Belvedere of Cheerful Melodies

Historic Building in Forbidden City & Dongcheng Central

This three-storey wooden opera house, built in 1776, was the Forbidden City’s largest theatre. Note the trap doors that allowed actors to make dramatic stage entrances. Within the same courtyard is the Hall for Viewing Opera, where the emperor and empress would enjoy the show; today it displays a fascinating collection of royal opera artefacts and costumes.