I saved Beijing for last because I think it has the most significant sites on the trip. My first stop was the Forbidden City. I took the subway – on Sunday – and it was like rush hour.

I could hardly believe that I was about to walk through the gates of THE Forbidden City – Wow what an incredible experience.

It was super cold the day of my visit and I arrived within 30 mins of opening and it was already packed.

It took 5 hours to get through everything and it was an amazing experience. I was alone and moved at a pretty good pace. This visit could easily take 10 hours at a leisurely pace. Walking through I wished I had done more research before hand to find pictures or portraits of some of the Emperors and Empresses.

I was struck at how simple the building material and interiors seemed. I expected that the building where the Emperor and Empresses lived would be very luxurious but the materials were mostly wood inside and out. Then also this was so long ago and the mindset of the inhabitants were related to religion and not worldly things.  The living areas where very small but the courtyards larger.

Again, a lot of walking.

Some pics below


Palace Building