The Forbidden City.

On July 19, 2012, in Beijing, Forbidden City, Must-sees, by Jack Li

When you are Traveling to Beijing there are certain places that are unavoidable and one of these places is the Forbidden City, next to the Tiananmen Square and an important point on your Beijing tour. The Forbidden City was initially an imperial palace for the Ming and the Qing dynasties, it was built in 1420 […]

When you are Traveling to Beijing there are certain places that are unavoidable and one of these places is the Forbidden City, next to the Tiananmen Square and an important point on your Beijing tour.

The Forbidden City was initially an imperial palace for the Ming and the Qing dynasties, it was built in 1420 and it has 980 buildings, who served as imperial residence and political courts, and one of its peculiarities is that all these buildings are surrounded by a moat who is 52 meters wide and 6 meters deep, you can only enter to the Forbidden City by four doors, and the only ones that are accessible to the public now are the Meridian Gate (next to Tiananmen and the main entrance) and the Gate of Divine Might (next to the Jingsang park that was built with the debris of the moat construction).

The City has a rectangular form and a spectacular tower at every corner and that is the most visible thing that you can see from the corners, the only thing that is higher than the moat and they have been built in inspiration of ancient paintings recreating palaces.

When you enter to the Forbidden City by the Meridian Gate you arrive at the exterior Court and you have to cross the Gate of the Supreme Harmony to get to the real Court, the Central Harmony, this court is the biggest and the most important in the Chinese politics, it was there where all the decisions were made and also the weddings and investitures.

Behind this hall there is the Hall of Central peace, where the emperor prepared himself for the ceremonies, after you pass this point you are in the inner Court, that’s where the emperor lived and it’s distinguished from the exterior by the amount of “nature” that you can find there.

Beyond this point you enter in a human-made forest/garden that holds lots of palaces and halls (some of them are accessible to the public) and each one of these hold a practical function in the emperor’s life.

Each building has its own symbolism and they are constructed by the “Classic of Rites” a way of building that says that each

But the Forbidden City is not just a place to see different buildings; it also holds a museum where you can see a large collection of different types of objects that were part of the Qing dynasty, these objects include the largest collection of Chinese ceramics in Beijing, up to 50,000 paintings, jade objects and palace artifacts such as daily life objects or ceremonial and bureaucratic items.

The Forbidden City was impossible to be visited by foreigners during the Imperial Era but now you can visit it, so don’t miss the opportunity and spend a good day there in your Beijing Tour! Then you can visit Tiananmen Square and/or the Jingsang Park which are next to the Forbidden City so you don’t even have to worry about the transportation!

Tagged with:  

Once Forbidden Now a Must-See

On May 14, 2012, in Beijing, Forbidden City, Historical Relics, by Jack Li

In my previous post entitled ‘Jingshan: The Park on the Hill’, I mentioned the fantastic views which can be encountered. If you haven’t already, it is time to experience on of these views at ground level; namely, The Forbidden City (The City). One of, (if not), the most famous tourist attracts, The City’s central location […]

In my previous post entitled ‘Jingshan: The Park on the Hill’, I mentioned the fantastic views which can be encountered. If you haven’t already, it is time to experience on of these views at ground level; namely, The Forbidden City (The City). One of, (if not), the most famous tourist attracts, The City’s central location makes it readily accessible. Either taking Line 1 and getting off at Tiananmen West or East stations or taking Line 2 on the subway to Qianmen Station are both viable option in reaching The City. Whether signing-up for Beijing tours or deciding to travel to Beijing independently, then I insist that The City should be at the top of your ‘things to see & do’ list.

I personally went with a group on a cold March day to The City, whereby it was necessary to wrap-up warm especially with the wide-open, wind-swept spaces in The City. Naturally, entrance to one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country will be busy. Hence, if you get the chance, best to visit on a week day. Due to the enormity of the place, we found it a bit of a mission to actually find the main section of The City. However, once there, this is where, at your discretion, to get a tour guide. Outside, people may pretend to act as guides even if they can speak English, but be warned, only choose a tour guide well inside The City as they will be wearing a professional badge – we learnt this from experience!

In Chinese, The City is known as ‘Gugong’ with its presence embodying the splendour of the country’s past. The City took fourteen years to construct and was completed in 1420 under the Ming Dynasty. I am sure you will be asking yourself ‘What does the “forbidden” part of the name mean?’ Well basically, the general populace were ‘forbidden’ from entering The City with exception from having permission from
the emperor. Serving the reign of twenty-four emperors, having the largest collection of wooden structure in the world, covering 24 hectares and surrounded by a ten meter wall; it is thus understandable why, in 1987, the palace became listed as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site.

As a final point, there needs to be emphasis placed on the importance of preserving historic value of The City and questioning commercialisation. At the end of our tour, for instance, our guide showed us a man in a store who is claimed to be a nephew of the last emperor and now is a professional calligrapher. Buying a personalised work from this man would be pricy, but its bespoke production does increase its value. Commercialising The City with modern brands on the other hand, may not necessarily help with preservation efforts. I do enjoy my Starbucks coffee, yet I am pleased with the closure of The City’s very own in 2007, for instance. If anything, The City is a ‘must-see’ simply for its generous architectural grandeur and its rich cultural depictions such as The Palace of Heavenly Purity, which seated the Emperor’s throne and also The Palace of Earthly Tranquillity which housed the Empress. Even the smaller architectural pieces, like profound symbolic figures of the imperial dragon and phoenix and lions to name a few, will leave you in awe  on your China travel to The City.

The Center of Beijing – Forbidden City

On October 12, 2011, in Beijing, Forbidden City, Must-sees, by Jack Li

The Forbidden City is a must see if you are going on a Beijing Tour. It is located in the heart of Beijing with Tiananmen Square on the south side. The Forbidden City is in a great location since it might be down the road from your Beijing hotel. History behind the Forbidden City Emperor […]

The Forbidden City is a must see if you are going on a Beijing Tour. It is located in the heart of Beijing with Tiananmen Square on the south side. The Forbidden City is in a great location since it might be down the road from your Beijing hotel.

History behind the Forbidden City

Emperor Chengzu built the city during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). The construction of the palace started in 1407 and finished fourteen years later in 1420. It was believed by the Chinese Astronomers that the Purple Star (Polaris) is located in the center of the heavens. Since the Emperor was a Heavenly Emperor he lived in a purple palace called the “Purple Forbidden City”.  The reason why it was called Forbidden was because the only way to get in was by being invited by the Emperor.

What you can see while you are there:

There are thousands of buildings you can see while you are visiting the City not including the many beautiful courtyards. A 52-meter wide moat and 10-meter high wall was built around the City. The city has over 8,700 rooms. While you are visiting the City you should count how many rooms you can see. The City is very big so you might get lost but isn’t that the fun of going to new places is by getting lost and finding your way back.

The grandest hall is the Hall of Supreme Harmony. This is where the emperor would ascend to visit with officials. Important events were also celebrated there. On the right side is where the princes would study. Off to the north lies the imperial library where the world largest encyclopedia (Sikuquanshu) was house.

To get to where the royal family resided you need to go under the Gate of Heavenly Purity. During the Qing Dynasty, Emperor Kangxi would meet high officials to give them his orders. The emperors also had a hall for the concubines so they had a resident. There is also imperial garden. It is a small garden but it has many beautiful effects.  It has towers that over looks it, pavilions, and artificial hills. They also created springs throughout it. The best part is that old tress can still be found there. Some of these trees are over 1,000 years old. These are only a couple of things you can see while you are walking around the Forbidden City, there is much more, so go and experience it for your self.

Just a reminder that the Forbidden City might restrain the number of passengers into the park, on such days as May Day, China National Day, and some summer holidays. The admission fee is 60RMBS and it opens at 8:30 o’clock AM and closes at 6 o-clock PM. Plan on staying for three to four hours since there is a lots to see and do. The best way to get there is by taking the Subway, on Line 1 get off at Tiananmen West or East Station. Go north through Tiananmen Tower. If you take Line 2 make sure you get off at the Qianmen Station and you will also want to walk north to the Tiananmen Tower.

So when you go on your China Tour make sure you have planned on seeing the Forbidden City. It is in the heart of Beijing, and will be the heart of your trip.

The Forbidden City Attraction

On November 11, 2010, in Beijing, Forbidden City, Must-sees, by Jack Li

You can travel to the Forbidden City via Beijing subway to Line 1 station Tiananmen Xi, then walk towards Tiananmen Tower to enter the Forbidden City.  Alternatively you can travel to the Forbidden City with China Tours and make the most of your China travel and absorb the most ancient and exhilarating attractions in Beijing. […]

You can travel to the Forbidden City via Beijing subway to Line 1 station Tiananmen Xi, then walk towards Tiananmen Tower to enter the Forbidden City.  Alternatively you can travel to the Forbidden City with China Tours and make the most of your China travel and absorb the most ancient and exhilarating attractions in Beijing.

The Forbidden City is located north to the Tiananmen Square.  It is called Gu Gong in Chinese and was the Imperial Palace during the Ming and Qing Dynasties.  It is the world’s largest palace complex and has many attractions.  We went to visit the The Forbidden City on a cold and mysterious day and it was the first place we went to visit via our China Tour bus.  We got off the bus, outside the gates towards the Forbidden City and walked toward the entrance.  As we walked toward the entrance there was an amazing view behind us.  The scenery was a temple sitting on top of a hill.

I found this view to be fascinating mainly because I have never experienced this kind of scenery before, being from the western world started to feel very much like a tourist taking pictures of the unknown felt quite astounding.  Nevertheless, we carried on walking toward the gate.  We finally entered the main entrance to the sacred Forbidden City the Shenwu Gate (Spiritual Valour).  We walked into the entrance and found the first room of the palace it was almost like a small garden complex which had very strange walls.

I must admit it is very difficult to get lost around the Forbidden City if you don’t have a map to follow your route.  It’s much better that you have a tour guide with China Tours to show you around and give you an explanation of all the palace buildings, you can also ask many questions.  We walked right through the centre of the Forbidden City taking pictures of buildings such as the Gate of Heavenly Purity, Treasure Gallery and the Imperial Gardens, we even found out that the film The Last Emporer was filmed here.  While I’m writing this article I can give you a list of all the buildings and gates to the Forbidden City.

  • Meridian Gate
  • Hall of Literary Glory and & Hall of Martial Valor
  • Gate of Supreme Harmony
  • Hall of Supreme Harmony
  • Hall of Central Harmony
  • Hall of Preserved Harmony
  • Gate of Heavenly Purity
  • Palace of Heavenly Purity
  • Hall of Celestial & Terrestrial Union
  • Palace of Earthly Tranquillity
  • Hall of Mental Cultivation
  • Six Western Palaces
  • Hall for Ancestry Worship
  • Six Eastern Palaces
  • Palaces of Tranquil longevity
  • Treasure Gallery
  • Qianlong Garden & Pavilion of Pleasant Sounds
  • Imperial Garden
  • Moat, Corner Towers and Gates.

This might help you familiarise yourself with the areas in the Forbidden City so that when you plan your trip you can make the most of your day when visiting this great opportunity.

The palace is divided in to two parts.  The Southern section, or otherwise the Outer Court is where the Emperor exercised his supreme power over the nation and then the Northern section, the inner court was where the Emperor lived with his royal family.   You will find that many of these royal architectural greats are painted yellow.  The glazed tiles; decorations in the palace are painted yellow even the bricks on the ground are painted yellow.

Forbidden City

Yellow represented the colour of the Royal family and was the dominant colour of the Forbidden City.  However, there is one exception the Wenyuag library has a black roof.  The reason being is that black was believed to represent water then and could extinguish fire.  As we walked through the city we found out many facts and even found out that the Emperor had 3,000 wives.  We chuckled at this somewhat disturbing fact.  In a good way obviously!  We carried on walking and as you walk to the other side of the Forbidden City you will find the entrance to the Tiananmen Square.  Once you find your way to this entrance you have left the Forbidden City.

Find out more sceneries you can incorporate with your Forbidden City trip with China Tours.

Forbidden City

On November 4, 2010, in Beijing, Forbidden City, Must-sees, Tips & Ideas, by Jack Li

The Forbidden City is located in the centre of Beijing it’s very easy to get to by public transport as many bus routes pass by the Forbidden City, behind there is also Tianaman Square subway station. However if you would like to travel in luxury I would recommend going with China Tours here you will […]

The Forbidden City is located in the centre of Beijing it’s very easy to get to by public transport as many bus routes pass by the Forbidden City, behind there is also Tianaman Square subway station. However if you would like to travel in luxury I would recommend going with China Tours here you will be able to custom make your trip to suit your needs!

Forbidden city

The Forbidden City houses the ancient imperial palace of the Ming and Qing dynasties, it is the world’s largest surviving palace complex and covers 178 acres. Once inside it is a maze of buildings and status there are actually 980 buildings in total which took over 500 years to construct. Each room Is ornately decorated with red walls and jewels, it is a spectacular sight to see the roofs are all a golden which is beautiful when the sun shines down on to them. Everywhere you look there is something to see it is such a big complex that you could be there for hours and still not see everything it has to offer. The Forbidden City was made with great care every minuet detail was considered it such a beautiful place to visit.

The Forbidden City is divided into town parts the outer court and the inner court. The outer court covers the southern sections and was traditionally used for ceremonial purposes. The inner court which is the northern sections was where the emperor and his family actually lived this is where they spent the majority of there time.The Forbidden City is surrounded by a 7.9 metres high bright red wall this was  built to protect the Emperor and his family it runs all the way round teh outside. The Forbidden city now also is the home or the palace Museum which has some really exciting things to see.

Every corner is steeped in history this is why I would recommend taking an organized tour as it is very difficult to navigate your way round and its very interesting to hear what each building was used for and why it was built.

If this account has inspired you to want to travel Beijing but don’t know where to start for some great low cost travel idea’s go to China Tours. Or if you need advice on hotels go to China Hotels.

Amazing Tour in USA

On October 22, 2010, in Cool Places, Shanghai, by Jack Li

For tourists who travel around the world, US travel is as attractive as china travel, the similarity of these two tourism countries is that both of them have many attractions which cover many scenes, and you will have a fantastic experience there. So, why not book a China Flights or US Flights and have a […]

For tourists who travel around the world, US travel is as attractive as china travel, the similarity of these two tourism countries is that both of them have many attractions which cover many scenes, and you will have a fantastic experience there. So, why not book a China Flights or US Flights and have a look at the amazing countries yourself?

At this time, I will make a compression about some of the famous tourism cities of these two countries.

In US, we take New York City example. City of New York is the financial and economic center of United States, also known as the largest city and port. The symbol of the city is Statue of Liberty. It stands high on Liberty Island in New York harbor, a symbol of the American people for the noble ideals of freedom, a symbol of the American people who desire and pursuit of a better life. It is so famous and full of dreams that tourists who around the world come to visit it.

Downtown Manhattan

It is the center of New York. Most important commercial, financial and insurance institutions are located in here. World Financial Center – Wall Street is located in lower Manhattan, and New York’s large enterprises, business center located in midtown of Manhattan. Every night, thousands of buildings and skyscrapers in midtown Manhattan bright the sky and it looks like daytime. New York reflects the absolute power in the world economic power, so Manhattan is also known as the “world’s best place.” So take a chance to visit here as soon as possible.

                         

Broadway Avenue

It is an important north-south road in New York, from Battery Park in the south and run through the whole Manhattan. New York subway lines and Seventh Avenue subway lines are under way through this. A large number of theaters, theater and musical theater in the United States are located on both sides of the road, thus Broadway Avenue is known as the symbol of musical play.

                   

Now, we come back to China, and here we are in Beijing. Beijing is also a famous tourism city around the world. It is the political, cultural center of China. After the Opening-up of China, Beijing has a number of great changes. The symbol of Beijing is Tian’anmen Square. It is located in the center of Beijing, facing up to Chang’an Avenue. It is the largest city square in the world.

The Forbidden City

It is the palace of Chinese ancient emperors, and was built by the Ming Emperor, now as the unique masterpieces of ancient architecture, the world’s largest and most complete wooden structure of the ancient buildings; it attracted many visitors who coming from all around the world. It is said that there are almost 9 thousands rooms in the Forbidden City, so it will take more than 20 years of a person who live in the room one by one for one night. In ancient time, the Forbidden City is only allowed the relatives of the Emperors, citizens are forbidden to go there, let alone have a tour. However, nowadays, it is opened to welcome visitors who want to have a look here.

                            

Financial Street

It is located in the West Second Ring Road, south of Chang’an Avenue from Fuxingmennei Avenue in the south to Fu Cheng Men Nei Street in the north. Many magnificent buildings are located here, including famous banks around the world, and other companies.

Now, we can see that both China and US, both New York and Beijing, have their own characters, that is why they can attracted millions of tourists to visit here, so just take action and start on your China Tours or US Tours.  

Tagged with:  
Page 1 of 11