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Popular Architecture Attractions in Asia

Gulangyu Island
Xiamen·China
4.4/5
39,246 Reviews
Island/Peninsula
UNESCO World Heritage-Cultural Site
Historical Architecture
Gulangyu Island is a tiny island located on the estuary of the Chiu-lung River, facing the city of Xiamen. It is a Unesco World Heritage Site that used to be an important window for Sino-foreign exchanges during the 19th and 20th century. The island is a popular attraction for architecture enthusiasts, providing a mixture of different architectural styles including Traditional Southern Fujian Style, Western Classical Revival Style and Veranda Colonial Style. You can hike up the Sun Rock to overlook the whole island, take a walk in the Shuzhuang Garden (including the Piano Museum) which is one of the finest Jiangnan classical gardens, visit the Hao Yue Garden containing architectures from the Ming Dynasty (including a statue of national hero Zheng Chenggong), the organ museum, and the international letter carving art museum. Don't forget to send yourself a postcard from the future at local stores!
The Bund
Shanghai·China
4.7/5
45,844 Reviews
Historical Architecture
Cultural Experiencial Area
Arguably Shanghai's most-famous tourist attraction, the Bund is a waterfront promenade and famous business district in central Shanghai. Historically, the Bund was the city’s main financial and trading center, and was located within the Shanghai International Settlement, an area under nominal British control between 1843 and 1941. The walking areas extend roughly 1.6 km along the west bank of the Huangpu River. Owing to its historic status and zoning restrictions, the Bund contains fantastic examples of classic Shanghai architecture. For this reason, it is a popular spot for photography, offering the best views across the river to Shanghai’s modern skyline in Lujiazui. No visit to Shanghai would be complete without a visit to the Bund.
Oriental Pearl Radio & Television Tower
Shanghai·China
4.6/5
88,409 Reviews
Modern Architecture
Observation Deck
The Oriental Pearl Radio & Television Tower is arguably the most recognizable feature on Shanghai’s skyline. Situated across the Huangpu River from the Bund, the Oriental Pearl tower stands 468 m to the top of its antenna spire. Completed in 1994, it has come to symbolize China’s modernization and emergence on the global scene. Visitors travel up and down the Oriental Pearl Tower in double-decker elevators that can hold up to fifty people. Located on the tower’s lower levels is the Shanghai Municipal History Museum. Given its iconic status, this is certainly a can’t-miss attraction.
Summer Palace
Beijing·China
4.7/5
31,504 Reviews
Garden
Situated in the Haidian District northwest of Beijing, the Summer Palace is a Unesco World Heritage site that used to be the palace and garden of the emperors of the Qing Dynasty. It is the largest and most well preserved royal park in China. Construction of the palace began in 1750 and it served as a residential and entertainment area for the royal members. The palace underwent two major reconstructions after suffering damages during invasions by the Anglo-French Allied Forces and the Eight-Power Allied Forces during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Summer Palace can be divided into three sectors: a political activity area centered at the Hall of Benevolence and Longevity; an empress living area concentrated around the Hall of Jade Billows and Hall of Joy and Longevity; and a tour route concentrated along the long corridor, rear hill, and the west sector.
Humble Administrator's Garden
Suzhou·China
4.6/5
38,105 Reviews
UNESCO World Heritage-Cultural Site
Garden
This is one of "China's Four Gardens" and a world cultural heritage site. The Humble Administrator’s Garden is known for its water landscape that highlights the ambiance of the Southern Chinese villages built on bodies of water. It is elegant and delicately designed. In the garden, different kinds of ancient architecture were built on water. They are scattered strategically and not one is the same as another. The garden is divided into three parts: the east, the middle, and the west. Each part has its own characteristics, especially the central garden, which basically maintains the simple and natural style of the Ming Dynasty gardens and represents the best of the whole garden.
Dujiangyan Irrigation System
Dujiangyan·China
4.7/5
22,541 Reviews
Water Conservancy Project
The Dujiangyan Irrigation System is located along the main branch of the Lancang River, west of Dujiangyan City. It was constructed in the Qin dynasty around 256 BC by Li Bing, Prefecture Chief of Shu County, and his son. It is one of the few ancient Chinese water conservancy projects that has remained preserved and intact. The project consists of three primary works—Yuzui Diverting Embankment, the Feishayan Spillway, and the Baopingkou Water Inlet, and two secondary works which include the Baizhangdi (the thousand-feet dam) and Renzidi (the y-shaped dam). They divide the Yongjiang River into an outer and an inner branch, the former of which is used to divert floods and the latter for irrigation. This has allowed the Western Sichuan plateau to become "the land of abundance" as we now know it.
Xiamen University
Xiamen·China
4.5/5
12,013 Reviews
School
Xiamen University is one of China's most beautiful universities. Situated at the foot of green hills and facing the blue ocean, one can have an incredible view of the ocean from the dormitory windows. At the campus, whether you are taking a stroll or reading a book, you will definitely be filled with peace and contentment. The architectural styles of the buildings on campus blend both eastern and western elements, drawing many visitors each day due to their fame. The campus has its share of romantic and tranquil sites, including Furong Lake, Furong Tunnel, and the Lover Valley Reservoir. Newly weds often choose to take their wedding photographs on the beach just off campus.
Potala Palace
Lhasa·China
4.7/5
13,516 Reviews
Temple
Historical Architecture
Potala Palace is a transliteration of Sanskrit and is also translated as Putuo. It originally refers to the residence of Guanyin Bodhisattva. The main buildings of the Palace are the White House and the Red Palace. The White House is the place where the Lama lives and conducts political activities. The Red Palace is the spiritual tower and temple of various Lamas. It is praised as one of the top ten greatest buildings in the world. The Potala Palace is a symbol of Tibet. It is the residence of the Lama’s Winter Palace and is also the center of Tibet’s political and religious unity.

Architecture in Asia

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