In the east of Tai Lake, two ancient villages were described as “state-level historical and cultural village” at the end of last year; that is the Moon Bay Village in the West Hills and Luxiang Village in Dong Mountain. West Hills is an island in the Tai Lake, which is also the largest island in Chinese freshwater.
When you come to Moon Bay Village, the most eye-catching is the sign which is the tree planted in the Tang Dynasty. It is about 1200 years old; the diameter of trunk is about two meters, it witnessed the village’s thousand years of history. This tree has experienced a number of hardships, the side of the trunk was blasted into the dead wood due to fire, branches alone was given new life-sustaining. It is vigorous and effective, commonly known as the “grandfather is piggybacking his grandson.” Ancient camphor tree covers nearly an acre of shade, which is a good place to enjoy the cool air for the village.
The building in the west of tree is “Breeze Pavilion”, which is the Land Deity Temple and was rebuilt in recent years. New pavilion tablet kept the articles of Tong Pak Fu. I do not know when the old temple is destroyed.
The Slabstone Street in Moon Bay Village was built in Qing Dynasty. It is built by four thousand five hundred block of stone paved Kam Shan granite. Residents said the stone path to the board of this street is the village’s largest characteristics.
Existing houses in the village are most built in the Qing Dynasty. People here are becoming rich by going out to do business or planting flowers and fruit.
First you will see the sedan hall, which consecrate the memorial tablet of their ancestors upstairs, so it is called home building; then you will see the second hall, which is the central building of the courtyard and used for special celebration ceremony and reception for guests. At last, you will see the building for daily living.
Moon Bay Village has architectures of high and low level, which is representative building of southern region residential building in the period Qianlong.
Huang Ancestral Hall is the largest and most complete existing ancestral hall in Xishan.
Huang Ancestral Hall was built in the period of Qianlong, which is made up by a large number of the Qing Dynasty brick, wood, stone, from the porch, entrance hall, Bungalows, Main hall, the Chamber, auxiliary rooms, gardens, etc., and covers an area of one thousand square meters.
Dongshan is not far from Xishan, which facing the Tai Lake.
Lu Lane derives from the Southern Song Dynasty, which is famous of Guxi Lane, Flagpoles Lane, Jiangjia Lane, Hanjia Xiang, Wenning Lane and Kangzhuang Lane.
The old village is located in the col, where has a larger building dozens of the Ming and Qing. Walking into the long stone paved alley, you may just feel like walking into a gallery of lengthy history. There is a ancient ferry called “Hangu Ferry,” the type is just like a boat. Now it is rebuilt by the government. In Mid-Ming Dynasty, there have been well-known of the four major business group, that is Guangdong merchants, Shanxi merchants, Anhui merchants and the Dongting business group. Dongting merchants in Suzhou came out from here to do business and had a great impact across the whole of China.
Ao Wang came from a Scholarly, officials and aristocratic family. He got away from home at 16, then obtain third overall in final imperial examination (presided over by the emperor). The couplet on both sides of pavilion came from Ao Wang’s poem.
Ao Wang rose to the rank to the Grand Secretary in Ming Dynasty, who was proud by Bohu Tang. The villagers built three old arches for him, which is one of the highlights in Luxiang village.
All things here have the honest country flavor. You may feel back to the Ming Empire hundreds of years ago when walking on the ancient stone road.
It is full of orange trees in the mountain behind village, in where hit TV series “orange is red”, as well as Zhuangzhuang Tian’s “springtime in a Small Town”, Yimou Zhang’s “Shanghai Triad “, Shaohong Li’s “Pink” and other films. Moon Bay Village and Luxiang Village, as two typical lake villages, more and more people pay attention to these historical and cultural villages.
China Travel Guide: http://www.tourdechina.cn/chinaguide/