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The Summer Palace and Kunming Lake Trail

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Haidian, Beijing, China

The Summer Palace and Kunming Lake Trail is a 4.7 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Haidian, Beijing, China that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round.

Length 4.7 mi Elevation gain 557 ft Route type Loop

Kid friendly

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Lake

Partially paved

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Description
Waypoints (7)
Contact
Tips

The historic summer retreat of China's emperors. The Summer Palace was the retreat of emperors for centuries, gradually enlarged and repaired after taking beatings in the Second Opium War (1856-60) and the Boxer Rebellion (1900). It's now one of Beijing's best-known tourist destinations, so in the summer it's crowded with visitors looking to catch a breeze around Kunming Lake. The palace is usually empty if you visit in winter, but the biting cold is the price you pay for uninterrupted views.

Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Summer_Palace

The Summer Palace is really easy to get to by subway, the cheapest and most tourist friendly way to get around Beijing. Don't be intimidated by the subway in Beijing-everything (including announcements) is in English and Chinese and is well-marked. Try to avoid rush hour as trains (especially on lines 1 and 2) will be very crowded. It's about a 25-minute journey from Xizhimen station where Line 4 crosses Line 2 as a rough guide. Using the subway ticket machines is pretty intuitive. The touch-screen button for English is in the bottom left corner of the screen. Select the line you need and touch the station you want. You'll then be prompted to confirm the number of tickets and the amount you need to pay. There are maps both on-screen and on the walls to check which line you need. Ticket machines in the subway don't accept 1RMB notes, just the coins. (Renminbi Yuan-usually known as RMB or just yuan-is China's currency.) If you don't have change, or only big notes, go to a ticket window and hand over 2RMB-it's a flat fare for a single ticket (you can't buy returns) wherever you go.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (8)
Photos (76)
Recordings (8)
Completed (28)
Teresa M.
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Walking
Daniel Mitchell
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Walking

I was in Beijing for the weekend, so I took a few friends to visit the Summer Palace. I've been here multiple times, and different times of the year. I must say that if you plan to visit the Summer Palace, the best time to do it is NOT in the summer. Everybody else will have the same idea. There are LOT'S of people who visit in the summer. If you visit, make sure to have your transportation to and from the palace arranged beforehand. You will not be able to catch a taxi anywhere near this place! Plan on getting some walking done at the Summer Palace. There is a scenic lake, with lots of historic buildings. Read up on the history of it before visiting, to maximize your visit. I logged about 4 miles of walking here today - much of it on stairs.

Lisa Henderson
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Hiking
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Alex Huang
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Hiking
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Brad Cochran
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Hiking
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Kathy Z
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Hiking
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Kathy Z
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Hiking
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Kathy Z
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Hiking
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