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Relics of the City Wall

Relics of the City Wall
Entering the park, you will first be attracted by the Relics of the City Wall. The Ming Dynasty city wall, first built in 1419 during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), was said to be as long as 24.9 miles (40 kilometers). Sadly, as time passed, many sections of the wall were torn down. The remaining section between the Southeast Corner Tower and Chongwen Gate measures only 0.9 mile (1.5 kilometers). Once a part of Beijing's inner city wall, it was built during the reign of the Ming Emperor Jiajing (1521-1566). Although the wall is broken and incomplete, you can still glimpse Beijing history through it.

 Southeast Corner Tower
Walking to the east end of the park, you will see the Southeast Corner Tower. It was constructed in 1436. Soldiers used to watch for enemies and shoot arrows from the tower during wars. The double-eave corner tower is about 98 feet (30 meters) high and L-shaped when seen from above. The roof is embellished with green glazed tiles. The ridge of the roof is decorated with sculptures of animals and immortals. The most impressive fact is that there are as many as 144 shooting holes which are evenly distributed on the four sides of the tower. As the largest of all the existing corner towers in China, it was listed as a key historical and cultural relic under state protection in 1982.
There are about 1,000 plum trees including 50 different species in the park. In spring, the park is filled with the fragrance of plum blossoms. Since the fresh and elegant plum blossoms contrast well with the ancient and solemn city wall, a great number of tourists visit the park to appreciate the beautiful flowers. During the plum blossom period in late March or early April, a series of activities is held, including the teaching of the popular science of plum blossoms, plum blossom photography competitions for teenagers, and indigenous performance by ethnic minorities. All the activities are very interesting and popular.