The Forbidden City

The grand Forbidden City was where the 24 emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties lived and reigned over China.

The Forbidden City, which marks the city proper of Beijing, is a magnificent ancient palace complex originally constructed in 1406 A.D. during the Ming Dynasty. The majestic palace served as the imperial palace for the 24 emperors and their households, the national ceremonial and political hub during the Ming and Qing dynasties. Now it is widely-known as the largest, best-preserved ancient imperial palace in China. The Forbidden City in Beijing, the Versailles Palace in Paris, the Buckingham Palace in London, the Kremlin Palace in Moscow Russia and the White House in Washington are widely acknowledged as the Top 5 Palaces in the world.

The Forbidden City, covering an area of roughly 725,000 square meters, consists of approximately 8,707 individual rooms. With a rectangle shape, it is about 753 meters wide from west to east and 961 meters long from the south to the north. The wall is about 12 meters high. Around the palace there is a 52-meter-wide moat.

The Forbidden City can be divided into two parts by Gate of Heavenly Purity. To the south of Gate of Heavenly Purity is the Outer Palace while to the north of Gate of Heavenly Purity is the Inner Palace. The Outer Palace, centered by the Hall of Supreme Harmony, the Hall of Central Harmony and the Hall of Preserving Harmony, is where the emperors held morning assemblies and exercised their supreme powers. The Inner Palace, centered by Palace of Heavenly Purity, Jiaotai Hall and Palace of Earthly Tranquility, is where the emperors and their households lived. There lies the Imperial Garden to the north of the Palace of Earthly Tranquility where the emperors and other royal members could stroll about and have a rest. The Imperial Garden is home to a large number of graceful pavilions, inviting pools, ancient trees and rare flowers, etc.

The Forbidden City is also known as the Palace Museum. The marvelous museum which houses numerous cultural and historical relics is one of the finest museums in the world. The Forbidden City was approved as a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. It is also approved as a China National AAAAA Tourist Attraction by CNTA (short for National Tourism Administration of the People’s Republic of China). A visit to the Forbidden City will make your tours to Beijing China much more unforgettable. Every visitor will be pleasantly stunned at the enigmatic, magnificent palace.

Chinese Name: 紫禁城, 故宫or 故宫博物馆
Chinese Pingyin: Gu Gong or Zi Jin Cheng
Opening Hours: 08:30-17:00 with the last entry at 16:10.
Admission Fee: 60 RMB/person (roughly 11.43 NZD/person) during the peak season and 40 RMB/person (roughly 7.62 NZD/person) during the low season.
Location: 4 Jingshan Qianjie, Beijing, China
Phone: +86-10-85007420 and +86-10-85007421
Fax: +86-10-85007079
Website: http://www.dpm.org.cn/index1024768.html 
Email: gugong@dpm.org.cn
How to Get there: Get off at the station Zhongshan Park or the Tiananmen Gate by Public Bus 1,2, 4, 5, 10, 20, 22, 52, 54, 57, 120, 801; or at the station East Tiananmen Gate or West Tiananmen Gate by Metro Line 1; or at the station the Forbidden City by Public Bus 101, 103, 109, 812, 814.