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The Temple of Heaven is situated in the southeastern part of central Beijing (Forbidden City). It is four times larger than the Forbidden City. The complex was visited by the Emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties for annual ceremonies of prayer to Heaven for good harvest. The layout of Altar of Heaven is a Chinese character “回”. The northern part of the park is semicircular in shape while the southern part is square since the ancient Chinese imagined heaven as round and earth as square. The two parts are divided by a wall that has a semi-circular obtrusion in the middle around the Imperial Vault.   The three main constructions of the Temple of Heaven lie on a central north-south axis and are connected by Danbi Bridge. The primary buildings from south to north are The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests, The Imperial Vault of Heaven and The Circular Mound Altar. All the buildings within the Temple have special dark blue roof tiles, representing the Heaven.  The best time to visit this park is spring and autumn because the main plants are grass which fails to prevent tourists from sunstroke in summer. And the park is quite cold in winter. However, winter is a wonderful time for you to appreciate the effect of the acoustic construction (Echo Wall and Three-tone stone). In summer, the park opens at 6 am and closes at 8 pm. You should enter the park as early as you can to avoid lots of tourists.  

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Useful Things for Temple of Heaven

Best Time to Visit Temple of Heaven:

Get up early to see and feel the locals in the park. Though every day the temple and historical buildings within the park are open to the public from 8:00 till 17:00, the park itself opens at 6:00 till 22:00. Many local people have yearly tickets for easy access to the park. Get there about 7:00 or 7:30am, especially on a sunday morning. you will see local people, most of them are middled aged or older people doing various kinds of light physical activity you can imagine, like singing, dancing, playing instruments, playing chess, practicing kung fu, tai chi…

How to get to Temple of Heaven:

If you visit the Temple of Heaven through the east gate, you take subway line 5 to Tiantan Dongmen Station and take exit A. The East Gate entrance is right there. For the public buses to the east gate, you may try bus 6, 35, 36, 39, 41, 43… If you use south gate, you take a taxi or take bus 36, 120, 122, 800, 803, 958

Temple of Heaven Best Routes:

1. Zhaoheng Gate (South Gate) → Circular Mound Altar → South Divine Kitchen → Echo Wall → Imperial Vault of Heaven → Three Echo Stones → Danbi Bridge → East Annex Hall → Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests → West Annex Hall → Palace of Abstinence → Divine Music Administration

2. North Gate → Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests → East Annex Hall → West Annex Hall → Danbi Bridge → Echo Wall → Imperial Vault of Heaven → Three Echo Stones → Danbi Bridge → South Divine Kitchen → Circular Mound Altar → Lingxing Gates → Palace of Abstinence → Divine Music Administration Tikets and Hours of Temple of Heaven: Gate:6:00-22:00

The scenic spots inside the Temple of Heaven:

From March 1 to June 30: 8:00------17:30 From July 1 to October 31: 8:00——18:00 From November 1 to February 28: 8:00——17:00 Entrance ticket: 10 RMB

Tips:

1. There are over 60,000 varieties of tree. The most famous tree is the grandfather tree - a 500-year-old Nine-Dragon Cypress with branches like nine dragons winding with each other. These trees create a quiet environment and an ideal resort for the locals to do their morning exercise. Residents living near the Temple of Heaven enjoy many activities here, such as running, cycling, singing, dancing, playing chess, flying kites, etc. You can become involved personally in these activities and experience the leisure pursuits of local people.

2. Wear Comfortable Shoes. The park is so huge so you are advised to wear your most comfortable shoes. It’s a long walk!

Wonderful Beijing Tours including Visit to Temple of Heaven

Hotels surrounding Temple of Heaven

Jilong Hotel - Beijing

No.91 Tiantan Road, Dongcheng District.(北京市崇文区天坛路91号(天坛公园北门西边))

0.66km

Tiantan Wancheng Hotel

Tiantan Road 89, Beijing

0.66km

Beijing Qianlong Hotel

Tiantan Road 85, Chongwen District, Beijing

0.77km

Reviews of Temple of Heaven

would
recommend

CC

(China)

Feb.03, 2015

"Sooooo Great!"
The temple of heaven is not so crowded as The Summer palace, it has the tranquil landscape, it is a good place to feel royal life!