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Entrance of Changchun Garden in Summer Palace opens to tourists

The restored gate of Changchun Garden in Yuanmingyuan, also known as the Summer Palace, opened to tourists on Oct. 18 in northwest Beijing.

Peoples Daily (2016.mb.com.ph)

Peoples Daily (2016.mb.com.ph)

Yuanmingyuan was once a resort for the imperial families of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). It was pillaged and burned by British and French troops in 1860 during the Second Opium War. As one of three gardens in Yuanmingyuan, Changchun Garden contains several important relics.

Built in 1747, the gate of Changchun Garden used to be the entrance used for emperors; on the gate there is even a plaque inscribed by the Qianlong emperor. In front of the gate stand several bronze kylins, an animal found in Chinese mythology.

A spokesperson for Yuanmingyuan explained that only 20 percent of the underground remains have been excavated. Ongoing archaeological work will continue to bring these relics back to life, making them available to curious tourists.

Oct. 18 is the 156th anniversary of the destruction of Yuanmingyuan. The park announced that entrance will be free to tourists every year on Oct. 18, so that future generations can remember the importance of history.