Here is another shot of the Forbidden City, with the large city of Beijing all aound us.
Here is Mike, and our tour guide, Xing Xing. She is a really nice lady from the outer provinces, who hopes one day to open up her own tour agency. She speaks really good english, and became a good friend.
Here is another palace building.
Another one of the many thrones used for only certain ceremonies and occasions. Each throne building, room and throne has a different theme, color and style.
There were large courtyards everywhere. Not as many trees in the outer grounds, or shade for that matter.
There is a large moat surrounding this enormous city complex. The excavation materials were used to make a large hill, used for city defense. You can see this hill behind Xing Xing and Mike in the background. It is covered with trees, and is about 400 feet high.
There were shops and snack areas everywhere. There were also crews working on rebuilding and fixing the city in many locations.
Another imperial throne.
In the very inner courtyard areas closer to the man-made hill, there was a few acres of lush gardens and trees. Here are some shots of that.
Lots of cool resting places, small man made stone cliffs with waterfalls, and special trees. Servants used to have to carry water up the cliffs and pour the water down to make the waterfalls work. That is alot of work!