The Forbidden City & Palace Museum
The Palace Museum, 4 Jingshan Qianjie, Beijing, 100009
The Forbidden City, located in the heart of Beijing, was the imperial palace of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. It was the home of the Emperor of China and the centre of government of China.
Built from 1406 to 1420 by the Yongle Emperor of the Ming dynasty, it was later taken over by the Qing dynasty until 1924, when Emperor Puyi was expelled. For nearly six hundred years, 24 emperors lived and ruled from this palace.
Today, it houses the Palace Museum with its vast collections of paintings, calligraphy, ceramics and other decorative objects. It is one of the most prestigious museums in China and the world.
The Forbidden City is surrounded by 10-metre high walls, covering an area of 720,000 square meters. Each of the four sides is has a gate, the Meridian Gate on the south, the Gate of Divine Prowess on the north and the Eastern and Western Prosperity Gates. The Palace Museum is approached through the Gate of Heavenly Peace, after the Meridian Gate.
Due to its centrality and restricted access, the palace was called The Forbidden City.
On October 1925, in the course of a grand ceremony, the Palace Museum opened its doors to visitors, and in 1987 it was made a World Heritage site by UNESCO.
The Palace Museum is open every day, all year round (temporary closures are possible)
April 1st-October 31st: 8.30 am-5 pm. Last entry 4.10 pm, last tickets sold at 4 pm. Adults 60 yuan.
November 1st-March 31st: 8.30 am-4.30 pm. Last entry 3.40 pm. Adults 40 yuan.