And for Wednesday, the Forbidden City in Beijing.
For nearly 500 years, the Forbidden City was the home to emperors from the Ming and Qing dynasties .. a sprawling complex of nearly a thousand buildings, and covering 72 hectares of central Beijing built over a period of just 14 years, from 1406.
Today it is a World Heritage site which attracts 14 MILLION people each year – as many as 120,000 in a single day – a far cry from the time when people were forbidden to enter, except with the express permission of the Emperor (hence the name)
There are a series of imposing gates and towers, and bridges and halls – including today’s image, the Hall of Supreme Harmony.
It lies at the heart of the Forbidden City, which itself lies at the heard of the Imperial City .. again, at the centre of the Inner City of Beijing.
Many of the bricks of the courtyard have been worn to sand and replaced over the past 600 years, and there are still giant bronze urns scattered around to fight fires because this complex is largely made of timber .. it is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.
In fact, the hall of Supreme Harmony is one of the buildings destroyed by fire on multiple occasions … first built in 1406, it was last rebuilt in 1695 after multiple fires.
It features dragon motifs all around, and inside the hall, and is a truly imposing site – arguably the grandest building to remain from Imperial times.