Beijing City aerial view featuring the Beijing National Arena, also known as The Bird's Nest, built for the 2008 Olympic arena



Take a trip to Beijing on your China vacation.

Beijing is the capital city of China and features the second-largest urban population in the country. As the political and educational centre of China, Beijing is home to many government official buildings and embassy areas, as well as universities, all to be seen on a China vacation.

Formerly known as Peking, Beijing is also China’s cultural centre and features many historic buildings and sites. The city, which features numerous districts, is comprised of several rectangular-shaped ring roads, which encircle Beijing’s centre. In the city centre is Tiananmen Square, Beijing’s most important landmark and the site of the infamous massacre of student activists by the People’s Liberation Army in 1989. This public square is surrounded by various museums. The Forbidden City, a relatively untouched palace found just south of Tiananmen Square, was home to the Imperial Court during the Ming and Qing Dynasties.

Along with historic buildings, there is modern architecture to be found in Beijing, including the landmark Bird’s Nest Stadium, home of the 2008 Summer Olympics.

An excursion on China tour package to The Great Wall of China (approximately one hour away from the city), a Hutong city pedicab tour, a magnificent stroll through the Summer Palace, and a Peking duck dinner are just some of the cultural experiences that Beijing has to offer.

At a Glance
CurrencyChinese Yuan (CNY)

Top Attractions

The Great Wall of China

As you first look upon the Great Wall, it is impossible not to be awestruck by this man-made structure. Construction started in the 7th century BC, with additions and rebuilding continuing until the 16th century AD. The Great Wall was built to keep out the warring invaders of the north, but additional sections were extended eastward for nearly 6,700 kilometres. The Badaling section is the most well-preserved section of the Wall. You can climb to its top and walk for a mile in either direction: the Great Wall snakes ahead through the mountains as far as you can see.

The Forbidden City (the Palace Museum)

In the heart of the capital lies the Forbidden City, built during the Ming dynasty in 1406. The Forbidden City is actually a city-within-a-city; with 9999 rooms spread over 250 acres. During the Ming and Qing dynasty, 24 emperors made their homes in the Forbidden City and forbade commoners from entering. The Emperor's Palace has been transformed into a museum that holds many treasures of the Imperial Family.

Tian An Men Square

Known as the Gate of Heavenly Peace, it is located across the street from the main entrance to the Forbidden City.

The Temple of Heaven

This masterpiece of Ming architecture is one of the most photographed buildings in the world due to its elegant beauty and symmetry. Built-in 1420, it was the place where Ming and Qing emperors (Sons of Heaven) prayed to heaven for a good harvest. Music plays softly through the day in a 660-acre park surrounding the temple.

The Summer Palace

Built-in 1750, the Palace overlooks tranquil Kunming Lake. There you can stroll along corridors where royal families spent their summers hundreds of years ago.

The Ming Tombs

Large stone animals and human figures line the famous Sacred Way, the entrance to the burial grounds. Set into the hillside is a complex of tombs of 13 emperors from the Ming dynasty.

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