Beijing’s hutongs offer a glimpse into Ming and Qing Dynasty Beijing. They’re also some of the city’s hippest neighborhoods, home to the trendiest shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants in the Chinese capital.
Jingshan Park (Jingshan Gongyuan)
No. 44 Jingshan E St, Xicheng, Beijing
Accessible for a small fee, Jingshan Park is a popular stop on Beijing city tours, which tend to visit after exploring the Forbidden City: Jingshan Park is just feet from the exit-only north gate. Most travelers arrive on foot and focus on the hill. Despite being only 141 feet (43 meters) high, it’s one of the highest natural viewpoints in downtown Beijing. It’s also possible to visit the park on a walking tour that takes in other city green spaces, such as Beihai Park, which is accessed via the west gate.
Things to Know Before You Go
Jingshan Park is a must for photographers, Instagrammers, and history buffs.
Visit Jingshan Park after the Forbidden City, if you aim to do both on the same day. It’s about a 1.5-mile (2.5-kilometer) walk to the main entrance in the south, but right across the road from the north gate.
Jingshan Park is generally wheelchair-accessible, but the hill is reached by steps.
How to Get There
Jingshan Park is located in the heart of downtown Beijing, just north of the Forbidden City. It’s over half a mile (1 kilometer) from the nearest subway station, Shichahai (line 8), but many travelers arrive after visiting the Forbidden City. That’s reached from Tiananmen West or Tiananmen East subway station on line 1.
When to Get There
Jingshan Park opens early in the morning and closes quite late in the evening. Early mornings are the best time to watch locals going about their tai chi, but the Forbidden City will not yet be open. If you’re visiting during April and May, the peonies and tulips are truly lovely but can draw real crowds on weekends.
The Story of Jingshan Park
Built using earth dug for the Forbidden City moat, Jingshan Park was once reserved for emperors—in fact, the last Ming emperor, Chongzhen, killed himself here in 1644. It’s been open to the public since 1928, although the pavilions and “palaces” that nestle among the trees and flowers trace their origins to imperial times.
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- Forbidden City (Palace Museum)
- Beihai Park (Beihai Gongyuan)
- Nine Dragon Screen at the Palace Museum
- Inner Court (Nei Ting)
- Imperial Garden of the Palace Museum
- Treasure Gallery
- Bell Tower (Zhonglou)
- National Art Museum of China (NAMOC)
- Meridian Gate (Wumen)
- St. Joseph's Church
- Prince Gong Mansion (Gong Wang Fu)
- Yandai Byway (Yandai Xiejie)
- Drum Tower (Gulou)
- Tiananmen (Gate of Heavenly Peace)