We visited all around Beijing, walking, tour buses, or the Tuk Tuk. We have been there four times.
*The Beijing Zoo. What a beautiful place to visit and all the panda bears.
*Beijing Zoo is home to around 450 different species and has a population of some 5,000 animals. Some of the most popular attractions among visitors are the wild rare animals of China itself, such as the giant pandas, golden monkeys, milu deer, and northeast tigers. However, the collection is far from restricted to those species found only in China; the polar bears, American bison, zebras, kangaroos, giraffes, and elephants draw large crowds.
*The silk factory. Want beautiful and good silk, I suggest visiting a factory. The best ones are to show you from the cocoon to the finishing process.
*You can see a demo of how silk is turned into clothes/duvets etc. The quality of the silk is beautiful.
*We learn how to make tea the right way.
*Visit and shop, shop, shop
**I always buy a book to find more about their history.

Tiananmen Square

It was a long walk from our hotel to Tiananmen Square, but we discover all kinds of stores and cute tea shops on our way there. I always buy different blends of teas, and I learn how to serve tea the right way.
Early at the Square and the line was crazy to visit the museum. The army clean monument with a toothbrush, I took a picture fast because you are not supposed to see them do that!
The underground stair goes to the other side for visiting the Forbidden City. It is considered a divine place, long time ago it was forbidden to ordinary people and that is why the Forbidden City is so named.
The square is the world’s largest public space and was initially the ‘front door’ of the Forbidden City.
The main colors of the Forbidden City are yellow and red. The walls, pillars, doors, and windows were mostly painted in red, which is regarded as a symbol of good fortune, and happiness in Chinese culture.
You can walk all day and you can miss some little corners, but it is well worth the time as we see a lot of China’s history. This City has over 900 different rooms, most of which you can see through the glass window. Beyond the Wu Gate lies a large courtyard, through which the Golden River runs in a bow-shaped arc. The river is crossed by five parallel white marble bridges, which lead to the Gate of Supreme Harmony
The story about this place is interesting.


Wall Of China

The Great Wall of China is a series of fortifications that were built across the historical northern borders of ancient Chinese states and Imperial China as protection against various nomadic groups from the Eurasian Steppe.
We visit the wall a few times over the years using a different entrance each time. The view is wow.
Sad that lots of people died building this amazing wall.

Lama Temple

The Yonghe Temple is a temple and monastery of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism. The building and artwork of the temple is a combination of Han Chinese and Tibetan styles.
You will see many monks and worshippers burning incense to Buddha and get to walk in and through several buildings.

You can see the old building to the new modern one. Culture chock.

Temple of Heaven

The Temple of Heaven is an imperial complex of religious buildings situated in the southeastern part of central Beijing. The complex was visited by the Emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties for annual ceremonies of prayer to Heaven for a good harvest.

The Temple of Heaven was entered into the world cultural heritage list in 1998.

Ming tombs

The Ming tombs are a collection of mausoleums built by the emperors of the Ming dynasty of China. The first Ming emperor’s tomb is located near his capital Nanjing. However, the majority of the Ming tombs are located in a cluster near Beijing and collectively known as the Thirteen Tombs of the Ming dynasty. 

The Ming Tombs are also known as the ‘Thirteen Tombs’. It is where 13 out of the 16 emperors of the Ming Dynasty were buried, together with their wives and concubines.

The Ming Tombs were listed by UNESCO as World Cultural Heritage in 2003. The tombs’ location and structure are classic representations of Chinese Fengshui theory.

Summer Palace

We took another tour to visit The summer palace and garden.  The day was very hazy and hot.

Kunming Lake is the central lake on the grounds of the Summer Palace in Beijing, China. Together with the Longevity Hill, Kunming Lake forms the key landscape features of the Summer Palace gardens.

The Summer Palace is said to be the best-preserved imperial garden in the world, and the largest of its kind still in existence in China. It is only a short drive of 15 km (10 miles) from central Beijing, but it seems like another world. There’s so much to see and enjoy.

The Summer Palace was used as a summer retreat by the Chinese royal family. During the hot Beijing summers, the imperial family preferred the beautiful gardens and airy pavilions of the Summer Palace to the walled-in Forbidden City

The long corridor is the path beside the lake that leads you under shady trees, or along the roofed colonnade known as the Long Corridor, with its magnificently painted ceilings. Bridges, boats, willows, lotus flowers, and other attractive landscaping make this a pleasant place to soak up the atmosphere and lovely views.

Around Town

Good To Know

*Language: Chinese, but lots of people speak English.

*Currency: China’s currency is the Renminbi (RMB) or the yuan, I use my debit card at the bank machine.

*Credit Cards and ATMs: You won’t have any problems finding ATMs around Beijing unless you go really off the beaten track.*Plugs:

In China there are three associated plug types, types A, C, and I. Plug type A is the plug that has two flat parallel pins, plug type C is the plug that has two round pins, and plug type I is the plug that has three flat pins in a triangular pattern. China operates on a 220V supply voltage and 50Hz.

*Safety: I never felt unsafe there. Now it is another question!! I have a TRAVELON BAG, safety lock, anti-Theft Bag, RFID.

**Forbidden City ticket price depends on the season. From November to March (Low season) Forbidden City tickets cost 40 Yuan ($6). From April to October (High season) Forbidden City tickets cost 60 Yuan ($9).

**We always choose our hotel in the middle of everything, restaurants, shopping, and taxis.

**For most of the places we visit, we book a tour from the hotel or walk to places close by.

***And DON’T FORGET…Social media are blocked in China.

At the bottom of the Wall of China

Things to remember

Tour Bus

**Before you choose your tour bus make sure that it is what you want. Most buses will stop for lunch and after at a jade store, a silk factory, or a tea room. The driver is making money from all the shops you visit if you buy from them. I love visiting them because you can see how jade statues are made and learn the difference between fake and real, same for the pearl/silk. The tea room is another fun experience.

I like to go there at least one time. Also, you are not pressured to buy on these tours.

**Usually, the tour is for a small group.

**Buffet lunches are very good.


Avoiding Fakes

**Telling the difference between imitation pearls and the real ones is quite simple—use the tooth test. When you run a real pearl, natural or cultured, across your teeth, the pearl will feel slightly gritty. The fake one will feel smooth and slippery.

If you’re still having trouble deciding whether it’s real, ask the vendor to scrape the pearl with a knife. A white powder will result in scraping a real pearl.

**Real jade has a beautiful soft clinking sound, unlike the heavier chime of glass or the hollow sound of plastic.

Jade is dense and is often heavier than other gemstones of the same size. This test is more effective if you have a piece of genuine jade on hand.

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