china edition


Fragrant Hills Park

Located 10 kilometer west of Beijing and standing close to 560 m, the Fragrant Hills Park (Xiangshan Gongyuan) is one of greater Beijing's most idyllic spots.

Fragrant Hills Park2 big stones lie on its peak and from a distance, on a mist-shrouded day; it looks much like a 3-legged incense burner. The groves of apricots, peaches, pears and lilacs may also be reason for the name Fragrant Hills. Visitors to the park can reach the peak by trekking up the hill or by taking a cable car.

The park was established in 1745, by Emperor Qianlong, who had pavilions, terraces and temples built, trees planted and animals brought.

Much of the manmade beauty still exists in conjunction with the area's exquisite natural beauty.

Visitors can view the traditional architecture, take a stroll around one of the lakes or go for a horseback ride. The fall is an especially good time to visit; the hills are ablaze as the Huanglu smoke trees turn a deep shade of red, a sight that has been celebrated in poetry and painting.