Holidays in Summer Palace

Holiday Travel Guide
Summer Palace featuring heritage elements

This majestic former summer residence of the Qing Dynasty is now a world heritage site and favourite Beijing attraction.

The Summer Palace on the shore of Kunming Lake was built as a retreat in the 1750s by China’s last great ruling dynasty, the Qing. It later became their principal residence and, although it suffered damage during the Second Opium War and the Boxer Rebellion, it has gone on to become one of Beijing’s most-loved attractions.

The 60-metre hill in the middle of Kunming Lake is a stunning location for the magnificent buildings and manicured pavilions that UNESCO describe as “a masterpiece of Chinese landscape garden design”. Along with the remarkable temples, halls and bridges, there is plentiful natural beauty here. In fact, the unique setting and one-of-a-kind architecture led to the palace being declared a world heritage site in 1998.

The entrance to the complex is at the East Palace Gate where you’ll be faced with the Hall of Benevolence and Longevity, which houses ornate furnishings including intricate engravings and bronze sculptures. Further along the north-west shore from here is one of the man-made island’s most remarkable structures: the Boat of Purity and Ease. It has the appearance of a lavish boat but it is in fact a wooden pavilion constructed on a stone base.

The earth that was excavated to create Kunming Lake created Longevity Hill, the foot of which is just a short stroll from the boat. Take a deep breath, then set off up the steep front slope towards the towering Hall of Dispensing Clouds, taking time to admire the symmetrically laid-out buildings on both sides. At the top, you can enter the three-storey Tower of Buddhist Incense for a small additional charge where you’ll find an incredible gold statue of the Buddha with a thousand eyes and hands.

After you’ve admired the view, make your way back down the rear end of the hill which is covered in natural woodland and scattered ruins. The best way to get to the Summer Palace, located in the Haidian district, north-west of Beijing, is via a 30-minute taxi ride as the subway can take twice as long. There is a small charge for admission to the complex.

952 Cheap Hotels Near Summer Palace

Pod Inn
Pod Inn
2.5 out of 5
Building 3, Outside Academy of Military, Sciences, No. 75 Xiangshan Road,, Beijing, Beijing
Located in Haidian, this hotel is 1.3 mi (2.1 km) from Summer Palace and within 6 miles (10 km) of Old Summer Palace and Peking University. Tsinghua University ...
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Pod Inn
Beijing Post Hotel
Beijing Post Hotel
4 out of 5
No. 5 Guajiatun, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
Located in Haidian, this hotel is within 2 miles (3 km) of Tsinghua University, Old Summer Palace and Peking University. Summer Palace and Renmin University ...
3.4/5 Good! (7 reviews)
Solid value near Summer Palace
"This hotel is in the northwest part of Beijing. It is near the Summer Palace, Beijing University, and QingHua University. It is a 10-15 minute walk to two different subway stops (Yuanmingyuan and Xiyuan on line 4). The staff was friendly but did not speak English. The beds were hard, and the shower ..."

Reviewed on 2 Apr. 2018

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Beijing Post Hotel
Garden Hotel - Beijing
Garden Hotel - Beijing
3 out of 5
No.35 Haidian Street, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
Located in Haidian, this hotel is within 3 miles (5 km) of Peking University, Summer Palace and Renmin University of China. Tsinghua University and Beijing Foreign ...
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Garden Hotel - Beijing
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Holidays in Summer Palace

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Top Summer Palace Hotel & Accommodation Deals

Ariva Beijing West Hotel & Serviced Apartment
Ariva Beijing West Hotel & Serviced Apartment
4 out of 5
36 Haidian South Road, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
The price is AU$146 per night from 18 Oct. to 18 Oct.
Ariva Beijing West Hotel & Serviced Apartment
Pod Inn
Pod Inn
2.5 out of 5
Building 3, Outside Academy of Military, Sciences, No. 75 Xiangshan Road,, Beijing, Beijing
Pod Inn
Beijing Post Hotel
Beijing Post Hotel
4 out of 5
No. 5 Guajiatun, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
Beijing Post Hotel
Garden Hotel - Beijing
Garden Hotel - Beijing
3 out of 5
No.35 Haidian Street, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
Garden Hotel - Beijing
FX Hotel BeiJing ZhongGuanCun
FX Hotel BeiJing ZhongGuanCun
3.5 out of 5
No.68 North 4th Ring West Road, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
FX Hotel BeiJing ZhongGuanCun
The Lake View Hotel Beijing
The Lake View Hotel Beijing
4.5 out of 5
No 127 North Street, Zhongguancun, Beijing, Beijing
The Lake View Hotel Beijing
Crowne Plaza Beijing Zhongguancun, an IHG Hotel
Crowne Plaza Beijing Zhongguancun, an IHG Hotel
4.5 out of 5
No.106 Zhi Chun Road, Haidian District, Beijing, Beijing
The price is AU$217 per night from 30 Oct. to 30 Oct.
Crowne Plaza Beijing Zhongguancun, an IHG Hotel
Pod Inn
Pod Inn
No.58 Wanquanhe Road, Beijing, Beijing
Pod Inn
Zhongwan International YAD Apartment
Zhongwan International YAD Apartment
2.5 out of 5
1 Caihefang W Alley, Haidian, Beijing
Zhongwan International YAD Apartment
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.