More Beijing Information



Travel Index



Contents

City Map

(a)

Tian-an-men Square 

(b)

Forbidden City

(c)

Tian-tan Park - Temple of Heaven 

(d)

Bell and Drum Tower (Gu-lou)

(e)

Yong-he-gong (Temple) 

(f)

Dong-wah-men night Market 

(g)

Wang-fu-jing food Street  

(h)

Jing-shan Park  

(i)

Xuan-wu Area  

(j)

Bei-hai Park 

(k) 

Tak-sing-men Quin Lou  



City Map





(a) Tian-an-men Square Subway Line 1 (15)


It is the center of the Capital, occupying an area of nearly 100 acres, having many tourist attractions within walking distance.



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a1. Great Hall of the People  


It is situated on the western side of the Square. Sessions of The National People's Congress and Chinese Parliament are held here. The building is about 560 thousand square feet and took 10 months to build. The major Assembly Hall can accommodate 10,000 people. Arts & crafts representing 56 Chinese nationalities are also displayed inside the building.



a2. Chairman Mao Ze-Dong Memorial Hall  


It was completed in November 1971 where the body of Chairman Mao is displayed.



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a3. Monument of the People's Heroes 


It is a tall granite obelisk standing on a two-tiered marble terrace, with Chairman Mao's calligraphy saying, "The People's Heroes are immortal" inscribed on the north face.



a4. The Revolutionary and Historical Museum  


It is situated on the eastern side of Tian An Men Square and has two museums combined into one, namely, Museum of History and Museum of the Revolution.



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a5. Tian-an-men  


This was the front gate during both Ming and Qing Dynasty, is one of the few remaining gates of the Imperial City Wall constructed in the reign of the Ming Emperor Yong-le (A.D. 1403 -1425), it was known as Sing-tian-men . Reconstructed and renamed during Qing Dynasty as Tian-an-men.

It is about 33.7 meters high, with 5 arched entrances, where the middle arched and the middle bridge in front of the building reserved for the Emperor only.






a6. Qian Men


This is one of the few remaining gates of the Imperial City Wall constructed in the reign of the Ming Emperor Yong-le (A.D. 1403 -1425). The double-gate system was used to protect the inner City from enemy attacks.









(b) Forbidden City


Twenty-four Emperors of the last few dynasties ruled from the Forbidden City. It covers an area of 72 thousand square meters having 9,999 and a half rooms (9 means forever in Chinese) built within. It is surrounded by a 10-meter high wall with a perimeter of 6 km, which has a towers at each corner with a pavilion on top, together with four gates, namely Meridian Gate (North), Gate of Divine Prowess (South), West Flowery Gate and East Flowery Gate for entering into the City. The South and North gates are the main entrances for tourists. The Forbidden City is now a museum and contains magnificent collections of Porcelain, Bronzes, Paintings, Jade and other Treasures.














(c) Tian-tan Park - Temple of Heaven 


The temple was built in the 15th Century for the Emperor to spend a night and pray for good harvest once a year. It consists of four ceremonial buildings namely Qi Nain Dan (Temple of Annual Prayer), Huang Qiong Yu (Temple of Gods), Huan Qiu Tan (Round Altar) and Zhai Gong (Hall of Abstinence); all set in the 270 hectare Tian-tan Park.



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Qi Naun Dan (Temple of Annual Prayer)

The structure is about 40 meter high; built with wood, without using nails, it consists of three levels of glazed blue tile roofs and is set on a triple marble terrace with balustrades surrounding each level.

Outside

The outside building is decorated in red, blue and green colors with elaborate gilt overlay.




Inside

It consists of 24 wooden pillars made from wood shipped from Southern China and arranged in 3 circles.

Arrangement of the 24 Wooden Pillars

Outer Circle
12 pillars represent 12 months of the Chinese lunar calendar.

Middle Circle 12 pillars represent 12 periods of the day (hours) according to the traditional Chinese day (2 hours per period).

Inner Circle 4 pillars represent 4 annual seasons





(decorated roof)


Huang Qiong Yu (Temple of the Gods)

This is another circular temple built with wood without nails, having a blue tiled roof with a gilt globe at the top. 

Circular wall - when one whispers from one side of the wall, the voice will echo back from the opposite direction.





Huan Qiu Tan (Round Altar)

This is situated at the southern side of the Qi Nian Dan (Temple of Annual Prayer) where the Emperor came to make sacrifice to heaven. It comprises 3 tiers with a white marble balustrade which represents Man, Earth and Heaven.




Zhai Gong (Hall of Abstinence)

The Emperor stayed here on the night before the Harvest festival ceremony.



(d) Bell and Drum Tower (Gu-lou) Subway: Line 2 (17)

It was built during the Yuen Dynasty , Kublai Khan's era in 1272, and was known as the Tower of Orderly Administration (Qi-zheng-lou). Rebuilt after a fire in 1297 in Yuen Dynasty . The building was reconstructed in 1420 during the Ming Dynasty Yong-le era. And extensive restoration in Qing Dynasty was implemented.

Bell Tower, 33 meter high, was first used during Ming Emperor Yong-le, but destroyed by fire, later rebuilt by Emperor Qian-long of Qing Dynasty in 1747.






The Drum Tower

In the olden days, it acted like a clock, by having drumbeats at a certain time, the 25 drums were located on the upper floor, with a size of 1.6 meters in diameter for the main drum and 1.12 meters for the rest, but nowadays only one damaged drum survives.

During Qing Dynasty, 13 drumbeats at 7:00pm every night indicated the beginning of the night, followed by one single drumbeat at every two hours interval.

The officials normally woke up at the third single drumbeat (1:00am) to get ready for Court duty in the Palace (Forbidden-city).

The fourth single drumbeat (3:00am), the officials were already gathering together outside Wu-men (Meridian Gate).

The fifth single drumbeat (5:00am), they would enter the Court to wait for the Emperor's instructions or summons.




(Steps leading up to the tower)











(e) Yong-he-gong (Temple) 


Yong-he-gong located at the north-eastern part of the city, in 1693, it was the residence of the third son of Emperor Kang-xi , Yong-zhen .

In 1725, after Yong-zhen became the Emperor, the place was converted to a Lama temple, known as Yong-he-gong.

The main temple, houses a 26m high sandalwood Maitreya Buddha, which is the biggest wood carved Buddha in the world.





Buddha






(f) Dong-wah-men night Market  (Food market)

Subway: Line 1 (16 - Wang-fu-jing)

Location: Dong-an-men-da Jie 



Opening hours: 4:30pm to 10:30pm






(g) Wang-fu-jing food street  

Subway: Line 1 (16 - Wang-fu-jing)

Location: Wan-fu-jing-da jie .



Opening hours: 9:00am to 10:00pm










(h) Jing-shan Park  


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Located at the northern side of Forbidden City, it was part of the Imperial Garden in Ming Dynasty, known as Coal-hill .

The last Ming Emperor, Chong-zhen (1627 – 1644) was fleeing from rebellion army, and hanged himself here.

Nowadays, a stone inscribed in Chinese marked his suicide location. From this point, steps start leading to the top of the hill, where the Buddha pavilion is located, the breath-taking panoramic view is surly that one cannot be missed.







(i) Xuan-wu Area  

Subway: Line 2 (4 - He-ping-men)



i1

Lui-li-chong-si Jie and Lui-li-chong-dong Jie are the best place to shop for Calligraphy equipments such as brushes, paper (sun-tze), Chinese painting..etc

Tai-shan-nai area was the busiest place during Qing Dynasty. Nowadays, a narrow street houses several traditional Chinese shops that one must stroll around in order to experience the atmosphere, the shops, decor ..etc.

Surely one cannot resist the temptation of "come and get me" and load up with souvenirs to take home.



(Lui-li-chong-dong Jie)



i2

Famous "Peking duck" restaurant - Chun-chu-tak .




(j) Bei-hai Park  



It is located at the north-western corner of Forbidden City; about 70 hectares with water surface of 39 hectares.

From 10th century onward, different features were gradually added, but a major construction was started in the reign of Emperor Qian-long (1736), in order to make this park as an imperial garden.

After busy sightseeing around Beijing, this is one of the best place to relax, sit around and experience the local people life-style.











(k) Tak-sing-men Quin Lou  


In Ming Dynasty, soldiers had to tap a Lucky-animal known as "P-yeo" before leaving for any battle.

Have time, do visit this place and also check this out the story about this "P-yeo".


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