S: China,, my beautiful mother land. Nian-yi Chen
BC: Thousand-Island Lake
FC: Nian-yi Chen
1: Beijing The Capital of China Beijing (meaning northern capital) is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China. Formerly romanized as Peking, Beijing has been the heart of China’s history for centuries. The city has been renamed several times in its history, and was given the name Beijing in 1403 by the third emperor of the Ming Dynasty.
2: Qian-Men, The Front Gate of the Forbidden City
3: Forbidden City Built in the 15th century, the Forbidden City served as the imperial palace for the Ming and Qing Dynasties for almost 500 years. It is located in the middle of the city of Beijing and now houses the Palace Museum. The palace complex consists of 980 buildings and covers 7,800,000 sq ft. The Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987.
4: A lion statue guarding the Forbidden City
5: Inside The Forbidden City: The Emperor's Chair
6: The Forbidden City is surrounded by 10m high walls and a 52m wide moat.
7: One of the gates to the Forbidden City
8: Qi-nian-dian Or pronounced as Tian-tan - Temple of Heaven or Altar of Heaven. The Temple of Heaven was was constructed from 1406 to 1420 and was visited by the Emperors of the Ming and Qing Dynasties in annual ceremonies to pray for good harvest of the upcoming year.
9: Di-tan - Temple of Earth The Temple of Earth was built in Ming Dynasty. Emperors of the Ming,and Qing dynasties used the Temple for sacrifices which were to appease the gods, who in turn would help the nation. These sacrifices took place during the summer solstice.
10: The Old City Wall of Ming Dynasty
11: Tian-an-men Square
12: The Royal Summer Palace of the Qing Dynasty
13: Great Wall Many dynasties throughout Chinese history actively built walls in Northern China (especially near Beijing) to protect against invasions by nomadic groups. The most famous part of Great Wall was built in the Qin Dynasty (220-206 BC) by the first Emperor, Qin Shi Huang. Among many historical ruins, the wall built during the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644) is the most often seen and best preserved, running over 373 miles through 9 provinces and containing 71 passes and countless towers. The famous Great Wall sections near Beijing are the Ba-da-ling, Ju-yong-guan, Mu-tian-yu, and Si-ma-tai walls. The above photo is a part of the Si-ma-tai Great Wall. | Location of the Great Wall
14: Mu-tian-yu Great Wall
15: Cannon Hole on one of the towers of Great Wall
16: Si-ma-tai Great Wall
17: Chengde is a small town in He-bei province where Empress Dowager Cixi's built her second Summer Palace outside of Beijing.
18: A man-made lake in the Chengde Summer Palace
19: Buddha Temple
20: Chengde Buddha Temple
21: Bronze Bells at The Temple
22: Chengde Buddha Temple (this and next pages)
23: Temple Band
24: Little Potala Palace (another Buddha temple in Chengde) (The original Potala Palace is in Tibet)
25: An acrobat actress in practice. Here, she is catching and balancing a stack of bowls atop her head while riding a unicycle. | Simulated Ancient Town in Chengde
26: Xi'An Xi'An is the capital of Shan-xi province and one of the oldest cities in China. With more than 3,100 years of history, the city was known as Chang'an before the Ming Dynasty. Xi'an is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China, having held the position in several important dynasties in Chinese history, including Zhou, Qin, Han, Sui, and Tang. Xi'an is also the eastern terminus of the Silk Road and home to the Terracotta Army.
27: Ancient City Wall (Ming Dynasty) of Xi'an
28: Terracotta Army- the underground troop discovered in the tomb of Qin Shi Huang (Emperor of Qin Dynasty)
29: Qianling Mausoleum is a Tang Dynasty (618–907) tomb site located in the northwest of Xi'an. The tomb complex (hill in the photo, currently unexplored) houses the remains of Emperor Tang Gaozong (r. 649 –83) and his wife, Wu Zetian who was China's first (and only) governing empress of Zhou Dynasty. The mausoleum is renowned for its many Tang Dynasty stone statues located above ground and the mural paintings adorning the subterranean walls of the tombs.
30: Left: One important architecture in Qianling Mausoleum is this 3.6 m tall 'Uncharactered Stele' built to commemorate Wu Zetian, first governing empress in Chinese history. Unlike other grave stones, it has no written inscriptions. Perhaps the Empress was aware of her disputable reputation and wished for history to give her a conclusion. | Right: Stone statues of foreign ambassadors in Qianling Mausoleum , now headless.
31: Cave dwelling, still being used today in the suburb of Xi'an | Xi'an at night: what a contrast!
32: Hang-zhou A major tour city located in Eastern China, formerly transliterated as Hangchow. Hangzhou is also the capital and largest city of Zhejiang Province.
33: The West Lake in Hangzhou, is one of the most romantic places and famous attractions in Eastern China. This bridge is named the Broken Bridge.
34: West Lake Swans
35: The West Lake
36: Happy Boater
38: Dawn over West Lake
39: West Lake Dusk
40: Historical house from the early 20th century | Countryside of Hangzhou
41: The West Lake
42: Huzhou A garden city in Zhejiang Province, 75 km (47 miles) from the capital, Hangzhou.
44: Moganshan (Mt. Mo-gan)
45: Country Church in Huzhou | Bible and Hymn
46: Shao-xing A historical city in Zhejing province (40 km south to Hanzhou). Although small, Shaoxing has a rich cultural history and has produced many famous poets and scholars, including Lu You (1125 - 1210), a poet of Song Dynasty and Lu Xun (1881-1936). | East Lake is a major attraction in Shaoxing.
47: East Lake is a major attraction in Shaoxing city. Black awning boat (a wooden boat with bamboo top painted in black) was a transportation tool in the old China. They are now used as tour boats.
48: Shanghai The earliest developed and largest city of China, located on the east coast of the country. Shanghai was one of the earliest cities opened to foreign trade in 19th century. It developed into the center of commerce between east and west in the 1930s. Known as the Paris of the East in early 20th century, Shanghai is more like New York in the Far East today. As one of the major metropolitan centers of the world, Shanghai's population has recently hit 23 million.
49: Top: Shanghai Art Museum Left: Yu-yuan, the old town
50: Shanghai Streets
51: Yu-yuan - The Old Town of Shanghai
52: Night Shanghai
53: Modern And Traditional Shanghai
54: Catholic Church on Sheshan (Suburb of Shanghai)
55: Xi-Tang - A Historical Town Near Shanghai Xitang is one of six ancient towns south of the Yangtze River. It is located in the middle of Shanghai, Hangzhou and Suzhou (within 100km from each). The major difference between Xitang and other ancient water towns is its ceilinged corridors beside the river, which are like those found in the Summer Palace. The streets with the town's shops are built along the river. In the past, farmers and businessmen in water towns used the river as a street and boats as their vehicles. Much business was done on the boats or banks.
56: The Old Town River: It runs through the ancient town of Xitang.
58: Old Town Musician | Chess Game | "Got'a!"
62: Tea House on The River
64: Riverside Lodging
65: Dawn over Xi-tang
66: Huangshan (Yellow Mountain in An-hui Province) The Huangshan mountain range, formed 100 million years ago, consists of many peaks, some more than 1,000 meters (3,250 feet) high. Huangshan is one of the three most famous mountains in China. Its scenery has been the frequent subject of poetry and artwork, especially Chinese ink painting, and, more recently, photography. Overall, from the Tang Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty, over 20,000 poems were written about Huangshan, and a school of painting was named after it.
67: The "Welcoming Pine" - A land mark of Yellow Mountain Wind gives the trees on Yellow Mountain their special shapes.
70: Huangshan Sunrise
73: The West-Sea Canyon
75: The Author walking through the West Sea Valley
77: The Fish Rock
79: Photo by Wanda Tao
80: Steps on the Cliff
82: In the end of the journey, we had to take the sedan-chair to get down the mountain. | Steep Steps
83: Jade Valley in at the foot of Huangshan (Yellow Mountain)
84: Tun-Xi A town at the foot of the Yellow Mountain, the gateway to the mountains. This is a historical town in An-hui province. The street named "The Old Street" has been the center of commerce for the area for more than 500 years. The typical commercial goods for trading here are tea leaves and art products such as the ink painting of the mountains).
85: Hong-cun An ancient village on water at the foot of the Yellow Mountain in Anhui Province. The village was founded during the Song Dynasty in the early 15th century, and has still preserved to a remarkable extent the appearance of non-urban settlement. The two neighboring villages, Xi-di and Hongcun, have been listed as World Heritage sites since 2000.
86: Village on Water
87: Early Morning
88: Morning of the Village
89: Night of the Village
90: Giant Tea Cattle
91: Half-Moon Pond: the center of the village
92: Village On Water
93: Dawn of Half-moon Pond
95: World Heritage
97: Modern vs. Traditional | Local Artiest
98: Sanya A beautiful coastal city in Hai-nan Province, the very south of China.
99: Sunset of The Heart
100: Miao Tribe Living
101: Miao Tribe Dancing | Beautiful and friendly Miao tribe girl
102: Sanya Beach
103: Sanya Beach
105: Xiamen A coastal city in Fujian Province. Located in southeast China across the straits from Taiwan.
106: Xiamen Sunset
107: Wuyi Mountains in Fu-jiang Province
108: Jiu-qu-xi, the Nine-Turns River, which runs through the Wuyi Mountains.
110: Li-jiang in Yun-nan Province Yun-nan is a province located in the southwest of the country. The province borders Burma, Laos, and Vietnam.
111: Lovely Old Town of Li-jiang
112: White Water River outside the town of Lijiang
113: Fetching fish for lunch
114: Lijiang Countryside | The silt in the water from nearby glaciers gives the river its blue color and kills the vegetation in it.
115: Yu-long (Jade Dragon) Snow Mountain (Glacier) is about 5500 m high and is located about 30 km from the town of Lijiang. Its water runs into the Jin-sha River.
116: Shangri-la | Shangri-la (in northwest Yunnan province) is one of the ten Tibetan autonomous prefectures in the country.
117: Mountain Village | Friendly Tibetan Tour Guide | Tibetan Shop
118: Tibetan Ladies
119: Tibetan Dancers | Tibetan Pilgrimage White Tower
120: Jin-sha-jian (Jian-sha River), upper part of Yangtze River that runs through Yunnan province | Tiger-Leaping Gorge
121: Thousand-Turtle Mountain in Liming County, Yunnan Province
122: Qu-fu A historical city in Shan-dong Province, located about 200 km from the capital Ji-nan. Qufu was an ancient town where the ancient Chinese scholar/ philosopher, Confucius (Kong, Zi in Mandarin) (551-477 BC) was born and where his school and temple were established.
123: Confucius Temple (built in 478 BC after the death of Confucius)
124: Confucius' Home The last resident of Confucius' home was Kong Te-ch'eng (1920- 2008), a 77th generation descendant of Confucius. He was the final person to be appointed Duke of Yan-sheng and the Sacrificial Official to Confucius in Taiwan. T. Kong (inserted above) left mainland China for Taiwan when the president of China's National Party, Jiang Kai Shek, fled to Taiwan in 1949.
125: Confucian Family Graveyard | Confucius' Home | Eaves Animals
126: Cheng-du Chengdu is a mid-sized city in the central part of China in Sichuan province, "the land of abundance". It has a very rich cultural heritage, including an ancient river dam/irrigation system and temples in memory of Zhuge Liang, an ancient war strategist in the Three Kingdoms period.
127: An ancient bridge at Dujiang Yan (Dujiang Dam) which is an irrigation system built in 475-221BC and which still functions today.
128: The entry way to the temple on Mt. Qingcheng, which was built in memory of Li Bing and his son for building the Dujiang irrigation system (475-221 BC). The irrigation system successfully controlled the flooding of Mingjiang River and turned the Sichuan area into the so-called "land of heaven".
129: About The Book And The Photographer China is a country with immense geographic and cultural diversity. With a long history of more than 5,000 years, the early development of its civilization has generated world wonders such as Great Wall (in Beijing) and the Terracotta Army (in Xian). Although Han nationality forms the majority in Chinese culture, many minorities, like the Tibetan, Yi, Miao, and Bai, among others, live in the northern, western and southern areas of China and continue to preserve their ethnic cultures. The broad land of China has a breathtaking landscape that has cultivated generations of poets and painters, as well as their unique schools of Chinese arts. Nian-yi Chen, a Chinese American born in Shanghai, China, has traveled numerous times between the United States and China in the past decades, and has visited and photographed more than fourteen different cities and areas of China. This book is a collection of the photographs that reflect the beauty of her motherland and the lives and cultures of her Chinese country fellows. | Nian-yi Chen on Yellow Mountain. Photo by Wanda Tao | Acknowledgment The author would like to thank Wanda Tao for the photographs she contributed to this book and for her friendship and companionship during their trip to the Yellow Mountain and Hongcun. The author also wishes to thank her husband, Wen Chen, for his tremendous contribution to this book, and her daughter, Cynthia Chen, for her editing and proofreading efforts.