There’s really not much to do here, but sit and stand and look around. We could easily have skipped it, but we just had to see the world’s largest public square. During the Cultural revolution, up to a million of people would pack here to listen to speeches. That’s how big the square is.

Modern China was born here, according to Lonely Planet. In 1919 students demonstrated in the square crying for less corrupt government, and boosted nationalist sentiment. Thus started the civil war, communists versus nationalists. The communists won in 1949 and Mao Zedong proclaimed the founding of the People’s Republic of China from atop the Gate of Heavenly Peace.

The square is also known for the protest in 1989, which ended in the death of many students.