Beijing Dingdu Pavilion

Beijing Dingduge Pavilion, or Dingdu Pavilion (定都阁) is built on the top of the same name hill known as Dingdu Peak with a sea level of 680 meters. The Dingdu Peak is located on the western end of the extended Chang’an Avenue, and about 40km west of Tiananmen Square in Beijing.

 Dingduge Pavilion
Dingduge Pavilion

“Dingdu” literally means “Decide the location of the Imperial Palace ( Today’s Forbidden City ) in Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644 )”. “ge” literally means “Pavilion”. The legend goes like this: Emperor Yongle, the third emperor of Ming Dynasty wanted to move the capital of Ming Dynasty from Nanjing to Beiping (Today’s Beijing ), he issued an imperial edict that Yao Guangxiao (1335 -1418) was ordered to be the chief architect of his imperial place and he demanded the Hall of Golden Chimes (today’s Imperial Harmony Hall in Forbidden City) built on the place where the Sun rose.

The chief architect – Mr. Yao Guangxiao later ascended the summit of Niuxin Mountain on today’s extended west of Beijing Chang’an Avenue and looked at the east direction, confirming the place where the Sun rose, which was decided as the central place for building the Hall of Golden Chimes, the most important hall in the Imperial Palace, thus beginning the overall construction of today’s Forbidden City and Beijing city as a whole. Later Niuxin Mountain was renamed “Dingdu Peak” in commemoration of the peak which allowed people to decide the location for the building of Beijing city in Ming Dynasty.

Beijing Dingdu Pavilion was newly established on the top of Dingdu Peak and open to the public in May,2013. The tower has the construction of 2400 square meters and 33.9 above the the ground with 6-story inside and 3-story outside, a typical Chinese traditional architecture.

Dingduge Tower is actually part of Dingdu Peak Scenic Area which is still on the process of construction. The local Mengtougou District Government plans to build Dingdu Peak Scenic Area into a core sightseeing spot in Mengtougou and upgrade the value of Beijing Tanzhe Temple Town since Dingdu Peak is located within Tanzhe Temple Town. If you visit Dingdu Pavilion on your Beijing tour, you may also consider to cover the famous site of Tanzhe Temple nearby, the oldest temple in Beijing.

Dingdu Pavilion on the west end of Chang’an Avenue and Grand Canal ( Tongzhou section ) on the east of Chang’an Avenue, hence the saying “Beijing city has the Grand Canal on the east and Dingdu Pavilion on the west”. If you visit Beijing, a short excursion to Dingdu Pavilion is worth your time in terms of a panoramic view of Beijing city ( if no smog ) and its legendary history.

How to get there
The pavilion and peak is close to Yongding Town (永定镇) in Tanzhe Temple Town, Mengtougou District, about 40km west of Beijing city center.
Public Transport: First take subway line 1 to the west direction and get off at the final station of Pingguoyuan (苹果园站), then connect Bus 931,981 and get off at the stop of Fengcun (冯村站), then walk up to the pavilion.
Self-drive: Drive along Lianhushi Road (莲湖石路) and change for Highway 108 and branches off at North Village of Tanzhe Temple Town (潭柘寺镇北村), then drive along the roadside sigh pointing to Dingdu Pavilion.

Entrance fee: 50 yuan
Opening hours: 9:00 – 17:00
Sale of admission tickets: till 16:00

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Tanzhe Temple
Jietai Temple
Mentougou District

Tip: Hassle-free Beijing Guided Tours

If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours,  here are some options for Beijing guided tours:

Beijing Day Tour
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Further Readings

Best Time to Visit Beijing
How to plan a trip to Beijing

Top 10 Attractions in Beijing
How to Visit Forbidden City
How to Visit Temple of Heaven
How to Visit Summer Palace
How to Visit Ming Tombs
How to Visit the Great Wall of China
How to Visit Tiananmen Square
How to Visit Hutongs
How to Visit Olympic Sites

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Top 10 Shopping Malls in Beijing
Beijing Shopping

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Qianmen Commercial Street
Gui Jie ( Ghost Street) Food Street

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