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Ancient Cliff House

Updated:2008-06-06 10:34 | Source:

  It is located in the valley to the northwest

  of Yanqing County. Route: Go along the Badaling

  Expressway to Yanqing County, and then change the

  bus to arrive at it. It is now the largest cliff

  residence site found in North China.

  The ancient cliff houses were digged by some unknown

  ancestors on steep cliffs. There are altogether 147

  stone rooms, divided into front, middle and rear

  parts, hanging on the cliffs of about 100,000 square

  meters. The stones rooms have various shapes and

  positions. In the shape of square or rectangle, some

  big rooms are about 20 square meters, while some

  small ones are about three to four square meters.

  Some have single rooms, while some have two or three

  rooms; the flats have parallel rooms or rooms in two

  layers. All stone rooms are distributed in different

  layers, with stone steps, stone stairs and plank

  roads connecting each other. There are complete sets

  of life facilities including doors, windows, Kang

  (heatable adobe bed), kitchen ranges, mangers,

  closets, flues, and storage rooms. The windows are

  usually two to three square chi (one third of a

  meter). The doors are in different sizes. The four

  corners of windows and doors all have symmetrical

  holes of axis. Sinks are cut in the front eaves,

  maybe for the purpose of fetching water. These stone

  rooms have different functions. Some are bedrooms,

  some look like kitchen, and some seem to be used for

  raising horses. There are two kinds of stone kang.

  One is directly dug on the granite, without smoke

  chimney under it; another is curved, with stone

  slate or adobes on it. There are kitchen ranges dug

  on one side of the stone kang, with twisted smoke

  chimneys leading to the outside of the stone rooms.

  One stone house is a typical three-room apartment.

  One big room with door looks like the parlor; the

  room on the right side is the kitchen, with stone

  kitchen range and smoke channel; the room on the

  left side has a closet. Guantangzi is typical of all

  the stone rooms, which is in the middle of the

  mountain range, like a palace in ancient times. It

  is not only high and spacious and has a good

  daylighting, but also has delicate carvings. There

  are four stone pillars supporting the roof of the

  cave. In the middle of the four pillars, there is a

  wide Buddha niche, with two small bedrooms dug on

  both sides. The stone rooms here are complicated in

  structure and delicate in design. There is no

  accurate record about its age, history, background

  and usage, so it is still a myth.

  (Source:

  http://www.ebeijing.gov.cn/Tour/ScenicSpots/)

Editor : Zhu Jia

Opening ceremony of Beijing Olympics