Today we returned to cultural visits with trips to Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Temple of Heaven. Tiananmen Square is the center of the city of Beijing and is home to the resting place of Chairman Mao. After a quick walk through the square, we made our way to the Forbidden City, home to the emperors of China from the years 1420 to the early 1900’s. The city itself was much larger than I originally expected and contained many wide open areas for the emperors. After a walk through the city and many pictures, we made our way to lunch where we had more delicious food. From lunch, we went to a very old area of the city of Beijing where we took rickshaws to a house where the man who lived there explained what the city was like when he was much younger. He even told us that his father had lived in this house for 99 years and is still alive and living there today. Next, we took the rickshaws back to the bus and traveled to the Temple of Heaven. The Chinese emperors used to go to the Temple of Heaven to pray for prosperity. The temple area was beautiful and contained many peaceful areas filled with flowers and shade. After seeing the temple itself, we went to one of the open courtyard areas in the shade where we got a Tai Chi lesson as a group. This was our last stop of a day filled with many incredible historical and cultural activates. Off to Xi’an tomorrow!