Tiananmen Square has a controversial history, most recently as the site of the 1989 protests in which many demonstrators were killed by the Chinese government. It is also where Mao Zedong declared a People's Republic of China under Communism in 1949 and where rallies took place during the Cultural Revolution.
The northern boundary of the square is Tiananmen Gate, where three bridges arch over a moat to a main road. To the west is the Great Hall of the People, to the east is the National Museum of China, and to the south is the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall, where Mao's body is preserved under a glass case for public viewing. In the center of the Square is the Monument to the People's Heroes, a structure built to honor those who died in various revolutions for China. Flanked by important buildings at its four cardinal points, Tiananmen Square has strong cultural and spiritual resonance.
Photo Credit: (clockwise from the top) Martin Valent, Jarno Gonzalez Zarraonandia, and Sherry Huang