Tracing the Fading History - Hakka Earthen Building

A Tulou, meaning earth building or "earthen tower", is the traditional communal residence of Chinese Hakka's rural dwellings in the mountainous areas of Fujian, in southern China. To escape from war and disaster, the Hakka has moved to Fujian from Central China since 12th century; they settled down in the mountainous southwestern Fujian Province, created and developed this unique earthen architectural building to prevent attack from bandits and marauders.

earth tower, fujiantulou, fujianearthern building inside

Tulou in Fujian is known for their unique shape, large scale, and ingenious structure. They were designed as a large fortress and apartment building in one. Structures typically have only one entranceway and no windows at the ground level. Each floor serves a different function - the first hosts a well and livestock, the second is for food storage and the third and higher floors contain living spaces. Tulou can be found mostly in southwestern Fujian and southern Jiangxi provinces.

Tolou building was listed by UNESCO as world heritage site in 2008 and praised as 'exceptional examples of a building tradition and function exemplifying a particular type of communal living and defensive organization in a harmonious relationship with their environment'.

Yongding and Nanjing County, in southwestern Fujian, boast the largest group of earth buildings. Thanks to the pleasant climate, the hometown of Tulou has always been an interesting destination the whole year. However, you can choose to visit Tolou buildings in March when the areas come alive with various wild flowers and lush plants, giving these historical and cultural architectures a vibrant beauty.

Sample tours to visit Hakka Tulou:

3-day Xiamen Tour Package to Hakka Earth Buildings

hakka earth buildinginside of tulouoverlooking earth tower

More trip ideas in March 

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