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Cuandixia Village

Cuan_Dixia.jpg

Introduction
Cuandixia is a historic village dating from the Ming dynasty located in Mentougou District in Beijing.It is a popular tourist attraction known for its well preserved courtyard homes.It is famous because it has a history of 400 years during the Ming Dynasty. At that time, ancestors of this hamlet migrated from Shan Xi, a province is the west of Beijing, to this place. It is a stronghold in the way from Beijing to Shan Xi.

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History of Cuandixia Village
Cuandixia was founded during the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) by members of the Han clan who moved from Shanxi Province.Towards the end of the Qing Dynasty Cuandixia prospered from trading in coal, fur, and grain.

The Origin of the Name
There are many legends about the village's name. The most convincing one is that the village was located below an important military pass, Cuanli'an Pass, hence the name Cuandixia, meaning village below Cuanli'an Pass. Another legend has it that Cuan (爨) in ancient Chinese means stove; the villagers named their dwelling as 'a place under stove' to help them stay away from coldness. All villagers' surnames are Han (韩), a Chinese character homophonic with the character 寒, which means coldness; their ancestors gave them the name to defend against the cold days.

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Location of Cuandixia Village
Cuandixia is located on ancient post road roughly 90 km northwest from central Beijing in the Jingxi mountain region.The village is served by National Road 109 and can be reached via bus number 929 which departs from Pingguoyuan subway station. Travel from central Beijing takes about three hours by car.


Highlights of Cuandixia Village
Courtyards
The village layout merging with the slopes is quite orderly and harmonic.About 70 various and flexible courtyards were built one by one following the terrain of the slopes.The houses were built with natural stones and wood,the steep stairs and streets paved by the rocks are all simple,natural and colorful.The poetic landscape,the ancient architecture,the emotional carvings and antithetical couplets all express the villager's love of beauty and the desiring for culture.The environments,where the villagers have inhabited,ploughed and enjoyed themselves for generations are full of serenity,just like "a Land of Peach Blossoms".In this village,the beauty of nature,artifacts and society have been combined to a unity,producing and idyllic drawing full of vitality.It reflects the traditional concepts of harmony between"human and nature","human and human","human and society".

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Live Fossil - Rare Value of Cuandixia Village
Chuandixia village has the rare value as the "live fossil".It records the historical development,the intelligence and practicing of the ancestor during the construction of the village.Historical relics from different periods have been reserved.


Information
Admission: CNY35 (including Cuandixia Village, Baiyu Village, Yixiantian, Shuangshitou, and Huanglingxi)

Opening Hours: Full day

Best time to Visit: Spring & Summer

How to get there:
Take Subway Line 1 to Pingguoyuan Station. Then take bus 892 and get off at Zhaitang Station. Next, take a taxi or carpool with others to reach the entrance. The taxi fare is around CNY 20 - 30.

From Cuandixia Village, there are buses returning to Zhaitang Station, leaving at 06:50, 09:40 and 15:35. Upon arrival at Zhaitang, take bus 892 back to Pingguoyuan Subway Station.

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