Tuesday, February 02, 2010
The Temple of Heaven
The Temple of Heaven rates high on the list of Ming Dynasty landmarks that dot Beijing. The temple is actually a series of large halls arranged in an even larger park, and the park itself was in use.
The area near the entrance was filled with mostly older couples dancing the morning away, and seeing the delight and joy on their faces brought a matching smile to my own. So often when traveling you see the great landmarks covered in tourists but not people who actually live there, so it was good to see the park being used by the locals.
One of the major structures is the Hall for Good Harvests, where the emperor would go once a year to offer sacrifices for a good harvest. This was to me the most impressive of the buildings, and it made it into many of my photos.
Really the most fun I had though was at a nearby tourist shop, bargaining down the price of a wall scroll I bought. I'm sure I still overpaid, but since I ended up paying about 8 dollars for it, I figure I can't complain too much!