Renowned as the ‘First Scenery under Heaven’ in China, Yellow Crane Tower in Wuhan has rich cultural significance that makes it the symbol of the city. Situated on the Snake Hill of Wuhan, Hebei Province, the five floors tower was constructed in 223 under the reign of the Three Kingdoms.
Are you a history buff who loves exploring architectural marvels? If so, do not miss this amazing place in China. Here’s everything you need to know about the Yellow Crane Tower.
The Story of the Yellow Crane Tower
As per a legendary tale, it is believed that the tower was built by an old pothouse owner named Old Xin and his family in Wuhan. One day, Old Xinsaw a shabbily dressed Taoist priest coming to his home.
The priest asked for some wine but Old Xin didn’t pay any attention to his request. However, his son was kind enough and offered whim some wine without taking any money.
The Taoist priest continued visiting the old pothouse for almost half a year and one day said to Old Xin’s son that he wants to reward him for his kindness. He said he wishes to draw a crane on the pothouse wall that would dance whenever he requested.
People, on hearing this came in large numbers to see the crane dancing. Eventually, the Xin family became rich and they decided to construct the Yellow Crane Tower in gratitude to the kind Taoist priest.
History of Yellow Crane Tower
Originally constructed in 223 AD, the stunning Yellow Crane Tower is a work of the Three Kingdoms Period. It was initially used as a watch tower for the military army.
The tower’s original site was on the Yellow Crane Jetty, a place on the west of Xiakou. According to the Yuanhe Maps and Records or Prefectures and Counties, the founder of Eastern Wu Kingdom, Sun Quan constructed the fort of Xiakou and a tower was also built near the location – “Yellow Crane Jetty”.
Soon after the Three Kingdoms came into power, the tower lost its military importance and was turned into a must-visit site for the first times in the city of Wuhan. Unfortunately, wars led to multiple destructions of the tower, the most during the Ming Dynasty (almost 7 times).
The monument was reconstructed on ten different occasions. The last renovation during that time was done under the Qing Dynasty in the year 1881 which was also destroyed later in 1884.
After years, the historical site was taken over by the trestle of Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge in the year 1957. Later in 1981, the government of Wuhan ordered to rebuild the tower and this time it was in a new place, only 1000 meters away from the original site.
The reconstruction and relocation was initiated in 1981 and it took four years for the completion of the tower.
Architecture of Yellow Crane Tower
You will find different architectural features of the Yellow Crane Tower reflecting different Chinese dynasties. But talking about the present tower, it is designed according to the architectural style during the Qing Dynasty. The tower measures a height of 51.4 metersand it looks the same regardless the viewing angle of the onlooker.
Almost 100,000 yellow glazed tiles are used to cover the roof. The yellow upturned eaves indicate as if every floor is designed to look like a yellow crane all set to fly.
Things to do in Yellow Crane Tower
There are a lot of places to see and things to in Yellow Crane Tower for the visitors. Each floor exhibits a theme, such as the first floor exhibits the theme of the legend. On its walls, you will find a 30X20ft porcelain portrait painted depicting clouds, cranes and rivers to create a romantic mood just as it would be in heaven.
On the third floor, you will come across poems written all around in praise of the historical tower during various dynasties.
On the fifth and topmost floor, the visitors get to have of awe-striking view of the Yangtze River. The Yangtze River Bridge and the verdant surroundings of the city leaves a tourist amazed. On the outside, there are memorial gateways, pavilions and bronze yellow cranes.
How to reach Yellow Crane Tower
You can take bus 10, 401, 61, 402 or Trolley bus 4, 1 or 7 to reach Huanghelou (Yellow Crane Tower Bus Stop).