Friday, May 10, 2013

Bell Tower - Beijing

May 1 was Labor Day in China and a big holiday. We tried to go to the zoo but the subway stop there was out of service because of the crowds. The train just blew through the station. So rather than walk from the next station we decided to go to the Bell Tower. The crowds were big but not out of control.
Boats on Qianhai near Houhai in Beijing

We had to walk through the Houhai area to get there. I've posted about this area several times.

Here is a link to one of them. Houhai
Pedal boats on Qianhai near Houhai in Beijing

The guy with the single oar seemed to have better control than the people in the pedal boats. I guess that is the difference between amateurs and professionals.

We didn't walk down Nanluoguxiang but it was very crowded.

I realized I didn't take a picture of the outside of the Bell Tower so I recycled this one from an earlier post about the Drum Tower.

You can find that post here.  Drum Tower

Actually, there is a  better picture of the outside at this post.  Drum and Bell Towers

Here is shot of the stairs up to the bell. Very similar to the Drum Tower. They are pretty steep.
The bell in the Bell Tower in Beijing

This is the Bell. It was cast about 600 years ago out of solid copper.

The bell is stationary. The red log is used to ring the bell.

The large copper bell in the Beijing Bell Tower

The bell is 23 ft long and weighs 63 tons. It seems that 63 tons of copper would have been a huge investment in the early 1400s. It would have taken a lot of effort to mine, refine, and cast that much copper. On the other hand, I guess a country that can build the Great Wall can gather up 63 tons of copper.

The steles are in a courtyard that is closed off. Steles were often constructed to commemorate some action or proclamation by the emperor.

Not sure what to make of the saw.

This is a picture of the gate to the Bell Tower with the Drum Tower in the background.
The Drum Tower as seen from the Bell Tower in Beijing

Here is a picture of the Drum Tower from the Bell Tower.

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