For many visitors, the Forbidden City (紫禁城) is the highlight of China. It was the Imperial Palace of the Chinese emperor from 1420 until 1912. Today, it's known as the “Palace Musuem” (故宫博物院) because it houses a large number of ancient Chinese artifacts. It has 980 rooms, and the buildings exemplify China's ancient architecture. The compound was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site
in 1987. With 14 million annual visitors, it is the most visited museum in the world. Will you be among them?
Come, join my tour group!
The Forbidden City can get crowded. Luckily it's full of large pavilions.
The city is in the center of Beijing.
One of the temples inside the city. Remember, gold roofs are for emperors only.
Sometimes rock stars show up at the Forbidden City. Don't believe me? Just look at all of the paparazzi!
Dragon Turtle, Dragon Turtle, does whatever a turtle can.
An elaborate carved staircase.
The Forbidden City is also a museum, full of ancient artifacts.
There's a large clock room with timekeeping devices from around the world.
Everywhere you look, there are intricate carvings and paintings.
There are many statues in the Imperial Garden, including this elephant with backwards elbows.
Just north of the Forbidden City is Jingshan Park.
A moat surrounds the Forbidden City. This is the “First Ring” of Beijing.
Want more photos of the Forbidden City?
More photos from my first trip
Photos from my second trip