The city of Beijing has a history of over 800 years, dating back to 1153 AD the Jin Dynasty (1115-1234) which moved its capital from Shangjing to Beijing, called Zhongdu. The histoy of Beijing as a capital city went through four dynasties:
1.Beijing as capital city called” Shangdu” during Jin Dynasty (1115-1234)
2.Beijing as capital city called “Dadu” in Yuan Dynasty (1271 – 1368)
3.Beijing as capital city called ”Beijing” in Ming Dynasty (1368 – 1644)
4.Beijing as capital city in Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)
At present, the buildings in Beijing mainly fall into the following four categories
1) The remaining imperial buildings in Ming and Qing Dynasties) (1368-1911), like Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, Summer Palace…
2) Hutongs and Siheyuan (courtyards), the traditional residential buildings starting the Ming and Qing Dynasties (1638-1911)
3) Charactorless and low quality residential and office buildings after 1949
4) Trendy and weird buildings in the 21th century
Walking on the streets in Beijing, the street buildings that catch your eyes in great number are those mediocre buildings after 1949, interrupted by the some ultra-modern buildings designed and built in the 21th century. If you stick around in the some back streets, you will find the traditional vernacular buildings in Beijing – Hutong and courtyards.
For a first-time foreign visitor in Beijing, Beijing Tour will cover the visits to the imperial places like Forbiden City, Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace. Most of foreign tourists will choose a Beijing Hutong Tour to learn more about the traditional residential buildings. Many of them would also like to have a look at the trendy buildings like Bird’s Nest, CCTV Builiding, the National Center of Performing Arts and many more…, a kind of Beijing Modern City.
As a city, London has a much longer history, dating back to AD 43 when Roman legions under the leadership of Emperor Claudius who came north to Britannia and chose the site of London as their new provincial capital. By AD200 a thick wall encircled the city of London.
The history of London can be divided into eight periods:
1. The Romans & the Anglo-Saxons (43-1066)
2. The Normans (1066-1154)
3. The Middle Ages (1154-1485)
4. The Tudors (1485-1603)
5. The Stuarts (1603-1714)
6. The Gorgians (1714-1837)
7. The Victorians (1837-1910)
8. The House of Windsor(1837-1910)
In the course of the city contruction and development, the city of London went through wars and fire many times. The Great Fire of London, the worse of several conflagrations in London, raged for four days in 1666, destorying more than three-quarters of the buildings in the city. In 1940-41, the Blitze started in London with 57 consecutive nights of bombing, causing extensive damage and loss of life.
Wandering along the main streets in Londion, you will feel as if you were in a gigantic museum of Romanesque and Gothic buildings. Most of the buildings were built during the Gorgians (1714-1837) and the Victorians (1837-1910). For the city exterior, you don’t sense much change in the urban construction in the past 200-300 years with very few modern buildings!
Look at the photos of London street buildings below:
Tip: Hassle-free Beijing Guided Tours
If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours, here are some options for Beijing guided tours: