Peking Man Sites Travel Guide
Zhoukoudian, situated 50 kilometers to the southwest of Beijing proper, is the former residence of Peking Man, who lived here approximately 200,000 to 500,000 years ago. Peking Man chose Zhoukoudian as his residence because the limestone caves and crevices in the area provided an excellent habitat.
The northern face of Dragon Bone Hill (Longgushan), which stands to the east of the Zhoukoudian Railway Station, is the site of the caves occupied by Peking Man; in fact, a total of four early residential sites have been discovered on this hill.
Besides those belonged to Peking Man, the remains of a site occupied by Hilltop Caveman are the most representative. At present, Zhoukoudian´s Dragon Bone Hill has an exhibition hall, which is divided into seven rooms.
The first room exhibits fossil remains of Peking Man, stone tools, and evidence of Peking Man´s use of fire. These exhibits also depict Peking Man´s external appearance and general living conditions. The second room demonstrates Hilltop Caveman´s fossils, stone tools, bone needles, decorative objects and animal fossils.
The third room illustrates fossils of man discovered in various parts of China, such as Dingcun Man, Hetao Man, Ziyang Man, Zhalainuoer Man and other fossil copies of the ancient jungle ape, southern ancient ape, Java Man, Neanderthal Man and Cro-Magnon Man that provide an overall understanding of human evolutionary development.
The fourth room introduces the geological history of Peking Man´s residence site and displays the process of human and animal evolution through different geological periods. The fifth and sixth rooms exhibit vertebrate fossils discovered in other locations around Zhoukoudian, including a display of fish fossils.
The seventh room contains the fossils of some of the animals hunted by Peking man. Among them, the tiger and bear were considered Peking man´s enemies. The discovery of elephant and rhinoceros fossils at the site demonstrates that the climate during the time of Peking man was far warmer than it is today.
The site is not only an exceptional reminder of the prehistorical human societies of the Asian continent, but also illustrates the process of evolution In addition, 118 animal fossils have been found in the cave on the north face of the hill. It should be noted that with the exception of five teeth, one upper arm bone and one leg bone, all the original Peking man fossil remains, together with those of Hilltop Caveman, disappeared during World War II and have never been recovered.
Why it is must-see sight?
If you are very interested in the human´s original history and the mystery of our human´s ancestor. You should not miss this attraction.
In 1961, the Peking Man Site was listed as one of the First Key National Cultural Protection Units by the State Council. The site was inscribed in UNESCO World Heritage List in 1987.
These cultural relics are very valuable in the study of the origin and evolution of the human species. In 1953, the Peking Man Site Museum was founded and opened to the public, exhibiting over 3,000 cultural relics. The exhibits are mainly composed of fossils of the Peking Man and other animal bones, demonstrating the origin of creatures in prehistory and the transition from ape to human.
Can be reached by buses 2,7,17,20,110,120,726,803,826 to the West Gate ,or buses 35 and 106 to the North Gate Park and historical sights.
The best time to visit Peking Man is in the winter.For not only the tourists are not to many, but also the atmosphere is suitable for you to visit such old cultural relic, so that you can be immersed in this environment to find the history.