An impressive structure you will come across in Xian, the Drum Tower is well worth a visit and offers captivating insights into the city’s history.
The Drum Tower is at Beiyuanmen Street’s south end, close to the Bell Tower and Xi’an hotels near the city wall. A 15-minute walk from Grand Park Xian, this site can be reached by various bus routes (including #4, 45, 205 & 611) and is also within easy reach of the lively Muslim Quarter and its many allures.
The original tower dates to 1380 when it was built during the reign of Ming Dynasty Emperor, Zhu Yuanzhang. It was renovated more than once during the Qing Dynasty as well. The name for this site stems from the fact that it had a huge drum that was beaten every afternoon to tell the time!
Spanning two stories, the Drum Tower stands on a large pedestal made from brick. Featuring classical-style architecture, it has arched gates to the north and south that are 20 feet in width and height. As seen in other historical structures, the tower has three-layer eaves and is quite a sight when lit up at night.
The tower is not just a great site to photograph but explore too. On arrival, you will notice 24 drums with Chinese characters on the tower’s south and north sides. At the entrance is a huge drum, while inside, there are ancient drums of China, drums from other nations, Chinese paintings and even a drum performance!