Chinese Name: 关中民俗艺术博物院 Pronunciation: guān zhōng mín sú yì shù bó wù yuàn
Building Time: 2004
Recommended Time for Visit: 2-3 Hours
Best Visiting Season: All year round
Construction Area: About 334,000 square meters
Address: No. 1 South Wutaishan Street, Wutai Town, Chang’an District, Xi’an City, Shaanxi Province
Popular Activities: Watching Huayin Laoqiang Opera (one of the most archaic operas in China).
Building Function: Being helpful for foreigners and Chinese to research Shaanxi folk art.
Admission Ticket Fee
Adults &Children (taller than 1.4 meters)
Children (between 1.2 and 1.4 meters)
Seniors Aged 65 or above (with valid ID card)
Ticket Free of Charge Policy
Free for children younger than 6 or under 1.2 meters (accompanied by adults).
(March 1st to October 31st)
(November 1st to February 28th)
Ticket Office Opening Hours
Tips: Guanzhong Folk Art Museum is closed every Monday (national holidays and July and August are excluded).
Overview of Guanzhong Folk Art Museum
Guanzhong Folk Art Museum, located at the center of Zhongnanshan World Geological Park and the foot of South Wutai Mountain, occupied a construction area of 334,000 square meters. The museum is adjacent to Cuihua Mountain in the east, Wutai Mountain in the south, and the Caotang Temple in the west, overlooking Xi’an City in the north.
The museum was founded by Wang Yongchao, the representative of the National People’s Congress of China for over 30 years. Mr. Wang once said that the construction of the Guanzhong Folk Art Museum not only saved, and protected the original cultural relics of the Chinese nation, but also promoted the local cultural industry. The museum would become a window for cultural exchanges of Shaanxi with foreign countries and play an important role in building Shaanxi into a culturally strong province.
It is the National 4A-level Scenic Spot, and the National Cultural Industry Demonstration Base. In the 2018 Northwest China Tourism Marketing Conference and Tourism Equipment Exhibition, Guanzhong Folk Art Museum was listed among "The 100 Wonders of Northwest China".
Since the late-1980s, the museum has been collecting and protecting stone, wood, and brick carvings dating from the Zhou (1046 BC-256 BC), Qin (221 BC-207 BC), Han (202 BC-220 AD), and Tang Dynasties (618-907). Guanzhong folk houses and other relics of production, life, and customs of Guanzhong people are also included in the collections. Besides, the museum has collected more than 33,600 sets of celebrity calligraphy works and paintings, protected nearly 40 relocated Ming and Qing style ancient folk courtyards, and collected a large number of intangible cultural heritages like local operas, handcraft workshops, rites, and customs.
There are four themes of the museum collections: Folk Arts, Guanzhong Residences, Folk Rites and Customs, and Calligraphy Works and Paintings of Shaanxi Celebrities. Furthermore, the four themes are classified into nine sub-categories. These precious collections have witnessed the development and cultural inheritance of the Chinese nations over thousands of years.
Stone Hitching Post
Among the collections, the most eye-catching ones are 8,600 stone hitching posts from different dynasties, which are “the Ground Terra-Cotta Warriors”. These hitching posts mostly are carved from bluestones and enjoy a large scale and extraordinary lineup, highlighting mighty power. They are also diversified in their appearances which are dominated by Hu people (non-Chinese people living in the north of China between the Warring States (475 AD - 221 AD) and the Southern and Northern Dynasties (420 BC - 589 BC)).
Some of the stone hitching posts are related to Hu women, representing the progressing humanistic concern and the idea of gender equality at that time. These hitching posts also fully prove the continuous war, migration, and cultural integration in Guanzhong area (central Shaanxi) among nationalities in northwest China during the Song (960 BC - 1279 BC) and Ming Dynasties (1368 BC - 1644 BC).
The museum has not only filled the gap of folk collections of cultural relics, but also opened up a new field for folk culture research. Guanzhong Folk Art Museum includes the folk culture demonstration zone with the functions of cultural relic protection, folk-life experiencing, folk art performance, folk sacrifice, and tourism, demonstrating the profound cultural heritages of Shaanxi.
Development of Guanzhong Folk Art Museum
In 1985, Wang Yongchao, the founder of Guanzhong Folk Art Museum, accidentally saw that some hitching posts were thrown at random. He felt so pitiful that he decided to protect these cultural heritages. Since then, he has been investing money on collecting these precious heritages.
In 2004, with the efforts of Wang Yongchao and the support of the local government, the building of Guanzhong Folk Art Museum started.
Main Scenic Spots at Guanzhong Folk Art Museum
The Gate Tower of Xijing Town
The Gate Tower of Xijing Town
The Gate Tower of Xijing Town is of the typical Ming Dynasty architectural style and was originally located in Fuping County, Shaanxi Province. With a length of 18 meters from south to north, a width of 10 meters from east to west, and a height of 10.8 meters, the gate tower is grand in size. Above the door opening of the tower, there is a stone plaque inscribed with “Xijing Town of the Ming Dynasty 1640”. The upper brick of the door opening is curved with vivid patterns describing the market life at that time and fully showing the prosperous scene of the ancient town and the superb craftsmanship of construction craftsmen at that time. The gate tower was moved into the museum for preservation in 1989 and restored in 2004.
The Gate Tower of the Zhao Family
The Gate Tower of the Zhao Family
The Gate Tower of the Zhao Family is the entrance building of Zhao’s private estate. The building was firstly built in the late Qing Dynasty (1636-1912), with its overall structure being similar to the Chinese character “品” (pin). The building consists of two floors, and its length, width and height are respectively 15 meters, 5 meters, and 13 meters. The whole construction stands out with extreme magnificence and majesty against the middle opening door and the two side doors. The gate tower was moved into the museum for preservation in 1998 and restored in 2005.
Local Story of Guanzhong Folk Art Museum
At one corner of the museum, some “three-inch lotuses” (three inches are about 10 centimeters) shoes are exhibited. The “three-inch lotuses” is related to a prevalent trend among Chinese women in the past: binding foot. In the past, women who had smaller feet were considered to be more charming in China, so most women were forced to bind their feet when they were 13 or 14 years old to make their feet small enough.
After binding, their feet were three inches in length and were similar to lotuses in shape. That was how “three-inch lotuses” feet came. After the 1911 Revolution, this distorted custom was abolished, implying that China has stepped from feudalism to the modern era.
Recommended Travel Route
Enter from the West Gate of the Museum→The Gate Tower of the Zhao Family→The Stone Hitching Posts→The Gate Tower of Xijing Town→Theater→The Exhibition Hall of Calligraphy Works and Paintings of Shaanxi Celebrities→Cui’s Residence→Lei’s Residence of→Sun’s Residence→Geng’s Residence→Sun’s Residence→Yan’s Residence→Exit from the West Gate of the Museum.
Transportation to Guanzhong Folk Art Museum
West Gate: Take bus 338 and get off at the South Wutai (Guanzhong Folk Art Museum) Station.
Chinese: 请带我去关中民俗艺术博物院。English: Please take me to Guanzhong Folk Art Museum.
Chinese: 请带我去关中民俗艺术博物院的西门。English: Please take me to the West Gate of Guanzhong Folk Art Museum.
If you go to Guanzhong Folk Art Museum from the center of Xi’an (Crowne Plaza Hotel), it takes about 50 minutes (about CNY 95).
If you go to Guanzhong Folk Art Museum from Xi'an Xianyang International Airport, it takes about 80 minutes (about CNY 250).
If you go to Guanzhong Folk Art Museum from Xi'an North Railway Station, it takes about 80 minutes (about CNY 165).
If you go to Guanzhong Folk Art Museum from Xi'an Railway Station, it takes about 65 minutes (about CNY 100).