Beijing the seat of power in the People's Republic of China, and it has been so for quite some time. It is home to the Forbidden City as well as the Palace Museum. The Forbidden City was home to the emperors and their households during the Ming and Qing Dynasty. The city is home to 20,693,000 and is a major logistical hub with its Beijing Capital International Airport being the second busiest in the world by passenger traffic after O'hare International Airport in Chicago. Below is an overview of how the city has evolved over the generations.
1. There is evidence that the city was inhabited as early as 250,000 years ago. It is also evident that about 27,000 years ago, the city was home to the Paleolithic Homo sapiens.
2. 11th to 7th century BC - The city of Ji became the first walled city in Beijing.
3. 1153 - Jin Dynasty made Beijing their Central Capital.
4. 1264 to 1293 - The Yuan Dynasty ordered the construction of a new city adjacent to the ancient ruins of Jin Dynasty. This will give the city a new leaf of life and enhance its position as the capital of the northern fringe of China proper.
5. 1368 - The Ming dynasty started ruling the northern territory and would initiate the construction of Forbidden City from 1406 to 1420. Other popular attractions built during this era were the Temple of Heaven and Tian'anmen. Note that the city of Beijing was formerly designated as the official capital of the Ming Dynasty in 1620. Li Zicheng's peasant army in 1644 ended the dynasty but would abandon the city on the arrival of Manchu army of Prince Dorgon who would later establish the Qing Dynasty.
6. The Qing Dynasty would rule China until the Republican Era in the early 20th century.
7. 1911-1937 - The republican era ruled for the shortest time in the history of China. They would suffer defeat due to a disjointed front that would allow the Japanese to capitalize on this and occupy the city until 1945 when they were defeated.
8. To date, the government in power started under the firebrand Chinese communist - Mao Zedong Tse Tsung, the father of modern China.
Beijing is still the capital of China and is perhaps the second most powerful political city after Washington DC in the US. Going forward, it will be the city to watch as China slowly takes over the reins of power from the United States. You are lucky if you are in this generation as you will see the massive change of global leadership from US to China...be sure to visit the city before this happens.
For more information on accommodation in Beijing or tours of China, please contact one of our Travel Specialists at North South Travel today