Saturday, November 10, 2012

Forbidden City and Jingshan Park

Handle of fire water cauldron in the Forbidden City

When Bob, Sue and Alyssa were visiting we, of course, visited the Forbidden City. It was a pretty nice day with lots of sunshine.

This is a handle on one of the large copper cauldrons used to hold water in case fire broke out in one of the buildings. Purely decorative now.

Here are Sue, Alyssa and Bob as they stand at the back of the Gate of Supreme Harmony in the Forbidden City. The building behind is the Hall of Supreme Harmony. This hall is the largest in the complex and was used for major occasions such as the enthronement of a new emperor.
Hall of Supreme Harmony in the Forbidden City

Here is a closeup of the Hall. You can get a sense of the size of the crowd.

I wonder how many thousands of pictures of the inside of the this hall are taken every day?

If you'd like to see what the throne looks like check out the following post from a couple of years ago.

Forbidden City 2010
Hall of Medium Harmony and Hall of Preserving Harmony in the Forbidden City

On the right is the Hall of Medium Harmony. The Hall of Preserving Harmony is on the left.

One of the halls was undergoing some maintenance or restoration work.

Bamboo scaffolding was outlawed in Beijing a number of years ago. It is all steel now.  Interestingly, it is still allowed in Hong Kong.

The restrooms in the Forbidden City are rated 4 stars. They really are near the top for public toilets in China.
Fire water cauldrons in the Forbidden City

Here are some of the copper fire water cauldrons.

This isn't a very good picture but the point is that there are a number of small museums inside the Forbidden City. This display was of some of the wedding gifts one of the emperors received on the occasion of their wedding.

Lots of decorative tile work on the outside of the buildings.

Click to enlarge.

More tile.

If this dragon has five toes then it is an imperial dragon.

Another tile piece.

I stuck the camera through an open window to take this picture. I believe this is the inside of one of the buildings that were home to the emperor's concubines.

This is the view as you leave the north gate of the Forbidden City. That is Jingshan Park in the background.

As we walked over to Jingshan Park we stopped to use the facilities here. This was definitely NOT a 4 star bathroom. I think the warning signs at the bottom were supposed to apply to the manhole nearby but they could have been posted for the toilets themselves.

Here are some National Day decorations inside of Jingshan Park.

For more on Jingshan Park, see this earlier post.

Jingshan Park

I had wandered off a bit and I noticed this guy taking pictures of the exotic foreign visitors to the park.

They sort of broke up thier discussion and I admonished them for messing up the composition.

Alyssa and Bob obliged by posing.

I imagine this picture is on some blog in China.

Photography seems to have become a pretty popular hobby among the 50+ year old men in China with the means to buy semi-pro equipment.

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