The imperial Palace and the Great Wall, the two world-famous scenic spots, are know to all a must tourist destination for people visiting Beijing..
The Imperial Palace was originally called the Purple Forbidden City. It was the royal palace of the Ming Dynasties, the last two feudal dynasties in China. From east to west, it is 753 meters wide, and 961 meters long from north to south. It covers a total area of more than 720,000 square meters. It was constructed when the Emperor Yongle was in reign in the Ming Dynasty. Its construction got started in1406 and fundamentally completed in 1420. So it has a history of nearly 600 years. Altogether 24 emperors once lived and ruled in the palaces.
Though it was rebuilt and extended during the two dynasties, it still retains its original layout and gracefully, well representing the excellent tradition and the unique style of China’s ancient architectural art. This former royal palace has turned into a museum, preserving more than 900,000 pieces of treasures and royal court relics of various dynasties. They are all important materials for the study of history of the Ming and Qing Dynasties and the art of various dynasties.
Badaling is a well-known part of the Great-Wall which runs across the northern part of Beijing. To its south is the city of Beijing, north is Yanqing, west is Xuanhua of Hebei province and Datong of Shanxi province. Since it extents in all directions, it is given the name of Badaling, meaning “the hill extending to eight directions.” Badaling is 1000 meters above sea level. With constant ups and downs as well as numerous turns and twists along the range of hills it sits on, it looks very much like a dragon with imposing magnificence.
This part of the Great Wall was reconstructed in the Ming Dynasty. It was built on the ridges of the mountains. Laid out with huge and uniform bricks, the wall itself is tall and sturdy. Its foundation is made with slabs of granite and its top floor is paved with lime, therefore, it looks very neat and tidy. The wall is 8.5 meters high and 6.5 meters wide. Its top floor is 5.7 meters wide, quite enough for 5 horses gallop side by side or 10 people to walk abreast.