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Beijing is the home to many long-standing historical wonders. The ‘heart of China’ for over 800 years, Beijing is the site of must-see attractions. Forbidden City is the largest imperial palace complex in the world, boasting over 900 palaces. Built in the 15th Century, it represents the power of the Ming and Qing dynasties. Another must-see is the iconic Great Wall of China which spans five provinces. In Beijing you can view one of the 8 wonders of the world and also climb a portion of the Badaling Great Wall. Tiananmen Square at the centre of the city hosts many important sites and national monuments celebrating Chinese history.
Modern Beijing Developments
Beijing is a flourishing modern metropolis and has many noteworthy developments for tourists to explore. The Chinese Ethnic Culture Park celebrates the 56 ethnic groups that make up the People’s Republic of China. Ethnic festivals and events are held here and samples of cultural relics and architectural styles are exhibited. The National Centre for the Performing Arts is located near The Great Hall of the People and is the scene for regular ballet, opera and musical performances. Designed by a French architect and opened in 2007, it is a significant display of modern Beijing.
Parks and Gardens
The city of Beijing is gifted with many beautiful parks and gardens, some home to pretty plants and scenic surrounds, while others contain additional attractions and displays. Jingshan Park behind the Forbidden Garden is a royal landscape garden and contains the highest point in Beijing on Jingshan Hill. The biggest Peony rose garden in Beijing is here, while there are many sacred sites used by the emperors of the Qing dynasty. Jingdong Grand Canyon covers 6 square kilometres to Beijing’s east and contains caves, waterfalls and a reservoir. A number of temples and tombs lie to the east of the canyon and are also worth visiting.
Temples and Tombs
Beijing is rich in historic monuments and religious sites. The Temple of Heaven is a sacred site where the Ming and Qing emperors held a ‘heaven ceremony’ and was first built in 1420. The Temple of Confucius is one of a few sites across China where people showed their respect for Confucius, the popular philosopher and teacher. The Ming Tombs are north-west of Beijing and where you can go underground to discover the tombs of 13 emperors of the Ming Dynasty. Wanshou Temple is another Ming Dynasty temple in Beijing, a Buddhist temple home to the Beijing Art Museum.