Trip Review for China

Imperial Tombs of the Ming and Qing Dynasties

Comments of the World Heritage Committee

Constructed for the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties (1368-1911) and their ancestors, the tombs follow the precepts of traditional Chinese geomancy and fengshui theory. They constitute the product of human efforts to change the nature, embody the ideology with regard to traditional architecture and decoration, and expound the feudal concept of world outlook and ruling power that lasted for some 500 years.

Brief Introduction

These are the Imperial Tombs of the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties including the Xiaoling Tomb, the Xian-ling Tombs and the Ming Tombs of the Ming Dynasty, the Three Imperial Tombs of the Qing Dynasty in Shengjing (present-day Shenyang), the Eastern Tombs and the Western Tombs of the Qing Dynasty. The main buildings are well preserved and retain a great deal of their original appearance.

The Ming and Qing dynasties were a splendid period for the construction of imperial tombs in the history of China’s feudal society. Zhu Yuanzhang (1328-1398), the founder of the Ming Dynasty, made great reforms of the imperial tombs system. He changed the hillock above the ground from the previous traditional style to a rounded shape, canceled the bedroom palace, and expanded the building for offering sacrifice, thus initiating the imperial tomb style of the Ming and Qing dynasties. After his death, he was buried in the Xiaoling Tomb on the eastern surburb of Nanjing, Jiangsu Province.

Located on the eastern suburbs of Zhongxiang City, Hubei Province, the Xianling Tomb is of the parents of Emperor Jiajing (1507-1566) of the Ming Dynasty. It is a special imperial tomb, because its master did not assume the emperor to be a deity. It was rebuilt from the prince’s tomb by Emperor Jiajing according to the system of imperial tombs prevalent at the time.

The Ming Tombs are located at the foot of Tianshou Mountain, in the northern part of Changping District, Beijing. The construction lasted for more than 230 years, from 1409 when the Changling T< was first built to 1644 when the Ming Dynasty ended and Emp Chongzhen (1611-1644) was buried in the Siling Tomb. It is the g< ral term for the tombs of 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty after 1 moved their capital to Beijing. The Changling Tomb is the lar| covering an area of 120,000 square meters.

The Qing Dynasty followed the system of the Ming Dym but paid more attention to the combination of the tombs with rounding mountains and rivers, and the position within the far of the deceased, thus forming the supporting order of the tomb emperors, empresses and imperial concubines. Its sacrificial sys was also more complete and rational.

Located in Shenyang (of which Shengjing is the old name), Liaoning Province, the Three Imperial Tombs of the Qing Dynasty in Shengjing are the tombs of three Qing emperors who inaugurated Manchurian court, namely, Fuling Tomb, Zhaoling Tomb and Yongling Tomb.

The Eastern Tombs of the Qing Dynasty, located in Zun City, Hebei Province, contain 15 tombs. With a 14,500-meter-long sacred passage, they are the largest with complete system among imperial tombs.

The Western Tombs of the Qing Dynasty, located in Yixian County, Hebei Province, are one of the intact tomb groups in Chi They are the last feudal imperial tombs.

Website of the Xianling Tomb of the Ming Dynasty:

Website of the Eastern Tomb of the Qing Dynasty:

Website of the Western Tomb of the Qing Dynasty:

Website of the Ming Tombs:

Tourist Information



The Ming Tombs can be reached by taking Tour Bus Nos. 1,2 4 or 5 from downtown Beijing.

For visiting the Eastern Tombs of the Qing Dynasty, touri in Beijing can take the Jing-Tong Expressway to the destination, Yanjiao, Sanhe, Jixian, Mashengqiao and Zunhua (turn left for kilometers); or take tourist buses at the Xuanwumen Church.

For visiting the Xiaoling Tomb of the Ming Dynasty, touri can take public bus No. 20 or Tour Bus Nos. 2 or 3 from downto^ Nanjing and get off at the destination.

To the Xianling Tomb of the Ming Dynasty, tourists can tak< special public bus or take a taxi from downtown Zhongxiang.


Other Information

Opening Hours for the Xiaoling Tomb of the Ming Dynasty: 07:00-18:00 Telephone: 0086-25-84431991

Opening Hours for the Xianling Tomb of the Ming Dynasty: Whole day, Telephone: 0086-724-4217387

Opening Hours for the Ming Tombs: Open all year round, but the opening hours vary in different seasons

Telephone of the Dingling Tomb: 0086-10-60761424

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