Beijing Day 1 highlights

  1. Tiananmen Square (0.5 hour recommended time for a visit)
  2. Forbidden City (4-5 hours)
  3. National Museum of China (2-3 hours)
  4. Jingshan Park (1 hour)

Total time for a sightseeing without pauses: 7.5-9.5 hours

Although Tiananmen Square (largest Public Square in the world), Forbidden City (former imperial palace), Jingshan Park and National Museum of China are all next to each other, due to the size of the Forbidden City and National Museum of China, it is not easy to visit them all in one day.

On Day 1 you should visit Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City, but if you are too tired you can skip either National Museum of China or Jingshan Park, or both. If you would like to skip only one of these two, try to visit National Museum of China. However, be aware that last entry in the National Museum of China is at 16:00.

Due to the queues at the entrance of the Forbidden City, you should be at Tiananmen Square before 9:00. Tiananmen Square is huge, but half an hour is enough for a visit. North of the Tiananmen Square is a south gate (Meridian Gate; 午门; Wu men), and entrance in the Forbidden City. In the Forbidden City you can enter only through the south gate, but you can exit through north (Gate of Divine Might; 神武门; Shenwu men) and east (East Prosperity Gate; 东华门; Donghua men) gates. West gate (West Prosperity Gate; Xihua men) is restricted to staff. Tour the Forbidden City with our step by step walking tour.

After you finish your Forbidden City visit exit on a north gate (Gate of Divine Might), because just across is the entrance to the Jingshan Park. East of Tiananmen Square is National Museum of China.