I researched confusedly early (Pottery first, Mysticism to try for the Oracle, Writing, then Philosophy to try to trade for Map Making, but then had to research Map Making myself), and didn't get Iron Working or Horseback Riding for quite a while. So I went to war against Russia in 210 BC with a big stack of archers. Captured all their cities before Moscow, but then they got pikemen to defend it. Settled for peace and revolted to Republic in 350 AD.
Built the Forbidden Palace in the center of the arc of the continent, in 700 AD.
In 1010 AD, pulled a massive Leonardo-fueled Horsemen-to-Cavalry upgrade, and steamrolled (horserolled?) Japan. Conquered all but three of their cities on their continent before stopping due to war weariness, and got a GL to move the Palace to the center of that continent.
Golden Age triggered by building Magellan's (previously had Bach's) in 1030 AD.
Entered Industrial Age in 1140, and went full blast on tech the rest of the way. Researched to tanks, and wiped Russia off my continent in 1520 AD. That triggered a Russian MPP with China; I took a couple insignificant island Chinese cities before making peace.
Wonders: Got Hanging Gardens, Leonardo's, Smith's, and Magellan's thanks to LONG prebuilds; got Bach's by killing the cascade and having the tech before anyone else, and got all wonders (except Hoover) in the industrial age and later easily. Lost Shakespeare's by ONE TURN, getting Newton's instead (why couldn't the Chinese have built that instead?) Magellan's triggered the Golden Age in 1030 AD.
Started building a spaceship, and let me take you to that story, with the first dramatic Modern Age I've ever had...