Built in 1750 as a summertime playground for the royal family to escape the heat of the city, the Summer Palace is a masterpiece of traditional Chinese landscaping. Centred around Kunming Lake and Longevity Hill, you’ll find a harmonious ensemble of intricate pavilions, halls, palaces, temples and bridges, creating a wonderfully pastoral scene that was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998.
Damaged during the Second Opium War by the Anglo-French army and restored in 1886 with money that had been apparently earmarked for the Navy, the Summer Palace is designed according to the principles of fengshui. Wander up the 60 metre Longevity Hill for great views, and stroll Seventeen Arch Bridge, which stretches across Kunming Lake, to see the impressive marble boat. Not to be missed is the Long Corridor, an intricately decorated walkway that is 700 metres in length.
What better way to experience it than on a Wendy Wu tour?