Yueyang Tower

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Photo source: hunan.gov.cn

Standing on the bank of the Dongting Lake in the northwest of Yueyang City, Yueyang Tower, along with the Yellow Crane Tower in Wuhan and the Tengwang Pavilion in Nanchang, is one of the three great towers in south of the Yangtze River. It used to be a watchtower for the soldiers garrisoning the city gate and taking a test. However, towards the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty, this tower was changed to an inspection tower to review troops by General Lu Su of the Wu Kingdom (222). In 716 during the Tang Dynasty when Secretariat Director Zhang Yue garrisoned Yueyang, he further expanded the tower and named it Nanlou or Yueyang Tower. In 1044 when the Song Dynasty general Teng Zijing garrisoned the place, he renovated the Yueyang Tower and invited his bosom friend, Fan Zhongyan, a well-known writer, to compose an essay Records of the Yueyang Tower, which won the tower great fame home and abroad.

Photo source: official website of Yueyang Tower Scenic Area

The Yueyang Tower is unique in architecture. Its three-storey main building is 19.42 meters high, with four huge nanmu pillars supporting the upturned roof ridges. One of its unique features is that its roof looks just like a general's helmet.

Each floor of the tower exhibits couplets written by famous men of letters in Chinese history. The ground and first floors feature each a carved screen of Records of Yueyang Tower. The one on the first floor was hand-written by Zhang Zhao, a great calligrapher in the 18th century. On the third floor a screen shows a famous 8th century poet Du Fu's poem which was Mao Zedong's calligraphy. In 1988 Yueyang Tower was named by the State Council as a key cultural relic site under state-level protection as well as a national scenic site. In 2011 it was approved as a national 5A-level scenic area by the National Commission on Rating the Quality of Tourist Attractions. 

In Yueyang Tower, tourists can find poems, paintings, calligraphy works, tree-root carvings, and different models of Yueyang Tower of the Song (960-1279), Yuan (1271-1368), Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1636-1912) dynasties. Tourist attractions on both sides of Yueyang Tower include the Thrice Drunken Pavilion, Xiao Qiao's Tomb, Xianmei Pavilion, and Pavilion Dedicated to Du Fu.

Add.: Dongting North Road, Yueyanglou District, Yueyang City
Admission fee: RMB 70 yuan/adult
Opening hours: 7:00-18:30
Service hotlines: 0730-8311676/0730-8315588/0730-8319435

Source: enghunan.gov.cn; yueyang.gov.cn