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Beijing,China - The Tour Continues

World  (tags: Beijing, China, capital city, sights, people, places, travel )

- 1712 days ago -
Being capital of the People's Republic of China, it is the nation's political, economic, cultural, educational and international trade and communication center.

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Kit B (276)
Wednesday September 11, 2013, 10:07 pm
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Being capital of the People's Republic of China, it is the nation's political, economic, cultural, educational and international trade and communication center. Located in northern China, close to the port city of Tianjin and partially surrounded by Hebei Province, it also serves as the most important transportation hub and port of entry.

As one of the six ancient cities in China, it has been the heart and soul of politics and society throughout its long history and consequently there is an unparalleled wealth of discovery to delight and intrigue travelers as they explore the city's ancient past and exciting modern development. Now it has become one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, with about 140 million Chinese tourists and 4.4 million international visitors in a year.

Beijing, Jing for short, is a metropolis in northern China and the capital of China. Lying 102km (70miles) west of Bo Hai Sea, it borders Hebei Province to the north, west, south, and for a small section in the east and Tianjin to the southeast. Beijing is a major transportation hub, with dozens of railways, roads and motorways passing through the city. It is also the destination of many international flights arriving in China. Beijing is regarded as the political, educational, and cultural center of China.

With a history of more than 3,000 years, Beijing has been an integral part of China's history. There is scarcely a major building that doesn't have at least some national historical significance. Being the capital of China for about 850 years, it is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China, offering China's most wonderful array of attractions. No other city in the nation attracts more travelers.

As the saying goes, one who fails to reach the Great Wall is not a true hero. Without visiting the Great Wall, no trip to Beijing or the country is complete. The Great Wall of China is a series of stone and earthen fortifications in northern China, built, rebuilt and maintained between the 5th century BC and the 16th century to protect the northern borders from Xiongnu attacks during various successive dynasties.

At the heart of Beijing is the Forbidden City, home to the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties, the largest palace complex of the nation and the world. The Forbidden City also hosts the Palace Museum with imperial collections of Chinese art. The Forbidden City is, by any measure, a must-see site in Beijing.

Siheyuan (Courtyard houses) and hutong (alleys) only grow in charm as they decrease in size. Courtyard houses are typical of houses of northern China, a full embodiment of the Chinese philosophy of "the unity of man and nature." Courtyards visitors can see today were mainly built from the Qing Dynasty to 1930s. Hutong is the most typical type of old lanes. More than 7,000 alleys are scattered throughout the city, each has a story to tell. Those narrow lanes twist through older sections and form an open-air museum where you can happily wander aimlessly for hours.

Other fun facts about Beijing, China:

Travel to Beijing, the capital of China and explore the cultural and historical sites. There is so much to see and do in this city so book Beijing Flights now!

1) Beijing, also known as ‘Peking’ means ‘the Northern Capital.’
This is evidence that Eastern Asian traditional values name things in an obvious and explicit way.

2) Beijing in the 2nd largest city in China. The largest city is Shanghai, in the south.

3) On an average day in Beijing air pollution is 5 times higher than the standard of safety set out by the World Trade Organisation.

4) Sharing is caring.
When you go to a restaurant in Beijing expect to order a variety of dishes that will be placed in the centre of the table, often on a Lazy Susan. This is because Chinese people see dining as a social pastime to enjoy with friends and family. Circular tables are often used as it allows you to communicate to every guest. Many of the dishes are shared between the entire group. This is great for tourists as it allows you to try a bit of everything.

5) Mr. Wang, Mrs. Wang…
According to the Beijing official census in 2006, ‘Wang’ is the most commonly used surname in the city. In fact, 10.35% of the Beijing population has this surname. Therefore do not just assume Mr. Wang and Mrs. Wang are married, or any relation at all.

6) Beijing has more than double the population of London.
The population of London is around 7 million, which sounds a lot until you realise that Beijing has an incredible 15 million residents. The city is also spread over two counties.

7) The Forbidden City has 1,000 rooms.
Located at the north of Tiannanmen Square, which is the largest square in the world, is the famous Forbidden City. It is entirely made of wood and has very intricate designs. The Forbidden City is enormous so allow a full day to explore.

8 ) Beijing; Bike capital of the world!
Beijing has always been famous for its high volume of bikes. There are separate lanes on the roads for them and they are an easy means of transport for Beijingers. However, as China develops some Chinese people have a higher income and now have the luxury of owning their own car. Therefore there are more cars in the city than ever before.

9) Car or bike?
Even though Beijingers desire cars they do not come without their risks. In China, approximately 600 people are killed each day by getting hit by a car. The majority of cases occur in cities, such as Beijing.

10) Beijing is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China
You will struggle to find another city in the world that has the amount of political and cultural background that Beijing has. This is why it is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China. It has been dominant in Chinese history for centuries and it is difficult to find an iconic building that does not have some national historical significance and wonderful stories hidden within it.

If you want to find out some more interesting facts about Beijiing why not go?


The world's longest wall and biggest ancient architecture, the Great Wall

The world's largest palace, the Forbidden City

Northern terminus of China's Grand Canal

Main Attractions

The Great Wall: Badaling, Mutianyu, Simatai, etc. sections

The Forbidden City, The Temple of Heaven, Tiananmen Square, The Summer Palace, The Ming Tombs, The Hutongs

Most famous food: Beijing duck

Most popular souvenirs and local products: Cloisonné, inside-painted snuff bottles, eight treasures inkpads, antiques, Chinese painting and calligraphy

Have some fun on your trip to Beijing, China!

Michela M (3964)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 8:07 am

20 years ago, I've been twice in Beijing, the 2nd one after only some months but I found a LOT of CHANGES!!! The 1st time I was IMPRESSED by the amount of bycicles going around, about 5 Millions in the city!! And they were with no lights at all. The 2nd time the city appeared more "modern", there were a lot of cars............

Michela M (3964)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 8:13 am

The Forbidden City was very interesting. The Great Wall (some Kilometers far from the Capital) was astonishing!!! On my 2nd time, I still remember Manuela, my eldest daughter, saying "I was soooooooo stupid!!! how could I say that I didn't want to come in this travel with you!!!!!!!

Kit B (276)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 10:07 am

Thanks Michela for sharing your story about China. I think it's very sad that the rest of the world is now trying to find room for bikes and China has mostly the room they had for bikes.

Nicole W (646)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 10:09 am
really enjoy traveling with you dear Kit!

Sheryl G (363)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 11:08 am
I think some changes into modernization that cause pollution will be finding many with regrets. China, if it had done the smart thing, would of learned from our mistakes and done things differently with their new found monies. But I suppose that would of made sense. Making sense seems to everywhere.

Thanks for the tour and Michela's first hand experience. Will be the closest I'll ever get to going there and I really have no desire at this point to travel far. Having to start off from a USA airport already dampens the mood for travel.

Bruno Moreira (61)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 11:11 am

pam w (139)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 12:32 pm
One of the few genuinely TERRIFYING travel experiences I've had concerned trying to cross a street in Beijing, looking up see (what appeared to be) ALL 15 MILLION of the Beijing population headed toward me on bicycles!

I quickly jumped into the center of a group of Chinese who grabbed my arm and pulled me along--you NEVER try to dodge the bicycles! You make them dodge YOU!

(I probably lost 9 years of my life in that moment!) And the Chinese people thought I was a HOOT!

When YOU go to China...take my advice....if you see something you like, BUY IT THEN! Where many countries have the same arts/crafts for sale everywhere, the Chinese tended to feature local crafts in local cities. This is good advice from someone who ASSUMED the charming little jade frogs would be available in the next city....only to find that nobody had anything like them.

Marija M (29)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 12:33 pm
thank you for this journey

Colleen L (3)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 3:27 pm
Fascinating. I too enjoyed the tour. Thanks Kit

Barbara K (60)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 3:46 pm
Wow, thanks, my friend, for another vacation via computer. They are doing quite well off our jobs and what we buy, aren't they? We are really making them rich and beautiful.

Mary Donnelly (47)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 4:22 pm
Thanks KIt--another great post.

Bryna Pizzo (139)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 5:35 pm
Thank you for a spectacular journey to China's Great Walll, and the Forbidden City, in Tiannanmen Square. The architecture and the art were breathtaking. The Chinese people are clearly amazing. It's such a pity that they have some very evil corporations. Of course, some of ours are just a evil.

JL A (281)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 5:51 pm
I loved some of the different kind of details in this profile Kit!

Craig Pittman (52)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 6:03 pm
Fabulous sights and and fascinating information. Thanks Kit. Thanks also to Pam and Michela for relating your experiences visiting there.

marie C (163)
Thursday September 12, 2013, 6:37 pm
Visited China twice years ago similar experience to Michela and Pam I remember everyone wearing grey in 1982 that was my first trip very different to what it is now One of my ex husbands had an office in Beijing and invested in Great Wall wine bringing it over to Chinatown in London UK.
So much has changed

Past Member (0)
Friday September 13, 2013, 4:43 am

. (0)
Friday September 13, 2013, 9:58 am
I'm not sure I would want to visit Beijing based on the experience a friend of mine had about two years ago.

Pat B (356)
Friday September 13, 2013, 10:55 am
Enjoyed the sights and sounds, and reading of our friends experiences in China too. Those steps to the Mutianyu
Great Wall look ominous, tho' I would like to try them. What a trip, thank you. ;-)

Past Member (0)
Saturday September 14, 2013, 1:30 am
Not on my list of places to visit but thoroughly enjoyed the tour! Thanks Kit

Melania Padilla (122)
Friday September 20, 2013, 12:59 pm
Call me an ignorant or close mind, but China is not on my travel list.... I don´t like them, and just to think of the animal abuses... No thanks. I know they all are not the same, but well. Thanks Kit!
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