Shenyang Imperial Palace

The Mukden Palace (simplified Chinese: 盛京宫殿; traditional Chinese: 盛京宮殿; pinyin: Shèngjīng Gōngdiàn), or Shenyang Imperial Palace (simplified Chinese: 沈阳故宫; traditional Chinese: 瀋陽故宮; pinyin: Shěnyáng Gùgōng), was the former imperial palace of the early Manchu-led Qing dynasty. It was built in 1625 and the first three Qing emperors lived there from 1625 to 1644. Since the collapse of imperial rule in China, the palace has been converted to a museum that now lies in the center of Shenyang city, Liaoning province.


Early construction began in 1625 by Nurhaci, the founder of the Qing dynasty. By 1631, additional structures were added during the reign of Nurhaci’s successor, Hong Taiji.

The Mukden Palace was built to resemble the Forbidden City in Beijing. However, the palace also exhibits hints of Manchu and Tibetan styles.

After the Qing dynasty replaced the Ming dynasty in 1644 in Beijing, the Mukden Palace lost its status as the official residence of the Qing emperor. Instead, the Mukden Palace became a regional palace.

In 1780, the Qianlong Emperor further expanded the palace. Successive Qing emperors usually stayed at Mukden Palace for some time each year.

layout of the Mukden Palace


In 1955, the Mukden Palace was converted into the Shenyang Imperial Palace Museum.

In 2004, it was included on the UNESCO World Heritage List as an extension of the Imperial Palace of the Ming and Qing Dynasties, or Forbidden City, in Beijing.


60 RMB for adult

Shenyang Imperial Palace, also known as the Mukden Palace, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Shenyang, Liaoning Province, China. Here’s a brief overview:

Overview: The Shenyang Imperial Palace served as the former imperial palace of the early Qing Dynasty (17th century). It is one of the two remaining royal complexes in China, the other being the Forbidden City in Beijing. The palace was built in 1625 by Nurhaci, the founding emperor of the Qing Dynasty, and expanded by his son, Emperor Huang Taiji. It served as the political center of the Qing Dynasty before the capital was moved to Beijing.

Architecture and Layout: The palace complex covers an area of over 60,000 square meters and consists of more than 300 rooms. It follows the traditional Chinese palace layout with a series of halls, pavilions, courtyards, and gardens. The architecture combines elements of Han, Manchu, and Mongolian styles, reflecting the multi-ethnic nature of the Qing Dynasty.

Key Features:

  1. Dazheng Hall (大政殿): This is the main hall of the palace, where important state affairs and ceremonies were conducted.
  2. Fuling Tomb (福陵): Located in the eastern part of the palace complex, it is the mausoleum of Emperor Huang Taiji and his empress.
  3. Qingning Palace (庆宁宫): This palace served as the living quarters for the emperor and empress.
  4. Wensu Pavilion (文素阁): This pavilion houses a collection of historical artifacts and cultural relics related to the Qing Dynasty.

UNESCO World Heritage Status: The Shenyang Imperial Palace was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004. It is recognized for its outstanding universal value as an exceptional example of imperial palace architecture and urban planning in China.

Visiting Information: The palace is open to visitors and offers guided tours to explore its historical and architectural significance. Visitors can admire the ornate decorations, traditional furniture, and beautiful gardens within the palace complex.

Overall, the Shenyang Imperial Palace stands as a testament to China’s rich imperial history and cultural heritage, attracting tourists and history enthusiasts from around the world.