Formerly romanized as Peking, from the Chinese characters 北 for north and 京 for capital, means leterallly the Northern Capital. This official English spelling is based on the pinyin romanization of the two caracters as they are pronounced in Standard Mandarin. Located in north, the metropolis is the capital of China. With a population of more than 21 million, it has an urban area of more than 1500 km2. A rectangle of 50 by 30 kilometers. It has been the capital of the last three feudal dynasties. It is a city full of attractions.