Beijing Forbidden City Emperor ThroneThe Forbidden City (紫禁城) is a large precinct of red walls and yellow glazed roof tiles located in the heart of Beijing surrounded by a moat, and a 10m high red wall with watch towers on each corner. Measuring 961 meters in length and 753 meters in width, the Forbidden City is composed of more than 90 palace compounds with over 800 buildings & 9999.5 rooms (because only heaven could have 10,000 rooms).

The Forbidden City was the political and ritual center of China for over 500 years. After its completion in 1420, the Forbidden City was home to 24 emperors, their families and servants during the Ming (1368–1644) and the Qing (1644–1911) dynasties. The last occupant (who was also the last emperor of imperial China), Puyi (1906–67), was expelled in 1925 when the precinct was transformed into the Palace Museum. Although it is no longer an imperial precinct, it remains one of the most important cultural heritage sites and the most visited museum in the People’s Republic of China, with an average of 80,000 visitors every day.

The Forbidden City (translation is one of the Chinese terms for it – Zījĭncheng) was so named because commoners were forbidden to enter the city. Any commoner who saw the emperor was killed.  The Forbidden City is also referred to as 故宫 – Gugong.