Offering insights into China’s rich history and showcasing impressive sculptures and calligraphy, the Stele Forest in Xian offers much to discover; here are some things to know before you visit.
Also known as the Beilin Museum, this attraction is on Sanxue Road, around a 15-minute walk from Grand Park Xian; those staying at such centrally located Xi An, China hotels can also take a taxi or the bus (# 14, 208, 223, 402 or tourism bus #6). It opens at 8:00am and closes between 6:00pm and 7:00pm depending on the month.
The Site’s Origins
The museum is housed within a Confucius Temple and the stele forest here initially displayed steles from the Tang Dynasty. During the Song Dynasty, the site saw additions being made such as an inclusion of a special hall. Over time, it added to its collection with works from the Han, Jin and Han dynasties.
What to Expect
Today, the Forest of Stele Museum features the country’s largest collection of steles and is where one will find various epitaphs, stone tablets, stone carvings, paintings and works of calligraphy. Apart from the Forest of Steles, you can explore the Confucius Temple and Hall of Carved Stones each providing something new to discover.
The Tang Dynasty steles are amongst the site’s notable attractions which also include pictorial tombstones, portraits and animal guardians. At the Hall of Carved Stones, you can view stone horse reliefs belonging to the “Six Steeds of the Zhao Mausoleum”, while also of note is the ancient Nestorian tablet.