Xi'an Banpo Museum 半坡博物馆

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Banpo Museum 半坡博物馆

The Banpo Museum, located three miles east of Xi'an, was built in 1958. It is located on the north side of Banpo village on a site that dates to the matrilineal period of the Neolithic period over 6,000 years ago. This site was just recently discovered and thus, it lay waiting for thousands of years. 
The Neolithic village was well-organized with a 160-square meter room at the center surrounded by many smaller rooms. The doors of the smaller rooms all faced the large room in the center reflecting the structure of the society. A 300-meter long ditch surrounded the village and kept away wild animals. There is a ceramic crafting area in the east and a cemetery to the north. The 46 houses inside the town were square, round, half-underground or fully above-ground. Some were square, some round, some half-submerged in the ground, some on the surface. These houses had many of the characteristics of later Chinese homes made of earth.  A reconstruction of the Banpo rooms shows exhibited production tools and daily utensils used by the Banpo people. Animal skins hangs on the walls and a mat rests beside the hearth on the floor. The room also displays the people going about their daily lives such as a man making a fire for his grandmother who is the head of the family. You can see hunters firing their arrows or throwing flying balls to catch a frightened deer. By the river, you can see fishermen fishing or women and children gathering fruit in the forest. Later you can see women roasting meat for dinner or sewing up clothes.
In the cemetery, there are 174 graves lined up neatly. The Banpo people usually died around the age of 30. In the eastern end, there are 6 kilns for making pottery. People marked their pottery with strokes that are seen in Chinese characters today. Even though writing did not exist at the time, these marks served the same purpose for the people. There are also many Banpo artifacts that you can see at this museum. 
Admission Fee: CNY 35 (Mar. to Nov.)
CNY 25 (Dec. to Feb.)
Opening Hours: 08:30 to 17:00
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