Begin your tour of the city at Beijing's heart: Tiananmen Square. Here you can experience one of the most affronting contradictions of China today. Face north, and you'll see the beautiful expanses of the Forbidden City (officially called the Palace Museum), adorned with the famous portrait of Mao Zedong. Turn south, and the might of modern China will wow you with the colossal Tiananmen Square. After sufficiently soaking it all in, wander inside the Palace Museum to experience the Forbidden City, and imagine what life was like for emperors centuries ago.