Not packed in a bus. Not herded with a group. Self guided walk is the SAFEST way to sightsee while observing SOCIAL DISTANCING!
Forbidden City, Beijing

Forbidden City, Beijing (must see)

A trip to Beijing is incomplete without a visit to Forbidden City, the huge, majestic and best preserved imperial Chinese palace. This impressive and gorgeous palatial structure exemplifies traditional Chinese palatial architecture and has influenced cultural and architectural developments in East Asia and elsewhere.

This Palace Museum houses precious historical and cultural relics of China. In 1961, it was listed by the Chinese central government as a historical monument to be specially preserved. Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987 and is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.

This palace is listed along with four others as the five most important palaces in the world. It was home to 21 Ming and Qing dynasty emperors between 1368 and 1911. In keeping with the traditional beliefs, the palace was constructed to resemble the Purple Palace in heaven, believed to be the residence of God. "Forbidden" referred to the fact that no one could enter or leave the palace without the emperor's permission.

The palace is built over an area of 72 hectares. There are 8704 rooms, 980 buildings and 90 palaces with 150,000 square meters total floor space. Structures including the palace and all the gates of the Forbidden City are arranged around Beijing’s south-north central axis.

A ten-meter high wall encloses the complex of 3,430-meter circumference. The moment you reach this impressive complex, you will be stunned by the magnificence of the four watchtowers at each corner and the moat that acted as the first line of defense.

Why You Should Visit:
Taking in the scale and majesty of the buildings from the open grounds inside is a terrific experience.

Tip:
Don't forget your passport – you will need it to buy a ticket and gain entry (scanning & body check required beforehand).
Get there as early as you can to avoid the hoards of tourists and bring food as the options are limited and usually quite busy.
When hiring a guide, make sure they speak good English and negotiate on price and time. At the very least, rent the audio guide.
Make sure you visit the Imperial Gardens before exiting and go to Jingshan Park (through the underground passage) for a panoramic view of the Forbidden City from above.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 8:30am-5pm (April-October); 8:30am-4:30pm (November-March)

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Beijing, China within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Forbidden City on Map

Sight Name: Forbidden City
Sight Location: Beijing, China
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Beijing, China

Create Your Own Walk in Beijing

Create Your Own Walk in Beijing

Creating your own self-guided walk in Beijing is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Souvenir Shopping Guide

Souvenir Shopping Guide

It would be a pity to leave Beijing without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Beijing, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.8 Km or 3 Miles
Beijing City Center Walk

Beijing City Center Walk

Beijing has been a political, educational, cultural and economic center for centuries. Today, it is one of the greatest remnants of the Chinese Imperial past. Along with its famous City Wall and Forbidden City, this sightseeing tour will guide you through Beijing's most popular attractions in the heart of the city:

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.6 Km or 3.5 Miles
Walking Tour: Olympic Park, Beijing

Walking Tour: Olympic Park, Beijing

Olympic Park was built in Beijing for the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2008. This complex of modern buildings boasts a unique architectural approach compared to the more traditional builings that fill the city. A multicolored rainbow illuminates the park, making it the perfect place for an evening walk. Take the following tour to discover the unique buildings of Olympic Park that represent...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.8 Km or 2.4 Miles
Shopping Around Chaoyang Park

Shopping Around Chaoyang Park

Chaoyang Park is located in the North-East area of Beijing. The park itself represents one of Beijing’s main attractions, with its great beauty and infrastructure, as well as a number of famous markets that lie in the area. This guide will take you to some of the best features of Chaoyang Park.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 7.9 Km or 4.9 Miles
Walking Tour: Beijing Temples

Walking Tour: Beijing Temples

Chinese temples are of unique beauty and have withstood many dynasties, beginning with the Qin Dynasty. Because the temples have always been connected to the imperial families, many of them were destroyed by 1949 when the last dynasty ended. Nevertheless, a great number of beautiful temples with great history still stand in Beijing. Take the following tour to discover the most famous temples in...  view more

Tour Duration: 4 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 9.4 Km or 5.8 Miles
Walking Tour: Xicheng District, Beijing

Walking Tour: Xicheng District, Beijing

Xicheng District includes the largest part of the old city. In this part of Beijing, you will find fascinating Chinese architecture, the oldest standing Catholic Church and beautiful parks. Take the following tour to discover the most popular and prominent attractions in Xicheng District of Beijing.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 8.4 Km or 5.2 Miles

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