Beijing and China Tour Expert

Sacred Way

  • Stretcheing 7 kilometers from south to north through the center of the Ming tombs, Sacred Way is the main road leading to the mausoleum area. Stone Statues are composed of 24 stone animals followed by 12 stone human figures along the Sacred Path.


  • ID : 123
  • City : beijing
  • English name : Sacred Way
  • Chinese name : 神路
  • Type : Ancient Mausoleum,
  • Level : easy
  • Kids : possible
  • Elders: possible
  • Best season : all year round
  • Visiting length : 1-2 hours
  • Distance to city center : 40 km

Introduction of Sacred Way

  • The Sacred Way stretches 7 kilometers from south to north through the center of the Ming tombs area. It was originally built for the first tomb Changling - the tomb of Emperor Yongle, the most powerful emperor in the Ming dynasty. But as the later tombs were built either to the right or to the left, it became the main road to all of them. They formed one group, but each tomb is independent of the other. Each lies at the foot of a hill.

Photo of Sacred Way

  • The photo of Sacred Way covers the Sacred Road, Stone Statues as well as travelers in the attraction.
  • Sacred Way photo

Highlights of visiting Sacred Way

    Marble Archway, Great Palace Gate, Tablet Tower, Stone Statues, Dragon-phoenix Gate

Helper to visit Sacred Way

  • Address in English : Changchi Road, Shisanling Town, Changping District, Beijing, China
  • Address in Chinese : 北京市昌平区十三陵镇昌赤路
  • Tel : +8610-60761424
  • Post code : 102200
  • Ticket time : 8:00-14:30
  • Open time : 8:00 - 17:30(April 1st - October 31st ), 8:30 - 17:00(November 1st - March 31st)
  • Closing time : null
  • Location : Sacred Way is around 40 km to downtown beijing


  • Public bus: Bus 314, 872, 878, 879, 925, Changping 55, Changping 32(Nanxincun Station)
  • Subway: Take Subway Changping Line, get off at Dongguang Station and change bus 314.
  • Private car is the best method to visit Sacred Way with local tour operator.


  • high season : 30 RMB/person.
  • shoulder season : 30 RMB/person.
  • low season : 30 RMB/person.

Sacred Way Tour

Please send us an email if you can not find Sacred Way tour you need on this page. We can tailor a private trip to Sacred Way.

Hotel near Sacred Way

  • 5 star/duluxe hotel
  • Beijing Marriott Hotel Changping
  • 4 star/superior hotel
  • Sinopec Conference Center
  • Auspicious Business Hotel
  • 3 star/comfort hotel
  • JI Hotel (Beijng Changping Longshui Road)
  • Naturetime Hotel

Question or Comment

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    • Main interests of Sacred Way
    • Marble Archway(Shipaifang) Marble archway, a memorial structure also called Shipaifang, was built in 1540 and is still in excellent condition. The Marble archway is 29 meters wide and supported by six marble pillars with beautiful relief carvings of dragons and clouds, lions and lotus flowers.
      Marble archway was erected to promote feudal virtues or served as a symbol of meritorious deeds. The Sacred Path used to pass beneath the Marble Archway.
    • Great Palace Gate (Dagongmen) The Great Palace Gate was the main entrance to the tomb area, built in 1426. There used to be a 40 kilometer-long (24.8-mile-long) wall stretching out from this Great Palace Gate and surrounding the cemetery.
      The Great Palace Gate has three passageways: the central one was for the deceased emperor only and the living emperors who went to pay respects to their ancestors used the side passages.
      As a forbidden place, no one was allowed to cultivate the land, cut the wood in this area, or take away stone or soil from this area. Nobody could enter the Great Palace Gate on horseback. Two stone tablets, each placed on one side of the gate, are inscribed with the words Officials and others shall dismount here. The emperor and court officials had to get off their horses or palanquins at this site.
    • Tablet Tower (Beiting) Tablet Tower was built in 1435 with a white marble column standing on each corner near it, enhancing the solemnity of the place. A huge tablet, 7.9 meters in height, is placed on the back of a stone tortoise in the middle of the Tablet Tower.
      The front side of the tablet was inscribed with the words: Divine Merits and sagely virtues of Changling of the Great Ming and an inscription of about 3000 Chinese characters by the fourth Ming Emperor was also carved on the tablet which recorded his father, Emperor Yongle’s expedition to Nanjing, moving the capital to Beijing, and his battles in the desert north of the Great Wall. On the other three sides the inscriptions were written by the Qing Emperor Qianlong (reigned 1796-1820) recording to their visits to the Ming Tombs.
    • Stone Statues Stone Statues are composed of 24 stone animals followed by 12 stone human figures along the Sacred Path. The Stone Statues are also called Shixiangsheng in Chinese. They serve as ceremonial guards. This custom began in the Qin Dynasty (221-206) and the Han Dynasty (206BC-220AD).
      The procession of the Stone Statues starts with four lions, four xiezhi (mythical beasts), four elephants, four camels, four qilin (mythical beasts) and four horses. In each group, one pair is standing while the other kneeing.
      Each one of the Stone Statues is carved out of a single piece of stone and the biggest one occupies a space of up to 30 cubic meters, including the pedestal. They represent the best sculptural craftsmanship of the Ming Dynasty.
    • Dragon-phoenix Gate At the end of the avenue of statues is the Dragon-phoenix Gate envisaged in a legend. Emperors believed that by going through this Dragon-phoenix Gate, their souls would rise to the paradise.
      Beyond the Dragon-phoenix Gate are the paths leading to separate tombs.
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