Abstinence (followed by Indulgence)

On the west is the Palace of Abstinence where the Emperor would fast for some days before the ceremony began.

17-24 Fasting Palace  2
Entrance to the Fasting Palace



And beside the wide ‘Imperial Bridge’ is a small building where the emperor changed his clothes on his way to pray for good harvests.

Dressing Pavilion
Dressing Pavilion


As we entered at the East gate we went first through what seem like cloisters to the and the various buildings around that.

04-56 East Annex Hall detail

Then we went on the Palace of Abstinence, the Imperial Vault of Heaven and the circular Mound Altar before walking back to the gate past the kitchens and slaughter houses.  It was a very warm day and the park was surprisingly large so that once we had finished looking at this we went back to the hotel rather than explore other locations.

After all the abstinence and fasting we had an ice cream and Pip found one that had a filling of ‘red beans’. We had first had ones like that after climbing the mountain to see the terraced fields in Guilin, the beans are quite sweet and mix well the chocolate and vanilla.


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