Situated in the Haidian District northwest of Beijing, Summer Palace is 9 miles (15 kilometers) from central Beijing. Being the largest and most well-preserved royal park in China, it greatly influences Chinese horticulture and landscape with its famous natural views and cultural interests, which also has long been recognized as 'The Museum of Royal Gardens'.
The construction started in 1750 as a luxurious royal garden for royal families to rest and entertain. It later became the main residence of royal members in the end of the Qing Dynasty. However, like most of the gardens of Beijing. It ranked amongst the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO in 1998, as well as one of the first national AAAAA tourist spots in China.
Yiheyuan radiates fully the natural beauty and the grandeur of royal gardens. Composed mainly of Longevity Hill (Wanshou Shan) and Kunming Lake, it occupies an area of 300.59 hectares (742.8 acres). There are over 3,000 man-made ancient structures which count building space of more than 70,000 square meters, including pavilions, towers, bridges, corridors, etc. It can be divided into four parts: the Court Area, Front Hill Area, Rear Hill Area and Lake Area.