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Yang Guifei in Huaqing Pool

 2014-01-22    Ada    Tours    Xian    1312  

Huaqing Pool or the Huaqing Hot Springs are a complex of hot springs located in an area characterized by mild weather and scenic views at the northern foot of Mount Li, one of the three major peaks of the Qin Mountains. Situated at the northern foot of Mt. Lishan in Lintong County, 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) from Xian City, Huaqing Hot Spring (also called Huaqing Pool) is famed for both its dainty spring scenery and the romantic love story of Emperor Xuanzong (685-762) and his concubine Yang Guifei in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). Its long history and location among the wonderful landscapes should entice any visitor to visit and take a bath here.

The first pleasure to experience is to have a bath in the imitational Guifei Pool. With an even temperature of 43 degree, the ever-flowing water here contains minerals and organic materials that have therapeutic effects on the skin. Water originating from four spring reaches a discharge level of 112 tons per hour. In the bath pool, you can experience the same comfort as did the Emperor Xuanzong or Yang Guifei.

The site also features a long documented history of almost three millennia, having served as the location for several palaces built during the reigns of past Chinese dynastic rulers, including King You of the Zhou Dynasty, Qin Shi Huang of the Qin Dynasty, and an expanded version by Wu Han of the Han Dynasty. It was built in 723 by Emperor Xuanzong of the Tang Dynasty as part of the Huaqing Palace, using the locally-occurring geothermal heating, and is famous as the supposed scene of Xuanzong's romance with his consort Yang Guifei. This site was also the scene of the 1936 Xi'an Incident, when Chiang Kai-shek was kidnapped by former warlord Zhang Xueliang and forced to participate in a United Front with the Chinese Communist Party to oppose Japanese encroachment on China.

Under the Tang emperors Taizong and Xuanzong, the palace structure was rebuilt and renamed the Huaqing Palace. However, during the events associated with the An Lushan rebellion, considerable damage was done to the site. Nevertheless, the historical legacy of the Huaqing pools has received lasting commemoration, such as in the following mention of Emperor Xuanzong and Yang in Bai Juyi's poem "Song of Everlasting Regret".

Huan Garden is the former garden of the Huaqing Palace. There lie the Lotus Pavilion, Viewing Lake Tower (Wanghu Lou), Flying Rainbow Bridge (Feihong Qiao), Flying Glow Hall (Feixia Ge), and Five-Room Hall (Wujian Ting). You will see lotus floating on the water and emitting sweet fragrance, and a white marble statue of Yang Guifei - recognized as one of the four most beautiful women in ancient China - stands tall by the lake like a shy and appealing fairy in the Lotus Pavilion.In popular legend, the Flying Glow Hall was once the place where Yang Guifei would overlook the scenery and cool down her long hair. The magnificent Frost Flying Hall used to be the bedroom of Emperor Xuanzong and Yang Guifei, with red supporting pillars and fine-patterned carving. Living in a place so full of spice must have made the inhabitants invigorated and pleased.

By visiting this site, you will not only enjoy the scenery, but also taste the joy of imagining yourself back to the Tang Dynasty.

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