Beijing, China’s enigmatic capital city, is packed to bursting with world-class attractions, be they historic palaces, beautiful royal gardens, solemn temples, bustling markets or modern art enclaves. Here, we recommend the must-visit attractions in Beijing, from traditional tourist favorites to quirky alternative sights.
One of the foremost instantly recognizable landmarks within the world, the nice Wall is believed to possess been built as early because the seventh century BC, although the bulk of the prevailing wall was constructed during the Ming (1368-1644). the foremost famous part was built by Qin Shi Huang (the first emperor of the Qin dynasty) from 220 to 206 BC. the full wall is 21,196 kilometres (13,171 miles) long and covers the traditional northern borders of China. it absolutely was built to safeguard the country against invasions from the northern nomadic groups of the Eurasian Steppe. the foremost popular sections to go to include Badaling, Jiayu Pass and Shanhai Pass, but if you wish more excitement, the rugged and breathtaking Simatai section of the wall is certainly the one to go for.
The Palace Museum and therefore the Forbidden City
The Imperial Palace, also called the Forbidden City, is China’s most important attraction and may trace its origins back to the dynasty of the 13th century. Its immense size is that the results of enlargements made during the dynasty between 1406 and 1420, after the capital was transferred here from Nanking.
All told, this beautiful palace has been home to 24 Ming and Qing Emperors, earning its nickname of the Forbidden City thanks to the very fact ordinary citizens weren’t allowed access. The complex covers 720,000 square meters, all of it surrounded by a 10-meter-high wall with towers within the four corners and a 50-meter-wide moat. It’s divided into a vicinity used for ceremonial and administrative purposes, furthermore because the private quarters once utilized by the Emperor and his concubines.
Tiananmen Square (the Square of Heavenly Peace) is that the world’s largest inner-city square. Designed to carry 1,000,000 people, it had been built to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Chinese Republic in 1958. Considered the middle of Red China, the square’s symbolic importance dates back to May 4th, 1919, when students demonstrated against the Chinese provisions of the Treaty of Versailles.
Highlights of a visit include the Monument to the People’s Heroes (Rénmín Yingxióng Jìniànbei), a 38-meter tall obelisk consisting of 17,000 pieces of granite and marble, and also the splendid Tiananmen Gate, referred to as the Gate of Heavenly Peace. it had been completed in 1417 and was once the most entrance to the Imperial City.
Panjiayuan Antique Market
Panjiayuan Antique Market is that the biggest outdoor market in Beijing, and its 4,000 stalls cover somewhere around 26,000 square metres (279,861 square feet). It specialises in Chinese antiques and art pieces, so you’ll be ready to obtain unique jade, paintings, calligraphy, teapots and genuine antiques, all piled among an honest selection of cheaper souvenirs and nostalgic tat. Panjiayuan Antique Market could be a real hodgepodge of quality, so haggle like sin and walk off if you don’t get the worth you would like. If the vendor allows you to leave, chances are high that the wares are real.
Yiheyuan (Summer Palace)
Yiheyuan, also referred to as the Summer Palace is one of the must-visit attractions in Beijing. It is a formidable complex of gardens, lakes, palaces and temples built throughout the course of the many dynasties. Spreading over 290 hectares (716 acres), work started on the peaceful retreat in 1153 during the Jin dynasty, with the project finally finishing around 600 years later. Three quarters of the complex is water, and its original name, fittingly, was Qingyiyuan – Gardens of Clear Ripples. the location was given its current name in 1888 after a spruce-up to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Empress Dowager Cixi. Now, it’s a serene combination of architecture and landscaping, famous for its seamless combination of artificial constructions and natural scenery.
Just a brief distance from the Imperial Palace, Beihai Park is one amongst the oldest surviving imperial gardens in Beijing. Laid out at the start of the 10th century, this beautiful open space takes its name from nearby Lake Beihai (North Lake) and offers many good reasons to go to.
Among the park’s most significant structures are the Round Fort, dating from the Yuan period of 1271-1368, and therefore the spectacular Hall of Enlightenment. inbuilt 1690, the hall is home to a one-and-a-half-meter-tall Buddha carved from one block of white jade, and an outsized black jade vase from the first 12th century.