- Ranked fifteenth in world wonder list by Hillman Wonders.
- Declared a World Heritage Site in 1987.
- Massive palace complex comprising more than nine thousand rooms and
spread over 250 acres.
- The image of Tiananmen, the entrance to the Imperial City, appears on
the seal of the People's Republic of China.
- Museum of Chinese antiques and treasures.
Plethora of majestic structures sit in the magnificent Forbidden City. Most
prominent among them are:
Hall for Ancestry Worship(Fengxiandian)
Hall of Celestial and Terrestrial Union (Jiaotaidian)
Hall of Central Harmony (Zhonghedian)
Hall of Joyful Longevity(Leshoutang)
Hall of Mental Cultivation(Yangxindian)
Hall of Preserved Harmony (Baohedian)
Hall of Supreme Harmony(Taihedian)
Gate of Celestial Purity(Qianqingmen)
Gate of Divine Military Genius
East Flowery Gate
West Flowery Gate
Palace of Celestial Purity(Qianqinggong)
Palace of Terrestrial Tranquility(Kunninggong)
Palace of Tranquil Longevity(Ningshougong)
Six Eastern Palaces(Dongliugong)
Six Western Palaces(Xiliugong)
Huge Stone Carving
Nine Dragons Screen
12,000 square metre Imperial Garden, which lies at the northern end of the
Forbidden City, was used by the members of the imperial household to relax.
A labyrinth of old trees and pavilions, the garden footpaths, made from
small stones, are paved with mosaic patterns. made from small stones.
The Forbidden City is encircled by some more picturesque gardens.
Zhongnanhai Park, the complex of buildings centred on two lakes is located
towards west. To the north-west sits Beihai Park, which also centres on a
lake. To the north lies Jingshan Park, also known as Jing Shan or Coal Hill.
Forbidden City: The Palace Museum
The Forbidden City, the colossal museum of cultural relics in China, is
also known as Palace Museum. Itself the witness of the reigns of twenty-four
emperors, it showcases one million precious historical relics relating from
the Shang Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty.
The Forbidden City, a priceless architectural marvel, fully embodies the
artistic features and style of ancient Chinese imperial structure. Majority
of structures, exuding harmony and symmetry, were built with wood, resting
on blue-and-white stone foundations, roofed with tiles glazed yellow.
The Hall of Supreme Harmony, the Hall of Central Harmony and the Hall of
Preserving Harmony, which are within the Outer Part, and the Hall of
Heavenly Purity, the Hall of Union and the Hall of Earthly Tranquility,
which adorn the inner part, stand in a line from south to north on the
central axis. The throne symbolizing imperial power is placed at the centre
of this axis.
World's largest palace complex, the Forbidden City, is reputed to host
9,999 rooms. Encased by a mighty defensive wall and a deep moat are five
halls, seventeen palaces, and numerous other buildings.
Every wall is pierced by a majestic gate. The four corners of the curtain
wall are strengthened by uniquely structured towers, which were used to
overlook both the palace and the sprawling city.
The Forbidden City is segregated into two parts- Outer and Inner. Buildings
of the Outer Part were used mainly for ceremonial purposes while the Inner
Part structures were where the Emperor worked and resided.
Yellow, the imperial color, flows over the rooftops. Red color of the
walls, was considered symbol of happiness and auspiciousness. However,.
Wenyuange, the royal library, with a black roof, is an exception. The
Chinese believed that black symbolised water and could extinguish fire.
The year was 1406. Two lakh men combined their hard labour for fourteen
years. The result was the Forbidden City in1420.
Till 1644, the Forbidden City remained the imperial seat of the Ming
Dynasty. Then, the Qing Dynasty took the reins of the imperial power.
The Forbidden City served as the home of twenty-four emperors- fourteen of
the Ming Dynasty and ten of the Qing Dynasty. With the abdication of Puyi,
the last emperor of China, it lost it's place as the political seat of
A Forbidden City
The Forbidden City gained this mysterious title because entry was banned
without imperial permission. The offender had to part with his life.
Forbidden City : Names
The huge palace complex is called by various names:
||New official name
||Old official name
| Interesting Facts
- Once the number of rooms in the Forbidden City was 9,999. The Chinese
considered 9 a lucky number.
- Ringed by a 10 meter (33 foot) high protective wall. The defense was
strengthened by a moat as wide as a river.
- The Forbidden City occupies 720,000 square metres of land, which is
equivalent to twenty plus football fields.
- The colossal complex was home of some six thousand people, including
the imperial family.
- Puyi, the last resident emperor of the Forbidden City, was
permanently evicted in 1924. He was depicted in Bertolucci's 1987 epic
movie 'The Last Emperor'.
- The British are the only power who succeeded in capturing the
Forbidden City. They did so during the Second Anglo-Chinese Opium War,
- The earth excavated during the construction of the moat was piled up
at a single place. The result was Jingshan Hill, an artificial hill.
How To Reach
- Jinshan Hill is the best place to watch the splendid layout of the
- Not forget to view the Tiananmen Square from rostrum of the front
- You could end up paying much more than you should for your souvenirs.
So be careful.
You can take taxis/cabs from Beijing Airport and Railway Station. Local
buses also ferry passengers to the area. Qianmen is the nearest underground
local train station.