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White Emperor City

 Chongqing Attractions

White Emperor City, or Baidicheng, is one of famous tourist attractions of theThree Gorges. It is located on the Baidi Mountain, which is at the north shore of Yangtze River and the entrance of Qutang Gorge, 8 km east of the Fengjie County in Chongqing. 

The White Emperor City is in fact an ancient temple complex  full of historical temples and gates on the top of Baidi Mountain. It is also famous as the City of Poems. Attracted by its fame, many ancient Chinese scholars and poets (such as Li Bai, Du Fu, Bai Juyi, Liu Yuxi, Su Shi, Huang Tingjian, Fan Chengda, Lu You, etc.) visited here and left numerous literal treasures. The famous poem "leave the white emperor city at dawn" was written by the well known ancient poet Li Bai. In addition, there are over 70 poems, carvings, and cultural relics of the Sui, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties in the city. 

The White Emperor City China has long been a refuge for would-be kings and poets, who have traveled here to be inspired by the majestic views of Qutang Gorge. It has also been said that someone saw a white dragon, the symbol of the Emperor come out there, and the warlord Gongsun Shu thought this was a fortuitous sign, and declared himself Emperor of Chengja. He founded the city and called himself the White Emperor. 

Another legend of the white emperor city in China is about the Three Kingdoms. It is said that during the Three Kingdoms period, Liu Bei, the king of Shu, retreated from a disastrous war to White Emperor City and died here in distress. On his deathbed, Liu entrusted state affairs and his son to Prime Minister Zhuge Liang. In White Emperor City, Zhuge Liang built the famous Observing Stars Pavilion (Guanxing Ting), which is the place he observed the stars and developed the strategy of using arms. During the Ming Dynasty, the statue of Gongsun Shu in Baidi Temple was replaced by new ones for Liubei and Zhuge Liang.

What to See at  White Emperor City

For the shore excursion to White Emperor City, you will take a coach directly from the dock to Baidi Temple in a 20 minutes’ drive. The whole excursion will take about two hours.

Tuogu Hall

Tuogu Hall (Entrusting Son’s Hall) is the most attractive one. In the Three Kingdoms Period (220 - 280), the first emperor of the Shu Kingdom, Liu Bei, failed in the battle with the Wu Kingdom at White Emperor City. He became ill and entrusted his son to his prime minister, Zhuge Liang before closing his eyes. Now, the hall exhibits the statues which depict the scene of Liu Bei entrusting his son to Zhuge Liang. 

Mingliang Palace

Mingliang Palace is where the statue of GongsunShu was once sacrificed by the people. In the Ming Dynasty, the statue was replaced by those of Liu Bei, Guan Yu, Zhangfei and Zhuge Liang.

Stele Forest

Other relics housed in Baidi Temple are a Stele Forest, ancient suspended wooden coffins, painting and calligraphy works by celebrities of different dynasties.

Observing Stars Pavilion (Guanxing Pavilion)
It is the place where Zhu Geliang observed the stars and developed the tactic of using arms.

How to Get to White Emperor City
You can choose any ship of Victoria Cruises, New Century Cruises or OTC Victoria Cruises. Both upstream and downstream cruises of these companies offer a shore excursion to White Emperor City.

Tickets: 80 Yuan, Cable Car: 20 Yuan

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