Insights: Museums in Beijing

Whether you’re interested in delving deep into China’s history, art and culture, or have an appreciation for watermelons, Beijing has a museum for just about anything.

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The Palace Museum (Forbidden City/故宫博物馆), Photo: Lonely Planet

N.B. Most museums have free admission. As with all attractions, don’t forget to bring your student ID and passport, and be mindful of opening times. It is not uncommon for many attractions to be closed on Mondays.

TOP PICKS AT A GLANCE

Table no. 2

Featured Museums

1. National Museum of China 中国家博物馆

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Photo: National Museum of China

With almost 200 000 square metres of floor space, 49 galleries and over a million exhibits, culture fiends will have a blast at one of the world’s largest museums. The result of merging the Museum of Chinese History and the Museum of the Chinese Revolution, this comprehensive museum covers Chinese history, arts and culture.

 2. Capital Museum 首都博物馆

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This five-storeyed museum focuses on Beijing history, art and culture, and is a must-see for anyone looking to deepen their understanding of Beijing. This museum peeks into the everyday life for the Chinese throughout history and interactive models and replicas are used to give visitors a sense of what life was like. Permanent exhibits also include an extensive collection of ancient bronze, jade, and ceramics art.

3. Military Museum of the Chinese People’s Revolution 中国人民革命军事博物馆

This museum showcases military equipment from the history of the People’s Liberation Army up to and including modern-day machinery, as well as displaying military equipment from the US, Korea and the USSR. Architecturally magnificent, visitors don’t even have to go inside before they’re wowed. Luckily, its grandeur is matched indoors with large halls with extensive collections of artillery, planes, tanks, cars, heavy weaponry and more.

4. Beijing Police Museum 北京警察博物馆

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Beijing Police Museum, Photo: TripAdvisor

This museum covers the history of Beijing policing from the end of the Qing Dynasty to the present day. With four storeys of life-sized immersive scenes, and interactive exhibits, and extensive galleries, it offers an insight into the life, structure, significance, and history of this integral profession.

Author: Janet S. (UNSW Australia)

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