The newly built Shaanxi History Museum, designed as an ode to Tang Dynasty architecture, contains over 115,000 objects inits collections and successfully symbolizes the great extent of Shaanxi history and its remarkable culture. The museum space is divided into several halls that cater to specific eras or genres or art. Some of these are the main exhibition hall, introductory hall, numerous halls for permanent, special, and temporary exhibitions, and one that has been named the National Painting Hall. Like other attractions such as the City Wall orBig Wild Goose Pagoda in Xi'an, the Museum will impress your with its own style.
The Museum's permanent exhibition primarily displays Shaanxi's ancient history. Representative pieces from all periods have been selected to show the development of civilization in this region. Among the thousands of objects displayed here are painted Neolithic ceramics, bronzes reflecting the rise of the Zhou people, bronze weapons including swords, statues of horses and soldiers, and Tang Dynasty gold and silver objects and ceramics. Each collection is accompanied by photographs, information, and models of their respective archaeological sites.
On the whole, visitors to the museum on their Xi'an tours will learn of the incredible influence the Shaanxi province has had on China in both ancient and more modern times. One interesting thing worth knowing before ending your visit through the Shaanxi History Museum is that customers are expected to bargain for items in the gift shop, and can expect to save as much as 50% when shopping, if not even more! So come and have a Xi'an tour, spend a day learning about ancient China, the undeniable significance of the city of Xi'an and its surrounding region on what China is today, and leave with a souvenir in hand. It will be a selling point on your entire China tours.
Discovery of the Shaanxi Provincial History Museum
Located to the northwest of the Big Wild Goose Pagoda in the ancient city Xi'an, capital city of Shaanxi province, Shaanxi History Museum is one of the first state museums with modern facilities in China. Constructed from 1979 to 1983 and opened to public in 1991, Shaanxi History Museum covers an area of more than 65,000 square meters, with a building area of 55,600 square meters, exhibition halls of 11,000 square meters, cultural relics storerooms of 8,000 squaremeters,and a collection of 370,000 objects.
Noted for the pearl of ancient dynasties and house of Chinese treasures, Shaanxi History Museum gives a general overview on Chinese history and the splendid ancient cultures in ancient times.
Shaanxi Provincial Museum is generally composed of office and exhibition halls. The exhibition halls are divided into four groups respectively; the Preface Hall, the Permanent Exhibition Halls, the Temporary Exhibition halls, and an exhibition hall for Tang Mural Paintings. Your Shaanxi history museum trip in Xi'an tours will start from the Preface Hall in which a replica of a stone lion from the Shunling Tomb of the Tang Dynasty and a huge picture of a loess plateau and the Yellow River stand.
The Preface Hall
Situated at the first floor of Shaanxi history museum, the preface hall also called No.1 Exhibition Hall, which shows the history of Prehistoric Times, Western Zhou and Qin Dynasty. In other words, the Preface Hall is made up of Prehistoric Times, Western Zhou and Qin Dynasty.
History of Prehistoric Times can be traced back to 21st Century BC. The Lao Guantai Culture, the Yangshao Culture and the Longshan Culture are displayed in the Prehistoric Times. Yangshao Culture can be the most famous among them. It was a matriarchal society and the representative ruins of the Yangshao Culture is in Banpo Village of Xi'an. Moreover, the must-see relics in Yangshao culture are a V-bottom bottle of red pottery and a pottery basin with patterns of fish and faces. This is why Yangshao culture also called "Painted Pottery Culture".
After seeing the Prehistoric Times, you will access to Western dynasty which involved in the origins of the Zhou people, the foundation of Western Zhou and their culture and economy.
The last section in the preface hall is Qin Dynasty. You are suggested to admire the splendid Terracotta Warriors which illustrate the powerful military in Qin Dynasty. Emperor Qinshihuang contributed a lot for uniting the Chinese characters, currency and the system of weights and measures. Various money, characters and measuring implements are displayed in this section.
Permanent Exhibition Halls of Shaanxi History Museum
Exhibiting cultural relics of the Han Dynasty(202 BC-220 AD) and Wei, Jin, Southern and Southern and Northern Dynasties (220-589), the Permanent Exhibition Halls is situated on the 2nd floor of Shaanxi History Museum attractions.
As it known to all, Xi'an was known as Chang'an in the Han Dynasty and you can find it is still famous in the world. For instance, Chang'an Men is used in the city wall of Huacheng, South Korea. Relics in the Han Dynasty displayed here are currency, four tiles each bearing one of four deities on them and so on. As a result of highly developed and peaceful society, social life of people in Han Dynasty became colorful. The Han Culture is treated as the cradle and origin of
Today's Chinese Han people. You'll get a general view on the Han Dynasty in Shaanxi Provincial Museum Xi'an
Following the demise of Han Dynasty, the Wei, Jin, Southern and Northern Dynasties ruled but it was a period of continual wars. Records, combination of different minorities and the art and culture of Buddhism in the Wei, Jin, Southern and Northern Dynasties are shown in this hall. The Shaanxi History Museum also offers you great opportunities to get to know something of the origin of Chinese Buddhist culture and the differences between Chinese Buddhism and India.
Temporary Exhibition Halls
Consisting of relics in Tang Dynasty and relics in Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties, the Temporary Exhibition Halls lies on the second floor of Shaanxi History Museum.
The Tang Dynasty was the most prosperous and a momentous period in ancient China. Being the capital of China in ancient times, Xi'an witnessed the heydays of Chinese history in Tang Dynasty on which a great number of achievements were reached. When you entered the hall, the architecture in Tang Dynasty will be introduced to you. A tri-color, pottery quadrangle dwelling is shown independently.
Handicrafts. Silks, golden and silver articles, jade articles, tri-color glazed potteries, and copper mirrors are shown to demonstrate the prosperous days under the reign of Emperor Xuanzong of Tang Dynasty. Culture in Tang Dynasty are illustrated with costumes, entertainment, and religious culture. You will be amazed by the various culture in Shaanxi History Museum.
After Tang Dynasty, Xi'an lost its capital position gradually. The most popular relics in the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties are guard figurines, Buddhist statues.
Exhibition Hall for Mural Paintings of Tang Dynasty
Occupying 1,000 square meters and stores 600 mural paintings from more than 20 noble tombs in Tang Dynasty, the Exhibition Hall for Mural Paintings of Tang Dynasty lying on the first floor below ground in Shaanxi History Museum. The inquiry system and electronic explanation system provide you additional information including the fantastic murals and some background knowledge.
Facilities in the Shaanxi History Museum
There are many cheaplists and small restaurants around the museum, but do not expect too much on taste and quality.
Toilets are available both inside and outside the museum. The inside are free while the outside toilets charge for 1 Yuan.
When finish your visit, you can go to an area with various souvenirs in Shaanxi History Museum gift shops. If time permitted, you can also walk around to Xiaozhai, downtown area in south of Xi'an.
- Location: 5 kilometers south of Xi'an in Yanta District.
- Opening hours: Tuesday-Sunday; 09:00am to 5:30pm 08:30am to 06:00pm Closed on Mondays
- Admission Fee: An individual tourist can get only one free ticket at the ticket office by the valid certification (ID card or passport). Extra CNY 300 for the Exhibition Hall for Mural Paintings of Tang Dynasty
- Restrictions: Armed guards at the gate check for dangerous articles. No flash photography inside.
- Audio Guide Device: Deposit: CNY 100; Rent: CNY 20
- Recommended Time for a Visit: 2 hours
- For souvenirs concern, you can buy some souvenirs for your family and friends in Shaanxi History Museum gift shop inside the Museum such as pottery figurines and paintings.
How to Get There
Take Bus No. 5, 19, 24, 26, 27, 30, 34, 400, 401, 521, 527, 701, 710, 721, 722, or610 and get off at Cuihua Lu (Cuihua Road) stop.
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