Beijing's Imperial Grandeur

Updated 1805 GMT (0205 HKT) June 26, 2016
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Though it is growing and changing all the time, Beijing's imperial history is still visible today. Sacrifices were made at the Temple of Heaven -- now a UNESCO World Heritage Site -- for almost 500 years, until the practice was banned at the beginning of the 20th century. AFP/Getty Images
One of the city's most popular tourist destinations is the awe-inspiring Forbidden City, an opulent gilded cage that was once the seat of power for the Ming and Qing dynasties. Getty Images
The Juanqin Studio, one of the most luxurious buildings in the Forbidden City, was built for Qing Emperor Qianlong (1711-1799). Getty Images
The summer residence for the imperial court was the Summer Palace, which features a lake, park, temples and palaces. AFP/Getty Images
Visitors are seen walking through the ruins of Haiyan Hall in the old imperial Summer Palace on the outskirts of Beijing. AFP/Getty Images
A statue at the Confucius Temple in Beijing, named for the Chinese philosopher Confucius. AFP/Getty Images
Dating as far back as the days of Khubilai Khan, Beijing's Ancient Observatory (pictured here in an 18th-century engraving) still stands and features astronomical instruments on its roof. Getty Images