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Home China Travel   China Travel Guide   Beijing   The Forbidden City

China Travel Guide: Beijing
The Forbidden City (Palace Museum)


The Forbidden City (Gu Gong)

The Forbidden City, also known as the Imperial Palace or Palace Museum (or Gu Gong in Chinese pronunciation), is located in the center of Beijing. Built between 1406 and 1420, it was the imperial residence of 24 emperors of the Ming and Qing (1368-1911) dynasties. Today it has become one of the most important tourist attractions in Beijing.

The Forbidden City

The entire palace area, rectangular in shape and 720,000 square meters in size, takes up one-third of the 8 kilometer-long central axis of Beijing’s old city proper, from the city gate of Yongdingmen on the south to the Drum and Bell towers on the north. This harmonious assemblage of buildings displays the best characteristics of Chinese architecture -- majestic style, flawless construction, and fine coordination of the whole and the parts.

The Forbidden City is also one of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites.

the forbidden city, palace museum, go gong of beijing
Taihe Hall (Taihe Dian) of the Forbidden City

Related News:

Forbidden City to open new area to visitors
2012-04-20 23:42:00 Xinhua News

BEIJING, April 20 (Xinhua) -- The Palace Museum in the heart of Beijing, more popularly known as the Forbidden City, will open its Huangji Palace to the public before the May Day holiday, the museum said Friday.

Huangji Palace, built in 1689, was used to hold ceremonies for emperors after they finished handling state affairs.

According to a statement of the museum, the refurbished palace will open to the public only during major holidays, including the May Day and the National Day holidays and summer holiday.

The Palace Museum will adjust the palace's opening hours in accordance with weather conditions to protect the safety of its cultural relics, the statement said.

north-east corner tower of the forbidden city of beijing
North-Eastern Corner Tower of of the Forbidden City, Beijing

Shan Jixiang, curator of the Palace Museum, said the opening of Huangji Palace is part of the museum's plan to enlarge the areas for visitors, from about 45 percent at present to 76 percent in the future.

Huangji Palace used to be an exhibition hall where calligraphy works, paintings and jewelry were displayed. The palace no longer functions as a display area since undergoing renovations in 2004.



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