A few days ago, I took some friends from Ireland and a relative from Kenya for a little site-seeing in Beijing. We visited the Forbidden City which was the Chinese imperial palace and the largest ancient palatial structure in the world. For almost five centuries, it served as the home of the emperor as well as his household.
For those of you who haven’t been there, it’s truly hard to describe except to say that it is massive. It consists of 90 palaces and courtyards, 980 buildings and 8,704 rooms! What struck me more than the large expanse of space with so many buildings was the names that were given to each of them – ‘Gate of Supreme Harmony’, ‘Hall of Earthly Tranquility’, Gate of Heavenly Purity’, ‘Palace of Tranquil Longevity’. I was delighted to see how peaceful and harmonious the names are and wondered how those names were chosen for the buildings.
Here are some photos I took of our visit. Most of the shots are close-ups of details that caught my eye like door-knobs of large red doors and beautifully painted roof-tops with colors of gold, blue, green and red. Enjoy!