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Visit the Forbidden City

Closed to the world for over 500 years, and home to emperors from the Ming and Qing Dynasties, the Forbidden City is a truly fascinating place. The buildings are mostly empty as most of the contents have now been removed and placed in museums.

However, the architecture and history of the city provides a detailed insight into the curious lives and customs of the past emperors who ruled from within its walls. The curators of the site usually hold vast exhibitions that showcase various elements of the Forbidden City's magnificent past, such as its opulent jewellery or staggering art. The vast site is filled with opulent treasures and intricately detailed, magnificent architecture, making a visit to the Forbidden City a once in a lifetime experience.

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who's been there

Audley Travel specialist Chris

Start planning your tailor-made trip by contacting one of our China specialists

Other experiences in Beijing

These activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences around where you're staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident's eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can suggest tours and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the local ways of life.

  • Beijing City Tour
    Tiananmen Square, Beijing

    Beijing City Tour

    Beijing City Tour

    To really experience Beijing you need to get out onto the streets. The Forbidden City is one of the most fascinating places in Beijing and is well worth a visit.

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  • Beijing's Hutongs
    Quiet Hutong, Beijing

    Beijing's Hutongs

    Beijing's Hutongs

    Take a tricycle tour of Beijing’s unique and famous Hutongs, a maze of old narrow back streets found in the Changiao area of the Western District.

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  • Summer Palace
    The Summer Palace, Beijing

    Summer Palace

    Summer Palace

    Located in the Haidian district in the north of Beijing, the Palace is a classical imperial garden embracing beautiful landscaped hills and lakes.

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  • Temple of Heaven
    Temple of Heaven, Beijing, China

    Temple of Heaven

    Temple of Heaven

    For a different insight into Chinese religion and history, a popular place to visit is the Temple of Heaven.

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  • The Great Wall at Jinshanling
    The Great Wall, Beijing

    The Great Wall at Jinshanling

    The Great Wall at Jinshanling

    Stretching for over 6,000 km to the Gobi desert in the far west, the Great Wall remains one of the world’s true must-see sights.

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  • The Legend of Kung Fu Performance
    Young monks practising their moves, Shaolin

    The Legend of Kung Fu Performance

    The Legend of Kung Fu Performance

    This exciting piece of theatre comprises a number of spectacular and highly skilled Kung Fu demonstrations, following the story of a young Shaolin Monk as he trains in the discipline.

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