Zhongdu Site of Yuan Dynasty
Zhongdu, built from the year 1307 AD, was one of the three major towns(the other two was Shangdu which is now Zhenglangqi of Mongolia and Dadu which is now Beijing) in Yuan Dynasty. In the reign of Emperor Yuan Wu-Zong, grandson of the famous Yuan Emperor Yuan Shi-Zu, Hubilie, it took only a year for to complete the construction. As the third largest city in Yuan Dynasty, Zhongdu enjoyed highly respectable political, military and economic importance at the time.
The site of Zhongdu town has been preserved amazingly well with easily identified remains of the Palace where the emperor lived, the administrative region and the general living area. Interestingly each of them was built as a square ring embracing one another with the Palace in the middle. The remains of the walls are about 3 to 4 meters high. Large quantities of cultural relic have been excavated over a year period, including potteries, carvings and instruments made from stones, irons, woods, jade, coppers, and bones. The hornless dragon was the masterpiece among all carvings. It is elegant and delicate. Besides the elephant eye carved on the footpath in front of the palace is particularly attractive and exquisite.
Other excavated sites that have been turned into scenic spots open to visitors are the Audience Hall in the center, the Turret in southwest and the South Gateway. A museum to display many of the invaluable relics of the Yuan Dynasty is under construction and will be available to tourists in no time.