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  1. This Qing Dynasty 清代 estate is one of the main tourist draws of Jianshui, something not to be missed if you are anywhere close. It was built as a family compound complete with 42 courtyards and 214 rooms, occupying 50,000 square meters of grounds. It's arranged somewhat like a maze, and it's easy to get turned around. But if you wander long enough you will encounter family shrines, a clean blue-water lake and even a three-story pagoda. Many parts of the estate are fancifully named after places, people and events in "Dream of the Red Chamber" 红楼梦。 This is the main entrance, not far
  2. Went to Jianshui last week to show a couple of American friends around. Thought I might share some photos with you since it's cold outside and I'm huddling by the heater at home here in Kunming sipping hot tea. It's a small city, small by China standards anyhow, at about half a million population, south of Kunming in Honghe Prefecture 红河州. Getting there takes a little under 3 hours by train and is faster by bus. They have better weather than we do, seldom snows in the winter and the summer heat tops out at 31 or 32 degrees. It's one of my favorite spots in Yunnan, and I've been se
  3. Jianshui Old Town 建水故城 is full of cultural relics, and one that's outstanding is the Confucius Temple. It's one of the best preserved and is the second largest in all of China, second only to the one at his birthplace in Qufu, Shandong 山东省曲阜市。I've been to both and like this one better because it isn't so vast; the compound in Qufu is too big to tour on foot. It was built during the Yuan Dynasty 元代 about the year 1285, and like many such places, it has been restored many times. The pamphlet you get at the door on the way in after paying your 60 Yuan says it has been rebuilt 40 times.
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