Located in the middle of downtown Chengdu, Du Fu Thatched Cottage is one of the hottest attractions in the city.
As the name suggested, Du Fu Thatched Cottage (sometimes written as Dufu) was a former residence of Du Fu, a famous Chinese poet.
Du Fu wasn’t originally born in Chengdu, he was born in Gongyi City in Henan Province. But he went for the official examination in Chang’an (which now known as Xi’an). But to get away from the An-Shi Rebellion, Du Fu then escaped to Chengdu. With the help of friends, he built and stayed in what was now called Du Fu Thatched Cottage.
And during his stayed in his residence, he composed over 240 poems that are now considered to be relics to the Chinese.
After Du Fu past away, his residence was left dilapidated for hundreds of years until Song Dynasty, people built a temple to commemorate him for his outstanding contribution in Chinese literature.
Du Fu is like China’s Shakespeare, he had profound influence on Chinese classic poems and has contributed a lot to the history of Chinese poetry.
What to See in Du Fu Thatched Cottage
Du Fu Thatched Cottage covers a total area of about 59 acres, which is a huge space. Although it may just be a cottage lived by Du Fu, it was expended during the Song Dynasty and a few temples and beautiful pavilions.
Here are a few highlights you shouldn’t miss when visiting Du Fu Thatched Cottage:
Hall of Historic Poetry
Once you get in from the main entrance, you will be walking on a stony paved road that leads you to the Hall of Historic Poetry.
And on both sides, there are exhibition rooms to display Du Fu’s life work and his journey. There are also books and other relics displayed in the exhibition hall.
Gongbu Temple was the last building added to Du Fu Thatched Cottage in the ancient time. During Du Fu’s stay, he was an adviser in Gongbu, hence, people built the Gongbu Temple to commemorate him.
The Gongbu Temple can also be known as “Three Sages Hall” because you can find the shrine of Du Fu, Lu You and Huang Tingjian there.
Shaoling Thatched Cottage Pavilion
This is a pavilion with a thatched roof. It is the first landmark of Du Fu Thatched Cottage.
As you walk deeper into Du Fu Thatched Cottage, you will see a thatched cottage from afar. The cottage was the house of Du Fu. Inside, you will see the living room, kitchen, and bedrooms. The cottage brings you back to the past to imagine how Du Fu lived his life.
Ruins of Tang Dynasty
You will be surprised to see the ruins of Tang Dynasty within Du Fu Thatched Cottage. In 2001, people discovered the ruins and a large amount of cultural treasures in the place.
The findings of the ruins verify the truth of the natural features of Du Fu Thatched Cottage.
There is a huge and tall pagoda within Du Fu Thatched Cottage, called Wanfo Pagoda. The pagoda was rebuilt in 2005. As you ascend the stone steps into the pagoda, you can see the underground peristele of the ancient pagoda through glass. You can explore the pagoda as there are a few levels showcasing statues, artifacts, and poems from famous Chinese poets.
How to Go to Du Fu Thatched Cottage
Take Metro Line 4 to North Caotang Road Station, and then walk south for about 15 minutes and you will reach Thatched Cottage of Du Fu.
For your information, Du Fu Thatched Cottage is known as Du Fu Caotang, hence, the metro station Caotang Road Station was built for it.
Du Fu Thatched Cottage Visiting Tips
- Du Fu Thatched Cottage is like a huge garden. Take a stroll and slowly explore the place. The gardens and flowers are beautiful, and the entire place is quiet and peaceful.
- It may take you anywhere from an hour to two to visit the place. Depending on your passion with the Chinese culture and literature, you may spend more hours there.
- Du Fu Thatched Cottage opens all year long, usually from 8:00 AM until 6:00 PM.
- The best way to explore Du Fu Thatched Cottage is to get an English-spoken guide. One guide for 1-10 people cost you 100 RMB and 11 to 20 people will cost you 150 RMB.
- Without a guide to explain, it will be like a taking a walk in the park. But with a guide, you get to understand the history of the place and also about Du Fu’s life experiences and journey.
- Taking pictures are encouraged, but some areas like in the exhibition halls, using flash may be forbidden.
- There is a small souvenir store that also sells books. You can find many meaningful souvenirs, folding fans, and also picture albums there.
- There is a visitor center located in Du Fu Thatched Cottage. So, you can keep your luggage there. Or if you need any help, you can just go there.