Chengde Mountain Resort
_We***23"The Mountain Resort was the summer retreat for some of the Qing Emporers and it's scale and beauty definitely speaks of power of the Qing at its height. There is the Palace area which is now a museum with an extre fee to enter, however it is probably worth it. The there is the lakes area which are one of the best parts. Artificial islands house pavilions and palaces which are great for walking around and then having a rest in the shade. To the right of the lakes is the plains area showing the manchurian heritage of the Qing dynasty. This area if just grassland, but at the end there are some Mongolian yurts and a tall pagoda. Then there is the mountain area which takes up most of the space of the resort. This area is sometimes closed (late winter and spring), but the tour bus that races around the mountains is definitely worth it. There are many areas in which you can get off, with the highlight probably being the view of the 'mini potala palace' from the wall. Definitely worthy of its designation as a world heritage site, and worth going, despite the rather steep price (at least for Chinese standards). "