F&W Free Preview All You Coastal Living Cooking Light Food and Wine tab Health myRecipes Southern Living Sunset
My F&W
quick save (...)
North of Tiananmen Square , Haidian
Beijing , China http://www.travelchinaguide.com/cityguides/beijing/forbidden.htm
86 10 6513-2255

It doesn’t have a street address—which is only fitting for a place that was once considered the center of the universe. The Forbidden City’s vast, gorgeous compound of buildings, courtyards, and pathways—all surrounded by fortress-like walls—was completed during the reign of the Ming dynasty in the 15th century, and for hundreds of years it was open only to emperors and their kin and servants. Today, however, it’s a public museum space that occupies the literal and figurative heart of Beijing. Properly exploring it requires at least half a day; history buffs should definitely take part in the self-guided audio tour, which gives intriguing insights into the way the emperors lived. (For Sons of Heaven, every second of every day followed a rigid ceremonial theme.)

Tip: Avoid the plausible-sounding students at the entrance offering to be guides. Scams are common whereby the visitor is whisked to a post-tour tea ceremony and presented with a whopping bill.

advertisement
The Dish
Receive delicious recipes and smart wine advice 4x per week in this e-newsletter.
The Wine List Weekly pairing plus best bottles to buy.
F&W Daily One sensational dish served fresh every day.
American Express Publishing ("AEP") may use your email address to send you account updates and offers that may interest you. To learn more about the ways we may use your email address and about your privacy choices, read the AEP Privacy Statement.
How we use your email address
advertisement
Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Run with chefs and wine experts in the Celebrity Chef 5K and dance all night at Gail Simmons’ Last Bite Dessert Party during the FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen, June 20-22.