The Hanging Monastery
Another popular tourist site is the fifteen-hundred-year-old wooden Hanging Monastery. The monastery is suspended fifteen stories above the valley floor on the side of a sheer cliff. It is a mystery why the monastery was built there and why.
One reason might be the floods that once plagued the valley. Today, a dam controls the water. The monastery was built in an indentation in the cliff below an overhand.
What cannot be seen from the valley floor is the Hanging Monastery was built into the cliff’s face. More than forty caves and rooms were dug into the rock. This process allowed supports to be built into the cliff. The thin wooden pillars are only there for decoration and were added in the last century.
The Great Wall
One of the world’s greatest treasures is the almost four-thousand mile Great Wall that took two-thousand years to complete.
The early great wall was made of layers of pressed earth and straw. The Qin Dynasty completed the first wall. The Han Dynasty extended the wall toward Mongolia. The Ming Dynasty built the wall stronger of stone and mortar. The Chinese used smoke and fire to send messages over long distances to warn of enemy attacks.
Continued with Part 3 on March 1, 2018, or return to Part 1
Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of My Splendid Concubine, Crazy is Normal, Running with the Enemy, and The Redemption of Don Juan Casanova.
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