Tian’anmen Square (天安门广场) is no doubt one of the most famous and popular landmarks in Beijing and the entire China as well.
I’m not repeating the entire history of the Tian’anmen Square here but I’d suggest that you go google and read up about the historical importance of this place if you don’t already know why.
The plaza is one of the largest plazas in the world and can easily fit 600,000 people within the area.
Coming from Singapore, one of the smallest countries in the world in terms of land mass size, Tian’anmen Square is a huge contrast from everything that I was used to. This was the very first tourist attraction we visited on the tour so it was so overwhelming to hear that we need walk straight across the square to reach the Forbidden City (紫禁城/故宫).
According to what I remembered from what our tour guide said, before the Tian’anmen Square was build, there was a whole lot of government official housing there (during the Ming Dyanasty (? AD 1368 – 1644)). The government official housing was abandoned and then later demolished to build Tian’anmen Square some time during the Qing Dynasty (AD 1644 – 1911).
Maybe it is just me but I think that the legacy and history behind Tian’anmen Square is extremely romantic (in the literary sense, please check the dictionary for the exact definition).
Entry to Tian’anmen Square is free but your bags will be subjected to an x-ray scan before you can enter the place. Also, you cannot enter the square after 8.00 pm so plan accordingly if you are planning a free & easy visit Tian’anmen Square.
Also, I’d recommend going with a local guide who will share all the rich history of Tian’anmen Square with you when you are there. It isn’t a place which is so picturesque you’d want to take a gazillion photos but Tian’anmen Square is a place where you need to hear the history to be fascinated by it.