The Summer Palace - Yihe Yuan

Friday, 2 November 2007

I am ashamed to admit that it took us 2.7 years of living in Beijing before we finally got around to seeing the Summer Palace.

What a glorious place. Meandering, huge, delicately, intricately done. Dragon boats on the water, shady trees, long walkways, misty views across the lake. If you get to Beijing, you must make an effort to go.

This is the quaintly adorable Suzhou Street, named, I'm sure, after the town of Suzhou near Shanghai, which is known as the Venice of China. The water was like a mirror. We loved it here, even if we did have to grip the children with vice-like fingers for fear of them plunging into the mirror.

The famed "marble" boat which is actually made of wood. Empress Cixi used to take smooth summery rides on this boat, sipping tea and admiring the luxurious environs of the Palace grounds.

Here is a picture of me with my daughter Ella.

I'm currently working on a children's book manuscript that features my black and white photography of Beijing. I will be using photos from the Summer Palace in the book.
Footnote: Riley and the Sleeping Dragon was published in November 2008.

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