DiSCOVER: Tsinghua University and Summer Palace

Day three opened with our excursion to Tsinghua University. We arrived and met Maggie, a student at the university who escorted us around the university grounds. We explored different parts of the campus and saw other youth summer camps also touring Tsinghua. Afterwards, we viewed From Monet to Soulages: Paths of Modern Western Painting art exhibit at the Tsinghua Art Museum. There were also a few times today that some locals asked to take a picture with me (I guess I’m better looking than I thought :)).

Next up was the Summer Palace getaway. Although the place was destroyed twice back in the day by invaders, the Dragon Lady (China’s only empress) in the past and the people of China today took big efforts to restore the place. My favourite place was the marble stone boat as it was very different from the other displayed sites. In the picture below, the big wheels and stained glass windows were added during the restoration to incorporate the western arts.

My second favourite place is the hike to the Buddhist temple. The view from above was breathtaking. It was definitely worth climbing up those steep stairs with a few huffs and puffs here and there. What I was quite amazed by during this trip so far was the ancient architecture of the Chinese buildings. If you look closely between the rooftop and the buildings, the truss system really helps to stabilize the building and allows it to withstand earthquakes without a single building component breaking off.

 

Authors: Peggy Lee & Darren Cameron

 

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