Thursday, March 31, 2011

Rick's Roadshow: Beijing, China- Day 2 The Forbidden City

Welcome back to Rick's Roadshow: Beijing, China. Today I would like to bring you along on my visit to what is known as "The Forbidden City". Located in the heart of Beijing, it was the original Chinese Imperial Palace dating back to the Ming Dynasty. It was in use for five hundred years as a seat of government and the working residence for the emperors, staff and officials. Amazingly, the structure was built in the early 1400's with nearly 1,000 buildings and structures as part of the elaborate labyrinth.

As I stood in Tienanmen Square, just at the entrance of the Forbidden City,  I couldn't help but think back to 1989 when the protests took place here. Seems like it was just yesterday, but that was quite a few years back, now. At any rate, I looked around for signs of the Communist state in which I was visiting. Other than an abundance of police roaming the square, it felt like any other big city public area. 
National Museum of China 

And now, we enter The Forbidden City, which is enormous. You walk through a series of multiple gates (buildings) which eventually lead to the Emperor. As I am here on business, I don't have much time to write content for this blog post, so forgive me if I just post all the photos from The Forbidden City. Enjoy the show.

Can you see the dragon?

Here are a few photos of the various Throne Rooms for the Emperor. They were each in different buildings, varying in size and design based on the need of the delegation meeting with the Emperor. 

Below is the entrance to the Emperor's Garden, peaceful and beautiful.


As we finally prepared to exit the Emperor's garden, I looked up and saw in the distance even more buildings as part of the Forbidden City...

This last photo above is from outside of The Forbidden City. You can see the water moat- on the corner is what was a watch tower. As you can imagine there are many of them around the walls of the city. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to visit this incredible piece of history. It certainly exceeded my expectations as a tourist, and as a student of world history. I would definitely recommend a visit here, but only if you like walking! My colleagues and I moved fairly quickly, but could have easily spent a full day if we wanted to do so. If you like Asian history, particularly of the Ming Dynasty, be sure to check out The Forbidden City. Tomorrow I'll return with a few photos from Taiwan, where I have already arrived and once again enjoying the hospitality of the Taiwanese people. Rick's Roadshow continues from Taipei...


KathyA said...

Very, very interesting photos, Rick. They really did take their thrones seriously, didn't they?

kenju said...

As I am likely to never see it in person, I appreciate all your photos, Rick, and the details. Thanks!

Palm Springs Savant said...

Beijing was an interesting place to visit, without a doubt! glad you enjoyed the photos. -Rick

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

It is ALL Magnificent! I was thinking the same thing that Jenju said---I will never get to cisit any of these places, so I thank you Rick for sharing your wonderful pictures of this very incredible and exotic place!


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