Cramming the oft-quoted ‘5,000 years of Chinese history’ under one roof is a tough task, but this remarkable museum on the eastern edge of Tiananmen Square does a fine job of it. With nearly 200,000sqm of exhibition space, it’s the third largest in the world and the permanent home to over one million priceless relics.
Reopened after extensive renovation in 2011, its five floors and 48 exhibition halls of artefacts take visitors on a journey through a civilisation, witnessing the artworks, implements and inventions that have shaped this nation and the world beyond, including ancient currency, scripts, bronzeware and extravagant imperial jewel collections.
Don’t miss The supposedly 1.7 million-year-old remains of the prehistoric Yuanmou Man.
Estimated time Two-to-three hours.
English provisions Translated captions are excellent, with audio guide available.