We’ve compiled the best of the best in Beijing - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Old Summer Palace

    Haidian District | Ruins

    About the size of New York's Central Park, this ruin was once a grand collection of palaces—the emperor's summer retreat from the 15th century...Read More

  • 2. Qingdongling


    The most elaborate of the Qing tombs was built for the infamous Empress Dowager Cixi (1835–1908). Known for her failure to halt Western-imperialist...Read More

  • 3. Beihai Park

    Xicheng District | Ruins

    A white stupa is perched on a small island just north of the south gate of this park. Also at the south entrance is Round City, which contains...Read More

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  • 4. Ditan Park

    Dongcheng District | Ruins

    In "Temple of Earth Park," 105 acres of 16th-century green space, are the square altar where emperors once made sacrifices to the earth god...Read More

  • 5. Great Wall at Badaling


    Only one hour by car from downtown Beijing and located not far from the Ming Tombs, the Great Wall at Badaling is where visiting dignitaries...Read More

  • 6. Great Wall at Jinshanling


    The Great Wall at Jinshanling is perhaps the least tamed of the restored Great Wall sections near Beijing, as well as the least visited. Besides...Read More

  • 7. Great Wall at Juyongguan


    Juyongguan is a quick, easygoing alternative for those not willing to blow a whole day traveling to Mutianyu or Jinshanling, or brave the more...Read More

  • 8. Great Wall at Mutianyu


    Only slightly farther from downtown Beijing than Badaling, the Great Wall at Mutianyu is more spectacular and, despite the occasional annoyances...Read More

  • 9. Great Wall at Simatai


    This remote section of the Great Wall is ideal if you're seeking adventure. It's been partially restored, but it's nowhere near as commercial...Read More

  • 10. Temple of the Reclining Buddha

    Haidian District | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Although the temple was damaged during the Cultural Revolution and poorly renovated afterward, the Sleeping Buddha remains. Built in 627–629...Read More

  • 11. Zhaoling


    Allow ample time for a hike or drive northwest from Changling to the six fenced-off unrestored tombs, a short distance farther up the valley...Read More

  • 12. Zhoukoudian Peking Man Site


    This area of lime mines and craggy foothills, 48 km (30 miles) southwest of Beijing, ranks among the world's great paleontological sites (and...Read More

  • 13. Dongbianmen Watch Tower

    Chongwen District | Ruins

    This is Beijing's last remaining Ming watchtower. Be sure to check out the Red Gate Gallery inside, which shows works by well-known contemporary...Read More

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