Hotel pickup in downtown area of Beijing. 40-minute on Tiananmen Square. It has witnessed many significant events in Chinas history. Next head for the Imperial Ancestral Temple (30-minute visiting time). It held the most important festival occasions in history.
The highlight today is the Forbidden City (4-hours visiting time). It is time to immerse yourself in the splendid architecture of the Forbidden City which represents the essence and culmination of traditional Chinese architectural accomplishment. Relax over a Chinese lunch in a local restaurant around lunchtime.
1. the Meridian Gate (Wu men): Climb up inner city walls, visit the gate towers at East Prosperity Gate (Donghua men)
2. Hall of Martial Valor (Wuying dian): Visit "Painting and Calligraphy Gallery"
3. Hall of Literary Brilliance (Wenhua dian): Visit "Ceramics Gallery"
4. Gate of Supreme Harmony (Taihe men): Walk through the central stairway which was reserved exclusively for the Emperor and his immediate attendants
5. Hall of Supreme Harmony (Taihe dian): The place where Chinese emperors hosted their enthronement and wedding ceremonies.
6. Hall of Central Harmony (Zhonghe dian): It was used by the Emperor to prepare and rest before and during ceremonies.
7. Hall of Preserving Harmony (Baohe dian): It was used for rehearsing ceremonies, and was also the site of the final stage of the Imperial examination.
8. Palace of Heavenly Purity (Qianqing gong): The residence of the Emperor and the Emperor's audience hall
9. Hall of Union (Jiaotai dian): 25 Imperial Seals of the Qing dynasty are displayed here
10. Palace of Earthly Tranquility (Kunning gong): The residence of the Empress
11. Hall of Mental Cultivation (Yangxin dian): The palace where the dowager empresses Ci'an and Cixi held audiences with princes and ministers behind a silk screen during their regencies for young emperors, who both succeeded to the throne as children in the second half of the 19th century.
12. Area of Six Western Palaces
13. Imperial Garden (Yu huayuan)
14. Gate of Divine Prowess (Shenwu men)
Then visit Summer Palace (90-minute visiting time), the largest and the most well-preserved royal park in China. It is famed as The Museum of Royal Gardens. After this orientation tour of Summer Palace, you will be captivated by the traditional Chinese philosophy of harmonious balance between natural landscape, stream, water, and artificial man-made structures including pavilions, bridges, and halls.
Transfer to a nearest subway station. Service ends at 5:00pm. Your tour guide will tell you how to take subway, or help you to find a taxi. Coach transfer back to your hotel is not provided due to traffic condition in rush hour.