Beijing’s Best Sights
- Beijing’s Best Sights
- Beijing’s Best Restaurants
- Beijing’s Best Nightlife
- Beijing’s Best Arts and Leisure
- Beijing’s Best Shops
- Beijing’s Best Hotels
- Best of the Great Wall
- Shanghai’s Best Sights
- Shanghai’s Best Restaurants
- Shanghai’s Best Nightlife
- Shanghai’s Best Arts and Leisure
- Shanghai’s Best Shops
- Shanghai’s Best Hotels
- Shanghai’s Best Excursions
Best Historic Sight: Home to many of China’s emperors, the Forbidden City is the centerpiece of historic Beijing, both physically and metaphorically. Sitting at the very center of the capital, the site is the largest surviving palace complex in China, and a treasure trove of imperial history.
Most Morbidly Fascinating Sight: See the Great Helmsman in person at the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong in Tian’anmen Square, as well as memorial halls for other important Chinese leaders like Deng Xiaoping.
Most Iconic Sight: Scored into the world’s memory thanks to the events of 1989, Tian’anmen Square should be on your Beijing itinerary. It’s the biggest public plaza in the world, covering 440,000 square meters.
Best Activity for the Kids: If the children are tired of visiting temples, treat them to an afternoon with the fish at Blue Zoo Aquarium, home to Asia’s longest observation tunnel, and chock full of vibrant marine life and interactive displays.
Most Surprising Ancient Architecture: The Five Pagodas Temple is a refreshing change from other Buddhist and Daoist worship halls in the city. It was modeled on the “diamond throne” temples of Southeast Asia.
© Susie Gordon from Moon Beijing & Shanghai, 2nd Edition