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Beijing ATTRACTIONS See all

Tiananmen Square (Tiananmen Guangchang)

Tiananmen Square, or Tiananmen Guangchang, has always been not so much a square as a symbol. Mao built it to flaunt the epic scale of the Communist project. After the 1989 pro-democracy rallies that ended up in the massacre of protesters in the streets leading away from the square, it's impossible to stand in this vast space without thinking of its bleak history. And yet, it can be a bright, bustling sort of place, full of kids flying kites.

The scale really is extraordinary - this is the largest square in the world, able to fit 300,000 people (when Mao died, a million people crammed in here for a last farewell to their leader). Acres of paving stones stretch away in every direction. The square is bounded by the Museums of Chinese History and Chinese Revolution, the Great Hall of the People, and the Chairman Mao Mausoleum. 

In the center of the square, soaring 38 metres (125 feet) into the sky, is Monument to the People's Heroes, a granite obelisk erected in 1958. Other than checking out this monument and maybe taking a peek at the embalmed body of Chairman Mao, there's not a great deal to do here besides people-watch. Folk come from all over China to have their photo taken in this square, so there's a lot going on.

Practical Info

Take the underground rail to Tiananmen Dong, Tiananmen Xi (line 1) or Qianmen (line 2). There are also numerous buses that go to the square.  

Tours & Tickets

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Private Beijing Bike Tour at Night

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 13 Reviews

Location: Beijing, China
Duration: 3 hours

From USD $98.00
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Beijing Sightseeing Tour by Vintage Tram Bus

Location: Beijing, China
Duration: 8 hours

From USD $96.00

3-Night Best of Beijing Private Tour

Location: Beijing, China
Duration: 4 days

From USD $239.99

Small Group Beijing City Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 2 Reviews

Location: Beijing, China
Duration: 6-7 hours

From USD $77.00

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