Heavy fog masked much of the half hour bus trip from Handan city in Hebei province to Guangfu ancient town.
It is a typical northern Chinese ancient town surrounded by an artificial river. Several newly rebuilt bridges span the river and connect the town with the outside world. The city wall stands ten meters tall on the other end of the bridges, showing authority and power which can't be violated. After your Beijing tour package, you could pay a visit to Guanggu as an extension, which would be a great idea for your travel.
The original wall was built in the Tang Dynasty with clay, and reinforced in the following years. The sturdiest part of the wall was made of sticky rice and lime in the Yuan Dynasty. It has withstood more than 800 years with minimal repair. With hundreds of years' weathering, most bricks have ragged edges from erosion. These old bricks have witnessed the transitions of the town for more than 1,000 years.
The town's layout and architecture dates back to the Ming Dynasty. Basic elements, such as the four streets, eight lanes and 72 corners are still kept well. However, most ancient houses have been replaced by newly built ones. These ordinary buildings with white tile walls stand out in this 2,600-year-old town. This kind of travel experience is totally different from the ones along your Shang tour package, which pay much attention to the peaceful atmosphere discovery.
The residence of Wu Yuxiang, a Tai Chi Chuan master, was built in the late Qing Dynasty and well preserved. The house is composed of three courtyard residences and a rectangular yard. Graphics of Tai Chi Chuan movements have been carved on the walls around the yard. Wu once taught more than 100 students here. Now, it is open to the public as a museum of Wu-style Tai Chi Chuan.
Climb up the city wall and look into the distance -- there is a huge swamp covering a total area of 30 square kilometers to the south of the town. A Tai Chi-themed park will be built in the swamp in the near future. To the north, old residences have been pulled down, and a large amount of pseudo-classic buildings are under construction in an attempt to reproduce the original appearance of Guangfu. Although built in the traditional style, these shining buildings are too young to tell the story of Guangfu town. However, locals report that these buildings have been sold out. Soon, restaurants, inns and stores will be opened here. China vacation deals to Hebei is imperfect without visiting the Guangfu village, which is really a must-have for your Hebei travel.
A gust of chilly wind raised a dust cloud from the construction site nearby, with a white plastic bag dancing along the street with the wind. An old peddler, wrapped up in his scarf, waited beside his stall at the entrance of the town.
Welcome to FC2!