Zhenyuan Tower ​- famous & largest Drum Tower in the Hexi Corridor

Last Update: 17th October 2020


Originally built in 1507, Zhangye Zhenyuan Tower stands at the heart of Zhangye. The base is 32 meters wide and 9 meters high. The building is a three-storey wooden structure with overhanging eaves and cornices. There is a tunnel crossing the base that leads to the east, west, north and south.

Zhenyuan Tower ​Fast Facts

  • Chinese Name: Zhangye Zhenyuanlou(张掖镇远楼)
  • Height: over 30 x meters tall
  • Things to do there: Photography, Architecture
  • Who visits: Photographers, Architecture Learners
  • Time required: 0.5 – 1 x hour

What to expect at the Zhenyuan Tower

A stone stele which tells the reconstruction of Zhangye Zhenyuan Tower and Ganzhou Suspension Bridge is situated in the north of the tower. The stele is well-preserved.


There is an exquisite bronze bell cast in the Tang Dynasty (608 – 917) in the southeast corner of the building. The outer wall of the bell is slightly yellow with iron blue. The bell is 1.3 meters high and 1.1 meters in diameter. It is thick on the upper part and thin on the lower part. The body of the bell is carved with three layers of patterns with 6 patterns on each of the layers.

Best time to visit the Zhenyuan Tower

If you are planning to visit Zhangye Zhenyuan Tower for photography purposes, the best time to visit is in the evening.


The best months to visit are from April to October.


How to get to the Zhenyuan Tower

As Zhangye Zhenyuan Tower stands at the heart of Zhangye which is located close to Dafo Temple, therefore, you could get to Dafo temple first. And walk to the tower.

  • Rent a vehicle to the tower. This is the quickest and most direct option.
  • Take Bus 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16 and Bus 23 to the Stop of Dafosi (大佛寺站) or the Stop of Nanchengxiangkuo (南城巷口站). Then, walk to the tower.

Additional Zhenyuan Tower Travel Advice

  • As at 17th October 2020, Zhangye Zhenyuan Tower is not open to the public.
  • You can walk around the tower to appreciate its charm.
  • Please wear the sunscreen cream and sun glasses even in winter.
  • Please take body lotion, lip balm, and hand cream as it is always dry in Zhangye.
Interested in visiting the Zhenyuan Tower on a Tour?

Wendy Wei Tours offers a variety of different packaged tours as well as custom tours including the Zhenyuan Tower, among other attractions and destinations. To find out more, please visit our Tours page or Contact Us directly to find out more.