Tian Tan (Temple of Heaven)

Visited the Temple of Heaven after running a few errands, which included picking a few more pieces of jewelry that I’d been waiting on, including this ring with the clouded rubies and emeralds.  I’m usually the kind of girl that goes for a stone with a high clarity, but with this piece the cloudy stones suits the design.

so after a third trip to Shard Box (quickly becoming my favorite little shop to visit ) and a quick run into the pearl shop I was ready to see some more of what Beijing had to offer.  Enter TianTan or The Temple of Heaven, used by the emperors of China in annual ceremonies to the heavens for a good harvest.  The complex is quite large, our driver dropped me off at the South Gate  and picked my up at the East Gate, I spent almost an hour wandering around the southern and eastern sections.  TianTan is on UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites, a title well deserved and much more probable than the Ming Tombs claim to also being a World Heritage site.  The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests sits at the very center of the complex, a beautiful, colorful circular building.

Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests

Along the outer perimeter of the multiple halls are pathways with vendors, daily walkers and families.  You must pay admission to enter some areas, but the majority of the complex is a walking park, with trees, and benches and open space grassy areas.  It reminds me of a cross between the National Mall and Versailles, minus the mass amounts of pollutants filling the air.  The last few days here have been pretty bad, I think I got lucky, the first few weeks were primarily blue skies above.  I’m really starting to get a feel for what the air quality is really like here.

In any case I think I’d like to go back just to walk around in the spring when everything is alive again.


*** we drove past the Birds Nest and The Water Cube the other day.


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