and is Beijing's #1 tourist attraction. Entry is via the south gate only. Exit via north, west or east gates. Best to explore this huge complex on your own with a guide book, so that you can take your time and enjoy the smaller venues -- the ceramics and clock sections are worth the detours. Crowds are massive along the central axis, but the smaller side venues are almost empty. Take time to enjoy the two parks on either side of the main entry -- beautiful temples and no crowds for a fraction of the price (aka Workers cultural Palace to the east, and Zhongshan to the west).
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