbfounded, I didn’t know that this is such a serene and picturesque place. I learned from my previous research that this was the bathing place of the emperors and their concubines but I didn’t imagine it to be such a grand and charming place. Now I’m murmuring to myself “I wanna be an Emperor of China!”

Near the entrance is a  man-made lake with floating water-lilies, while palace pavilions greet you with their usual lively colors. Walking further, you will find a white statue of a woman looking reserved yet exudes a beautiful vibe.The statue seems to invite you to dip your worn out feet in one of the bathing area of this wonderful place.

yang guifei
the statue of Yang Guifei

That statue depicts  one of the four most beautiful women in the Tang dynasty. She is Yang Guifei one of the concubines of the Emperor. She is the most loved concubine among them all.

the emperor's bathing area

Our tour guide brought us to three bathing areas. The first one was said to be where the Emperors dip their body in the naturally heated water. The second was said to be where the concubines have their skins rejuvenated and the last was where the officials nearest to the heart of the emperor enjoys the utmost treatment.

the concubines' pool
the pool for officials and head chef

One thing I noticed, was the three bathing areas are connected with each other, the water flows down to the Emperor’s down to the officials’ bathing area. So, whatever dirt was scrubbed down from the Emperor’s skin will be conferred to the other two bath areas… But before, it wasn’t a problem, since they believe that touching the Emperor is like touching God… so I think the officials and the concubines never complained on such kind of setting (because if they complain I think they will go directly to heaven… )

other view of the hot springs (in the right corner, people are drinking water from the hotspring since it is said to have healing powers)

This is one of the oldest Hot Springs in China and one of the revered beautiful places in the country. I think, this is one of the place which a person shouldn’t miss, especially if visiting Xian. It is said to be part of the 100 most beautiful gardens in China.

Moreover, it also gives you a glimpse to the history and the way of life of the emperor, empresses and the concubines.

My Mom and the beautiful Huaqing Palace

By the way, the lake transforms into a stage during a performance… I just forgot to take a close-up picture of it. I don’t know if this is the lake or other lakes in the area.

By the way, the Emperor who is very in love with Yang Gufei, took a bath here more than 30 times! 🙂

How to get here DIY? (acdg. to Travel China Guide)

  • Admission Fee: CNY 80  P560.00 $13 USD (Dec. 1 – the end of the next Feb.);
  •                              CNY 110  P770.00 $17 USD (Mar. 1 – Nov. 30)
  • Performance Fees : CNY 218-988 P1526-6916 $35-$160 (The performance of The   
  •                              Song of Unending Sorrow)
  • Opening Hours: 9:00 am – 5:00pm

How to get here:

  • From Xian,
    1. Take Tourism Bus No.5 (306), the special route bus from Railway Station to the Terracotta Warriors via Huaqingchi Station, at the East Square of Xian Railway Stationand get off at Huaqingchi Stop.
    Bus fare: CNY6
    Estimated Travel Time: 45mins.
  • 2. Bus 307 from the south gate of Tang Paradise to Huaqingchi Station.
    Bus fare: CNY 7
  • 3. Bus 914 and 915 also run to Huaqing Hot Springs and Terra Cotta Warrors, but they are not suggested to take.
    From Lintong, Take bus 5101 from Lintong Bus Station to Huaqingchi Stop.

Tang Dynasty Show and Dumpling Banquet: a FULL-Filling Experience…

For our first night in Xian, we went to the Tang Dynasty and Dumpling Banquet. Our tour  guide coordinated everything during our travel in Xian, so we didn’t have any problem during our stay…

This show and banquet started since 1982 and had received recognition from UNESCO!!

This Tang Dynasty and Dumpling Banquet gives you a peek on the art, dances and music of the people during this period. It is a historic peek in the past life and the kind of living of the people during  those times. You will also learn how they depict love through their strokes and dances.

This show makes you travel in time while lounging yourself in the sweet smell of the dumplings 🙂

The Show

The gracefulness in every stroke made by the female dancers and the heart-warming music that surrounds you… is something that makes this experience… worthwhile…

Beautiful Strokes by the dancers

The show lasts for about 1 hour and then the dumpling banquet begins! The waitresses will serve you the dumplings and while waiting, they will play you a nice classical chinese music which will make your head turn and unknowingly you won’t mind about the dumplings anymore!

Wonderful Choreography and Lighting

Moreover, if you haven’t tried other similar cousins of the dumplings other than the more known beef, chicken or pork; then, visiting this place will make you learn how many  kinds of cousins that this tiny-yummy dumplings have.

And also, our tour guide said that the dumplings in Xian are the best! So, better yet eat your dumplings when you visit Xian.

The Dumpling Soup.... it's still being cooked... YUM!

During our visit, I think I ate 25 kinds of dumplings… at first I was so excited but after the 10th serving, I’m like “There’s more?” my tummy says “enough” but my mind says “More!”.  My mind wanna taste everything even though I’m already full. Tasting different kinds of those similar looking gooey stuff was really exciting and an unforgettable experience.

One of the dumplings served.. YUM!

But, mind you, I don’t know the name and forgot the tastes of those dumplings that I ate… Sorry! 🙂 but I can assure you that they don’t taste the same… some others you will like, while others you won’t. The tastes varies, depending on the kind of the dumpling.

For Dessert;
Another Yummy Food 🙂

And By the way after going here, I think it took me 7 months before I eat dumplings or dimsum again. It’s just like saying “I had enough!”

Overall, I think this is a good experience since you will not only see the beautiful traditional dances during the Tang dynasty but you will also be able to eat different kinds of dumplings!

For buying your entrance ticket you need to book the ticket in advance. The ticket with dumplings costs 370RMB, P2590, $60 per person, 220RMB, P1540, $35 USD for dance show only.

I just realized that the ticket fees are too expensive!!! I didn’t know about the prices since mine is part of a package tour. You can contact them through: