In case if you do not know, Summer Palace refers to both the Old Summer Palace (also known as Yuanming Yuan) and the Summer Palace (also known as Yihe Yuan). Both the palaces are located next to each other northwest of Beijing city center. The Old Summer Palace had suffered 2 major invasions before, namely the Anglo-French allied invasion in 1860 and the 8 power allied force invasion in 1900. It survived and was rebuilt.
Today, the Summer Palace is widely referred to the former Garden of Clear Ripples constructed in 1750 during the Manchu Qing Dynasty by Emperor Qianlong. The garden was first built in celebration of the emperor mother’s 60th birthday. The Garden of Clear Ripples was renamed to Yihe Yuan by Emperor Guangxu in 1888. The Summer Palace has a total area of 2.9 square kilometers and consists of a 60-meter high Longevity Hill and the Kunming Lake. On the Longevity Hill, one could find Hall of Dispelling Clouds, Hall of the Sea of Wisdom, Tower of Buddhist Incense and many other structures of Qing Dynasty architectural styles. The Kunming Lake, meanwhile is a large man made lake built to resemble the West Lake in Hangzhouo.
Yihe Yuan – the Summer Palace in Beijing
The Summer Palace in Beijing was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998.