The Forbidden City
The Forbidden City (Chinese name: Gugong故宫) , is located in the center of the central axis of Beijing. This imperial palace is the world's largest and most complete existing wooden structure type palace buildings. It was listed as a World Cultural Heritage Site in 1987 by UNESCO. From 1420 to 1912, the Forbidden City had served as the home of 24 emperors, their households as well as the ceremonial and political center of Chinese government. Since 1925 the Forbidden City has been under the charge of the Palace Museum with extensive collection of artwork and artifacts.
The Forbidden City is a rectangle, with 961 metres (3,153 ft) from north to south and 753 metres (2,470 ft) from east to west. It consists of 980 surviving buildings with 8,886 bays of rooms or 9,999 rooms in common myth. It is divided into two parts. The southern section, or the Outer Court, is home to the official buildings where the emperor carried out national affairs and publicly ruled. The northern section, or the Inner Court, was where he lived with his royal family. Nowadays it is one way system to visit this palace, entering from Meridian Gate (south), passing through outer and inner court, finally exiting from Gate of Divine Prowess(north). Normally it will take at least three hours to half day to have a look of every opened hall, depending on your time and energy.
April 1st - October 31st: 8:30 to 17:00, last entry: 16:10
November 1st - March 31st: 8:30 to 16:30, last entry: 15:40
April 1st - October 31st: 60 yuan p.p.
November 1st - March 31st: 40yuan p.p.
Besides, you can book tickets online in advance. If you buy ticket on site, don’t forget to bring your passport.
NOTICE: Apart from the statutory holidays and the summer holidays (July 1 to August 31), the Palace Museum will be closed on Monday. If you want a better understanding of this fabulous palace, renting an audio guide is recommended (40yuan for one time)