Fragrant Hills Park
Located 10km (6 miles) west of Beijing and standing
close to 560 meters (1840ft), the Fragrant Hills Park is one of
greater Beijing’s most idyllic spots.
2 big stones lie on its peak and from a distance,
on a mist-shrouded day, it looks much like a three-legged incense
burner. The groves of apricots, peaches, pears and lilacs may also
be reason for the name Fragrant Hills. Visitors to the park can
reach the peak by trekking up the hill or by taking a cable car.
The park was established in 1745, by emperor Qianlong, who
had pavilions, terraces and temples built, trees planted and animals
brought. Much of the manmade beauty still exists in conjunction
with the area’s exquisite natural beauty.
Visitors can view the traditional architecture,
take a stroll around one of the lakes or go for a horseback ride.
The fall is an especially good time to visit - the hills are ablaze
as the Huanglu smoke trees turn a deep shade of red, a sight that
has been celebrated in poetry and painting.