The Fragrant Hills Park, about 30 kilometres northwest of Beijing, is one of the most favourite resorts in the city's outskirts. It covers an area of 160 hectares. In 1186, in the Jin Dynasty, the Fragrant Hills Temple was built and terraces, pavilions and pagodas were added by the Subsequent dynasties. The area was later converted into a park and was named the Park of Tranquility and Pleasure. Along with Yuanmingyuan and the Surmmer Palace, the park was twice destroyed in 1860 and in 1900. After 1949, large-scale restoration took place and now the Fragrant Hills Park is a pop- ular place in late autumn for holiday-makers when the maple leaves redden.
The Temple of Azure Clouds was first built in 1366 before the collapse of the Yuan Dynasty. In 1748 during the Qing Dynasty, large-scale construction work was done. The Hall of Arhats designed after the Jingci Monastery in Hangzhou and the Diamond Throne Pagoda at the rear of the temple were built in that period. Before liberation, the buildings in the temple were quite rundown. Since 1954, they have been renovated and painted anew, and Sun Yat-sen Memoriai Hall was rebuilt to pay tribute to this great pioneer of the Chinese revolution.
The Temple of Sleeping Buddha - It was first built in the 7th century at a cost of 5 million taels of silver. When it was restored under the Qing, it was given another name: the Temple of Universal Awakening. It is generally referred to as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. The way leading to the temple is lined by towering ancient cypresses, with a glazed archway standing right in front of the temple. The archway is made of marble, crowned with glazed tiles of various shapes and colours.