1. Terracotto Army, a must-see for your China tour deals
Favorite thing: 1>This army of 6000 warriors defends the tomb of the first China Emperor, Shi Huangdi (3° century JC). Each of them is an individual because the heads are made separatly and put on the bodies. The features of each are original and may be true. There are 4 buildings to visit : the Chariots Builing, the Sites 1, 2 & 3. The largest is the Site 2 with the army. IMPORTANT : it is now allowed to take photographes.
2>Before Emperor Qin Shi build his tomb and took thousands of terracotta warriors with him, ist was custom, that emperors had real people, who died with them in their tomb. It had been tombs excavated, which contained women and men, who died from poison or suffocated, after they had been closed into the tomb.
Chinese people beleive, that life after death is similar to live on earth. People and things, they have in their graves, will be of help in their life in heaven.
After Qin Shi the emperors took statues into their tombs, which were much smaller. Today people are burried with paper models of all the luxury, which makes life easy and comfortable.
3>see the Imax movie at the Terra Cotta Army site. We went there last. I recommend that you go there first; then tour the pits and excavations. Do not miss the bronze chariots and riders.
Did you know that the terra cotta soldiers are dug up in broken pieces and shards, then reconstructed in a workshop and returned to the pits after being pieced together?? A real Chinese puzzle.
4>There are several buildings containing the statues. Quite impressive. From Xian (you can start your Silk Road tour ), take a bus to the site. #2) GREAT MOSQUE -Never knew that there was a prominent Muslim population in China. It was fascinating to see this part of China, in Xi'an. #3) OLD XI'AN - Near the Great Mosque. Take some time to walk around the walled portion of the city.
Fondest memory: The main attraction has still to be discovered : the tomb. We already know what we will see : a sarcophagus floating on a river of mercury, in the middle of treasures, with the skeletons of the Emperor's wifes and of the workers (so, the secret is kept), all in a palace. Currently, the tomb is under a hill and the Chinese people wait to have time and means to make the research.
2. Hua Qing Hot Springs (an option for popular China tours)
Favorite thing (from customers): 1>I really enjoyed Huaqingqiao most. My timing was especially appropriate since it was the day they buried Zhang Xueliang in Hawaii, the general who kidnapped Chiang Kai-shek. You oculd see the bullets littering the walls and the signpost that said 'Jiang was captured here' up the hill.
2> From Xian we drove out into the countryside and stopped at this famous hot springs bath. It was built by an emperor for his most favored concubine, Lady Young, for she loved to bathe here. Apparently, this ruler spent so much time doting on his mistress that he let the country slide into ruin. In each of the small buildings is a differently shaped bath.
3>The place is very quiet and relaxing, except when you share the visit with a huge group of tourists. It's a nice garden with many ponds and pagodas. As it's sunday, there are many chinese people walking up and down, and souvenir stalls.
You can consider these tow attractions in your China tour packages.
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