The Ming Tombs
A typical tourist day outside Beijing includes both the Great
Wall and the Ming Tombs.  The Ming Dynasty lasted from
1368-1644, and thirteen Ming Emperors have their tombs in
this large area.  Only a few are open to the public.  Ming
Tomb architecture resembles this Great Palace Gate above,
which is easier to photograph than the actual tombs.
Next come my favorites, statues of guardian animals and
members of the court, in a double row on both sides of the
spirit way (or sacred way), still protecting their Emperors
after all these centuries.  The camel is on duty.
This fierce lion is not a slacker.  Sitting down means
the guardian is off duty on the tomb approach.  Having
your picture taken with one of these statues is a
favorite tourist activity at the Ming Tombs.
Some of the guardian creatures appear to have been
invented, which makes no difference to the Ming.
Humans are still guarding their Emperors.  This statue
is of a Ming general.  The Prime Minister is here too.  
If you have a high speed internet connection, watch the Intrepid
Berkeley Explorer's free film of this trip by clicking on:
The Last Emperor's Home Video