The country of China is home to thousands of years of history. Only since 1974, however, has it been open for modern tourists to explore. As the country modernizes and becomes friendlier to outside, China is quickly becoming a top tourist destination. Whether looking for a city vacation or a tour of the amazing countryside, China has something to offer everyone.

The Most Popular Attractions

There are a few places in China that everyone should see at least once. These places symbolize and speak of the great history of this country over the last two-thousand years.

The Forbidden City

The Most Popular Attractions in China - The Forbidden City

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Now known as the Palace Museum, this “city” is actually a palace that has been host to more than 24 of China’s emperors. It sits in the center of Beijing making it easy to access for those staying in the city. Construction of the palace was begun in 1406 and took approximately 14 years to complete. It holds more than 9900 rooms occupying nearly 900 buildings.

The Forbidden City is filled with a host of art and architecture that are a wonder to behold, but one must be prepared to make some time as exploring the entire palace can take a half-day to accomplish.

The Great Wall of China

The Most Popular Attractions in China - The great wall of China

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Perhaps one of the most well-known attractions, the Great Wall spans nearly 4000 miles across the hills and mountains, from the sea and deep inland. Its construction was begun more than 2000 years ago and added to over the years by various emperors seeking to protect themselves against the barbarian raids of the north. Every 1000 feet or so along the wall, a fortress rests, remnants of a more violent era of China’s history.

Many enthusiasts have taken to making a walking or biking tour of the Great Wall the focus of their vacation.

Qin’s Army – The Terra Cotta Warriors

The Most Popular Attractions in China - The Terra Cotta Warriors

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Known as the Museum of Emperor Qin Shi Huang’s Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses, this 2000 year old marvel was only recently discovered in 1974 and is still being excavated. It is located a short distance from of the city of Xi’an. This site features an excavated pit of more than 8000 warriors, 130 chariots, and 760 horses that were all crafted in the likeness of real soldiers from Qin Shi Huang’s army and placed there to guard his tomb.

In a country as vast as China, there are a countless number of things to see, far too many to list here. Anyone wishing to visit China should check with their tourism department or a travel agent to get a full scope of the variety of sights. Whether visiting China in luxury or looking to rough-it across the beautiful landscape of mountains, valleys, and rivers, China has it all.

Miles Walker the author of “The most popular attractions in China usually blogs in the Chinese media. He has lived and teach English in Beijing for the last 10 years.

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