Forbidden City and Jingshan Park

On the first full day at Beijing, we visited the Forbidden City and Jingshan Park. Although most of us had already been to Forbidden City, it was nice to see the beautiful architectures once again. After we went through the entrance with the iconic picture of Mao Zedong, the symmetrical layout along a central North-South axis caught my eyes. Well organized structures and beautiful decorations of the palace explained why Forbidden City is one of the most popular visiting spots in Beijing. Even though many architectures resemble each other, our tour guide, William, walked through the difference and details of each.

One of the fascinating stories was at this one small well in; during the Qing Dynasty, the Empress ordered that Consort Zhen, who supported Emperor Guanxu’s constitution reform attempts, be thrown into the small well that remains today at the Forbidden City. It took us about two hours to walk around 180 acres of the imperial palace. Afterwards, we headed to Jingshan Park, which is located right across the moat from the Forbidden City. At the beautiful royal landscape garden, we went to the top of Wenshui Hill, which is the highest point in Beijing. The clear view of the entire Forbidden City was nothing but breath-taking.