"Not just a bridge: an old Chinese town adventure" Marco Polo Bridge Tip by Vaiofox
Marco Polo Bridge, Beijing: 4 reviews and 2 photos
There's plenty more to see around the Marco Polo bridge area (or Lugouqiao Bridge as it's known in Chinese) than just the bridge itself. The bridge leads directly to the gates of the recently restored town of Lugouqiao (in the district of Wanping).
The gates are a spectacle worth seeing. They are the only entrance through the city walls that encircle Lugouqiao. These solid stone walls are more than 15 metres high and five metres wide across their top. As you enter the gates from the bridge, a stairway to your left takes you to the top of the wall. Spectuacular views of the bridge can seen from here.
As you pass through the gates, you enter the main street of Lugouqiao, a colourful, tree-lined throughfare. The houses and shops, many with bright red pillars and screens, have been carefully restored. As you walk along the street, you get a sense of life in Chinese towns hundreds of years ago.
Halfway along the street on your left is the Memorial Hall of the Chinese People's War of Resistance against Japan. Here you can learn more about the war that started by the bridge on July 7, 1937. Entrance fee: 15 yuan for adults. Opening hours: 8:30am - 4:00pm daily, except Monday.
Continue past the museum to the city wall gateway on the opposite side of town. The walk from the bridge to here takes about 15 minutes. Beyond the city wall is the Lugouqiao Sculpture Park. This fascinating park opened in July 2005.
You can get to Lugouquiao by public transport or by taxi. Avoid paying a flag-fall fare to your taxi driver as this costs more than a privately negotiated fare. I was able to negotiate a ride from Beijing's CBD hotels for 250 yuan. My driver happily waited two hours at bridge before returning me to my hotel. The ride is about 20 minutes each way. Save 10 yuan for an entrance fee to the Marco Polo bridge itself.
The 309, 313, 329 or 339 bus from Liuliqiao (on the West Third Ring Road) also takes you there. Get off the bus at Luqouqiao Station.
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