Beijing Tourism

Review and Ratings (12)

Read 12 Beijing reviews with average rating of 3.8/5
Shikha Singh

Shikha Singhratingratingratingratingratingrating4.3/5

8 reviews

Beijing - An intense mixture of rich cultural heritage & modern upbeat lifestyle

A city that is always bustling with travellers and tourist keen on visiting the rich cultural heritage of China to the high-rise fast paced working city. The best time to visit China is in May-June-July. Places not to be missed :

1. Great Wall of China - One of the Wonders of the World, it is a must visit once in a lifetime. Travellers have to take a vehicle to the base of the mountain from where tourists are taken by cable cars uphill to the Great Wall. The view from the cable car is breathtaking with deep valleys below and the approaching Great Wall surrounding oneself. Once atop the Great Wall, traversable have to walk the Great Wall from one post to another where once upon a time their soldiers kept a strict vigil, taking in the view from the vast wall and feeling the dwindling history of the wall through your fingers. But remember to travel only as much as you can return back walking because it is a long walk. This is one place that cant be put into words, the experience of which can be beheld only by the eyes to believe it to be true.

2. Forbidden City - A historical city in a city. Forbidden city boasts of the rich legacy of the monastery and rule of the Kings of China. One has to visit the entire city walking and one can opt for a wireless walky which detects your location inside the forbidden city and explains the significance of every place you visit inside. Forbidden City shows the places where the Kings addressed the locals and their issues, where they offered their prayers, their extensive and blooming garden area and so on. The city is vast and it takes one 2-3 hours to visit most of the main parts of the city and experience a city held back in history. Remember to carry an umbrella. Outside the city one also gets an opportunity to don the Chinese silk gown and decorated hat and click pictures or make a video of oneself flying over the entire city in the same gown which is a must try.

3. Bird's Nest The massive Olympic stadium from the Olympic Games held in china which is architectural treat to the eyes. Built in the shape of a gigantic nest with an enormous Olympic torch on the outside, the Bird's Nest is one of the go to places of Beijing.

4. Temple of Heaven Another serene and mystically beautiful place in Beijing, hidden from the pollution and high-rises is the Temple of Heaven. Indeed one feels as though they are in Heaven nestled in the lush greenery and trees of all sorts lies the Temple of Heaven. Once again a proof to China's rich architectural love since ancient times, the temple has intricate designs and minute detailing in colours and sculpting. A treat to the eyes and peace to the mind, newly-wed Chinese find it an apt location for their wedding albums.

5. Acrobatic Show One thing surely not be missed is the Great China Acrobatic show that has limited tickets, this is one thing that leaves you asking for more. With acts that get your heart in your mouth and leave you gaping, it is an Acrobatic show never seen before anywhere. Death defying stunts and acts that are incomprehensible to the normal mind, the traditional get-ups of the characters and their delicate elegance is also something to watch out for. One can also get a CD once the show is over to make friends and relatives believe the unbelievable acts that you just experienced.

6. There are some great malls for shopping, also there is this street shopping kind of place where all the shops are located in one huge complex and one can find authentic and amazing Chinese dresses, show-pieces and what not. Immense bargaining takes place and it a lively and fun atmosphere. Then there are the commercial malls that are so huge that visiting one entire mall may take up your whole evening with live water-shows and music concerts being held. Along with malls, there are also few really beautiful gardens to visit where one can fill their lungs with as much pure air as one won't find in the entire city.

7. The Dragon Boat festival is held in June wherein people can experience rowing in boats under the evening city lights, taste some of the most authentic Chinese food, revel in the festivity and simply give oneself up for enjoying.

8. The Republic Square of Beijing is also a historical place where all their national parades take place and the traffic is duly cleared for the same. With picture of its founder and beautiful water fountains, it is a place bustling with visitors.

Beijing is one city that is so diverse in itself; one can find nature and history very safely cuddled up in the fast moving and workaholic lifestyle of the city. Though there is a lot of pollution and one may never get to experience a clear sky, the government takes care of that as much as possible by encouraging people to plant trees and use odd/even numbered cars alternatively. The people mostly speak only Chinese not even English but are very cordial and friendly and ready to assist.

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  • Beijing - An intense mixture of rich cultural heritage & modern upbeat lifestyle
  • Beijing - An intense mixture of rich cultural heritage & modern upbeat lifestyle
  • Beijing - An intense mixture of rich cultural heritage & modern upbeat lifestyle
  • Beijing - An intense mixture of rich cultural heritage & modern upbeat lifestyle
    +15

Girija Muralidharan

Girija Muralidharanratingratingratingratingrating5.0/5

53 reviews

Superb three days stay at Beijing, filled with history, culture and traditions

When we started organizing our trip to China our son Karthik came up with the suggestion that we take China Highlights as our travel agents as they are local and would do the job well. In fact Karthik was very happy with their service when he had taken his wife Srinithya on a holiday to China a few years back.

I would like to mention here that the idea of having China Highlights as our tour agents was very satisfying, they were very punctual, everywhere we had a 7 seater car with good English speaking guides. Because our trip was customized we had no time tensions. Sightseeing was relaxed. As per our requirement they put us up at 4 star hotels, breakfast and lunch was taken care of. Vegetarian food can be a challenge if you don't know how to express your needs in terms that Chinese people can relate to. We were able to manage despite this challenge.

The travel agents gave us a booklet which had practical and travel information one needs while exploring China. The problem is people in China do not speak or understand English. Only few hotel staff and travel guides know the language.

Our first stop was Beijing. This city has served as China's capital for more than 800 years. Hence this place has a number of cultural heritage sites in the world. The ancient legends, cultural heritage and modern developments mingle easily in this beautiful city.

Our Hotel, Beijing Hejing Fu Hotel was beautiful. It was a huge mansion gifted by the Emperor to his daughter on her wedding day, before it was converted to a hotel.

We wanted our tour to start from the second day of our arrival. The first day was free to explore the nearby places on our own.

Day 2 ) Our guide in Beijing, was Frank, he was a wonderful person. He said there was a subway near our hotel, he wrote in Eng and Chinese the route to take and said the Silk Street is a must see place. We followed the instruction and reached the place. There were numerous shops on all the 6 floors selling everything under the sky. We could shop for branded items as well as local items. We did a lot of walking on the first day itself. We were looking around for a place to have dinner, just then a man approached us and spoke to us in Hindi saying his name was Ganesh, he took us to his restaurant. He served us hot Punjabi Khana which was very welcome.

Day 3) our guide Frank, came on time to take us to the Great Wall of China. It was a 2. 5 hours drive from our hotel.

The Great Wall was built over many years. A great part of the wall has got destroyed, the wall which is in evidence today was built by the Ming Dynasty over a period of 200 years to protect and guard the Capital and the imperial Mausoleums. More than one million laborers have died in the process of building this wall. This wall has been maintained throughout the centuries and is an admired landmark in our world today.

There are several gates we can take. Normally tourists are taken through the Badaling section which is very crowded with shops lined throughout the way and heavy rush all through the year.

Here again Karthik suggested we take the Mutianyu section which is less crowded and the main attraction was the cable car to take us up the steep climb. After reaching the top we still had to climb quite a few steps to reach the wall. Once you are up after walking along the wall one enters the watch tower. There are numerous watch towers all through the long stretch of the wall. The beauty of this endless wall engulfs you; it is simply breathtaking, magnificent and awe-inspiring.

The wall snakes across the lush green hills and mountains. It is visible till your eyesight becomes a blur. We are told the pristine snow covered wall is a great beauty in winter. You stop to think and ponder about the numerous people who have died while getting this arduous task completed. This is the only man made structure which is visible from outer space. This wall was built to ward off enemies, today this Great Wall brings people here from every corner of the globe to witness and marvel the man made structure. I had a great time walking up and down and again up the watch tower till my hearts content. There was no time tension as I mentioned earlier.

To top up this exhilarating experience of having viewed the great wonder, there was a bonus foot massage done by experts for 80 minutes in the Liangzi Massage centre after our return to the city. The aching feet needed the soothing medicinal massage where your feet is soaked in warm water and massaged. It was heavenly.

Day 4 ) A day of being on your feet for hours at a stretch. Our first stop was the Forbidden City, this is the largest Imperial Palace in the world, and it has been home to 24 Emperors in the Ming and Qing dynasties. It was built in 1420, 70 years before Columbus discovered America and 144 years before the birth of William Shakespeare.

All around is a 52 meter wide moat with water most of the time.

Yellow being the Royal colour the glazed roof tiles are all in yellow. The Imperial Palace has 9999 and 1/2 rooms. They believed that Heaven had 10, 000 rooms.

It was named Forbidden City because apart from the Emperor and Empress, his numerous concubines and eunuchs who ran all the errands inside the palace, the common man was forbidden to enter the gate hence the name. It was instant execution if someone entered the city gate without permission.

The Empress entered the huge gate only once in her lifetime after her marriage. She never went out of the Palace in her lifetime. This tale sounds very similar to the Rajput queens in Rajasthan. The senior most queen and royal ladies never stepped out once they entered the royal palace after their marriage.

Most of the rooms are empty; the past glory is shown in Ipads by the guides. We are shown the screen that was between the throne of the Little Emperor and his mother who was called the Dragon Lady Our guide showed pictures which bring with great clarity the life of those historical figures.



Different structures house various treasures and royal articles and items. We went to the building which had numerous clocks from all over the world, another place where there was exquisite China ware. The Royal Golden Throne which is cordoned on all four sides looks desolate.

It was a 5 hour walking tour known as the Heritage Walk. There were lots of local Chinese tourists with their families.

Next stop was the Tiananmen Square it means ( Gate of Heavenly Peace). The square is the fourth largest city square in the world. It has great significance as it was the site of several important events in Chinese history. The square contains the monument to the heroes of the revolution. The great hall of people, the National Museum of China, and Chairman Mao Zedong memorial hall where the Mao's embalmed body is kept.

While standing at the centre of the square admiring all the buildings and the well manicured lawns on the side our thoughts rush back to the June 4th 1989 democracy Movement. The hard-line leaders ordered the military to enforce martial law. The massacre which took place resulting in bloodshed of students and civilians was unprecedented in the history of Beijing. This city has rich tradition of popular protests in this famous square.

The legs were aching after the long heritage walk hence we just looked around admiring the place and thinking of the famous protest of 89 and listening with rapt attention to all that the guide was telling us.

Next we drove to the Hutong district. Hutong is a maze of historic alleyways with single storey traditional courtyard style houses which are fast disappearing these days. We got into a gaily decorated rickshaw and took a ride through the narrow alleys. We were surprised to see garbage, street dogs and a whole lot of rubbish heaped in every nook and corner. Modernity had not touched this part of the city.

We visited a local family to learn about the different thresholds of the courtyards. Men and women were separated by these courtyards in a family. The lady of the house we visited was very friendly and showed us an album where she has posed with famous personalities who have visited her house. The house was quite untidy and dusty but she was not bothered about it.

While we were riding in the rickshaw after visiting the local house it started raining heavily, we had to cut short our ride and hop into the car to reach our hotel.

It was a day of long walks, head loaded with history, culture and traditions of this mystifying city.

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  • Superb three days stay at Beijing, filled with history, culture and traditions
  • Superb three days stay at Beijing, filled with history, culture and traditions
  • Superb three days stay at Beijing, filled with history, culture and traditions
  • Superb three days stay at Beijing, filled with history, culture and traditions
    +1

I am heading to Beijing

Getting to Beijing

visa

Visa: Prior application

View Visa requirement
Transit

Transit time: 9hrs from major cities

Cost ₹18,000 per person

Beijing Overview

Beijing is the capital of China and it is recognised as one of the oldest and greatest cities of the world. In Chinese, ‘Beijing’ means ‘Northern Capital’.  In the year 1421, Emperor Yongle shifted the capital from Nanjing to Beiping and renamed it Beijing. Famed emperors such as Shi Huang Ti and Kublai Khan are associated with the history of this city.

The celebrated Ming and Qing dynasties ruled from Beijing. The city saw the rise and fall of many regimes and governments since it was founded. Beijing is the political, cultural and educational capital of the People’s Republic of China.

Beijing is located at the northernmost end of the North China Plain in the time zone of East Eight (GMT 8). All major international airlines include Beijing in their destinations. There are mountains running from the north of the city through to the West to shield it from the effects of arid climate.

It stands 45 metres above sea-level and the climate is generally humid. Five rivers flow through the city and the Yongding is the largest. The city and its suburbs measure more than 16,000 sq, and about two-thirds of the city is mountainous. The sixteen districts and two counties are well-connected by four ring roads that coil the city and by a major median road connecting the east-end of Beijing with the west. 

The three major styles of architecture that dominate the city are imperial, post-war and modern. The best time to visit the city is from September to November. It is home to around 22 million people.  Beijing is a highly industrialised city with hundreds of factories, banks and corporations apart from 26 offices of some of the world Fortune 500 companies.

Beijing generates an annual GDP of about USD 175 billion. The real estate and automobile sectors have seen a steady growth in the last decade. The Central Business District and the Wangfujing, also known as the ‘Silicon Valley of China’ has together played a major role in creating new wealth for the city and the nation.
The meteoric rise of China in the last decade has been attributed to the numerous new companies set up in Beijing.

The government recently took up measures to counter the growing menace of air pollution in the city by relocating industries, triggering artificial rainfall to clear smog, converting some areas of the city into no-vehicle zones and designating certain other areas as closed for traffic on weekends.