Mapang Drum Tower, which is situated in Sanjiang County, is the most well-known tower among the roughly 160 drum towers in and around Sanjiang County, whose base is 169 square meters. It is a traditional Dong minority architecture with a magnificent ethnic culture for people to explore this mysterious group.
It is said that the drum towers in Dong villages are the key to get touch with the cultural connotation of Chinese minority. Usually, the drum tower-constructed of wood and built without nails-is the largest multi-story pagoda-like building in the village. Among these numerous significant drum towers, Mapang Drum Tower possesses the international fame for a long time. This ancient architecture was constructed during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and over the years has been damaged by fire several times. The present appearance of this site was rebuilt in 1943.
The Mapang Drum Tower possesses all the typical architectural features of Dong drum towers. The tower has nine upturned eaves, and each eave is carved with flowers, grass, fish, birds, and characters. As soon as you enter the Mapang Drum Tower, you will see four indoor pillars made of fir that extend all the way to the top floor. Surrounding the four pillars are a group of twelve mid-sized pillars symbolizing prosperity for the village during the twelve months of the year. Upstairs on the second floor, you will see the most important and precious object in the Drum Tower- a large skin drum that gives Drum Towers their name. The drum is used to summon the villagers if something urgent happens in the village.
Usually, Mapang Drum Tower is a place for villagers to get together. This is a civilized site contained the oldest culture of Mapang Village. People would like to come here for ceremonies, meetings, festival gathering as well as recreation activates. During festivals, the villagers will gather together in front of the Mapang Drum Tower, singing, dancing and performing on the lusheng, which is a reed pipe wind instrument used by the Miao, Yao, and Dong Nationalities. The road to Mapang Tower is complex so that China Travel Agency
will be a good guide to find this Dong ehtnic architecture.