ago, Beijing was a centre trading town for the Mongols, Koreans and tribes
from Shandong and central China. The city was ground by Genghis Khan around
1200 AD, he passed on to his grandson Kublai Khan as Dadu, or Great Capital.
In 14th century, Zhu Yanhang take over the city and ushering in the Ming
Dynasty. The city was renamed Beiping and for the next 35 years the capital
was shifted to Nanjing. When Beiping was announced as capital, it was
renamed to Beijing. Under the Manchu invaders in the 17th century, Beijing
was thoroughly renovated and expanded. In 1949, Mao Zedong's proclamation
of a `People's Republic' in Tiananmen Square, there begin the Communists.
located in the north-eastern part of China. The city limits of Beijing
extend to 80km , including the urban and the suburban areas and the nine
counties under its administration. Beijing municipality has a total area
of 16,800 sq km, is a place of very orderly design. Places of interest
are either very easy to find if they're situated on the avenues, or very
difficult to find if they're situated down the narrow alleys. The Beijing
Municipality is carved up into 10 districts and eight counties.
The Forbidden City is the biggest and the most preserved ancient buildings
in China. The old world of beautiful concubines and priapic emperors,
eunuchs and conspicuous wealth, still hovers around the lush gardens,
courtyards, pavilions and great halls of the palace. Most of the buildings
are post-18th century. A permanent restoration squad takes about 10 years
to renovate its 720,000sq metres, 800 buildings, and 9000 rooms, by which
time it's time to start all over again.
The Summer Palace with its cool features - water, gardens and hills -
was place of choice for vacationing emperors and Dowager Empresses in
the old times. Today, the place is packed in summer with Beijing residents
taking full advantage of Kunming Lake which takes up three quarters of
the park. The main building is the lyrically named Hall of Benevolence
& Longevity, while along the north shore is the Long Corridor. It is named
as "Long Corridor because there are over 700m (2300ft) of corridor,
filled with mythical paintings and scenes.
Tiananmen Square is Mao's creation, as is Chang'an Jie. It was a gathering
place and the site of government offices in the imperial days. Today the
square is a place for people to wander and fly kites or buy balloons for
the kids. Surrounding or studding the square is a mish-mash of monuments
past and present: Tiananmen (Gate of Heavenly Peace), the Chinese Revolution
History Museum, the Great Hall of the People, Qianmen (Front Gate), the
Mao Mausoleum, where you can purchase Mao memorabilia, and the Monument
to the People's Heroes.
Tiantan Park is an icon of the entire city, set in a 267 hectares park,
with four gates at the cardinal points, and abounded by walls to the north
and east. All of the buildings in the park, including the Round Altar,
the Imperial Vault of Heaven and the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests
are tangible conversations between the gods and mortals. Thel construction
is an awesome display of god in the architecture and the devil in the
detail. Tiantan Park remains an important meeting place and many city
dwellers start the day with a spot of t'ai chi, dancing or game-playing
in the park. By 9am, come and visit this park, you will be able to see
what Beijingers do before breakfast.
Great Wall of China
The Great Wall was originally built 2000 years ago by the Qing dynasty.Today
it's a tourist attraction and the Wonder of the World. Majority of visitors
climb the wall at Badaling, along with the tourist packs, the touts, and
the sellers. If you want to experience the wall far from this madding
crowd, you'd do better to travel a little farther and take a walk on the
wilder side of the Huanghua section, 60km north of Beijing. It's a classic
and well-preserved example of Ming dynastry.