Red Stairway Bridge is a 360 meter passage that leads directly to the Gate of Prayer for
Good Harvests. The bridge gradually increases in height from one end to the other. The
southern end is about 1 meter high and the north end is about 4 meters high. It is 29.4
meters wide. The bridge represents the distance between the heaven and earth.
You can see three
parallel paths on the bridge. Unlike other temples or the Forbidden City, the left path
was reserved for the emperor. The central path was for the god of heaven while the right
path was used by ministers.
The Red Stairway
Bridge is called as such because there is a crossing under the bridge which was used by
animals designated for sacrifice.
Near the northern
end of the bridge is a 150 square meter terrace which the emperor used to change his
robes. A tent was set up to insure his privacy. Within the tent, a throne, incense burners
and other necessities could be found.
Click here to see the map of the Temple of Heaven