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Top Things to Do in Beijing

Last updated by vincentg1991 at 2016/4/5; Destinations: Beijing

Beijing is the capital city of People’s Republic of China, the municipality directly under the central government and the central city of China. Beijing is one of the “Eight Ancient Capital Cities” in China, having a history of 3,000 years, a fame of famous historic and cultural city of more than 860 years. With the most heritage sites in the world, it owns 6 world heritage sites and many historical monuments and the humanity landscapes.

Beijing is a city combining tradition and modernism. Emperor city ruins mainly concentrate on the central area of the whole city. Along the axle wire locates the Temple of Heaven, the Forbidden City, Qianmen Street. The western suburbs combine culture and Buddhism relics. The historic Tsinghua University and the Beijing University, the Fragrant Hill and varieties of old temple can satisfy the curiosity of visitors to explore the history of Beijing.

The modern Beijing features modern elements, such as skyscrapers, the fast pace of urban life and the color light in the night of modern city. CBD (refers to the Central Business District) is located on the East Third Ring Road. A forest of tall buildings and the surge of traffic makes people exclaiming over the fast development of science. Beijing boasts hostship of the 29th Olympic Games and the famous buildings—Bird Nest and the Water Cube becomes the new landmark.

Top 10 Things to Do in Beijing

No. 1 Tian'anmen Square

Tian’anmen Square is located in the heartland of Beijing and also is the largest city central square in the world. Visitors may be confounded with the question what the landmark of Beijing is. Because there are many scenic spots can represent the important position of Beijing. But there is no doubt that Tian’anmen Square is on the top place of the answer. It was the place where numerous important political and historical events took place and the witness of the decline to rise of China.

Tiananmen Square

 Tiananmen Square is used to be a royal court square outside the Forbidden City of the rule period of Ming and Qing Dynasties Empire. There were walls on the east, west and south to make the palace a forbidden place to the common people.

Nowadays, the Tian’anmen Square is surrounded by Tiananmen on its north, the Great Hall of the People on its west, the meeting place of national people's congress of the People's Republic of China, the National Museum of China on the east of Tiananmen Square and the Monument to the People's Heroes and Chairman Mao's Mausoleum on the south. 
Location: West Changan Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing 100006, China
Admission Fee:
Tiananmen Square: Free
Tiananmen: 15Yuan/Person
The Great Hall of the People: 15Yuan/Person
Chairman Mao's Mausoleum: Free
The National Museum of China: 15Yuan/Person
Opening Hours: All day long
How to get there: Take No.1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 20, 52, 57, 22, 54, 120, 802, special No.1 bus and get off at Zhongshan Park stop or Tian’anmen stop.

No.2 Forbidden City

The Forbidden City, also called the Palace Museum, is located on the central of the axle wire of Beijing. It is the palace of Ming and Qing Dynasty, covering an area of 0.72 million square meters. Being one of the landmarks of Beijing, it has the largest scale and the palace type building which is preserved the best in the world. It is no doubt a unparalleled masterpiece of ancient building.

Forbidden City

The Forbidden City consists of Imperial Palace, Imperial Garden, Taihe Gate, Taihe Hall, Zhonghe Hall and Baohe Hall. It has precious collection of the culture relics, one of which is the inscriptions on bones or tortoise shells of the Shang Dynasty. Visitors also can appreciate the paintings, ceramics, bronze ware and many other ancient art treasures. It has the most abundant cultural relic’s collection among the museum in China.
Location: No.4 Jingshanqian Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing 100009, China 
Admission Fee: 60Yuan/Person
Opening Hours: 8:30 to 17:00
How to get there: Take No. 1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 20, 52, 57, 22, 54, 120, 802, special No.1 bus and get off at Zhongshan Phongshan Park stop or Tian Am Men stop. 

No. 3 Hutong Tour in Beijing

Have you ever walked in a narrow street like a labyrinth? Do you have an experience of taking a tricycle in such a street? Here in Beijing Hutong can satisfied all the experience visitors have ever had.

Hutong

Beijing Hutong is more a place where common people live in Beijing and the important stage of development of the history and culture of Beijing than the vein and the transportation of the city. It recorded the transition of the history, like a museum show varieties of traditional culture.

Strolling in the Hutong, visitors can see scenic spots and historic sites everywhere. The bricks and pieces of tile have a history of hundreds years. Visitors can know about the lives of the people in Beijing from Hutong, including the way they lead their lives and the neighborhood relationships.
Location:
Shichahai Area: north of Beihai Park
Dazhalan Area: south of Tiananmen Square
Admission Fee:
Rickshaw: 50 to 100Yuan/Person

No.4 Great Wall at Mutianyu Section

There spreads a saying, “One who hasn’t climbed the Great Wall is not a real man”. The Great Wall at Muyuguan Section was constructed under the supervision of Zhu Yuanzhang in 1368AD. It is the essence of the Great Wall of Ming Dynasty. Mutuanyu Section connects the Gubeikou section to the east and the Juyongguan section to the west and is the important section of the military since ancient time.

Mutianyu Great Wall

In Mutianyu section, there are three scenic spots. The first one is Zhengguantai Platform. It was used for collecting the grain and station troops. The second one is the Great Watchtower. It is located on the commanding height of the east of Mutianyu Pass. Stand on the watchtower, visitors will have a panoramic view of the surroundings.
Location: Mutianyu Road, Huairou District, Beijing, China
Admission Fee: 35Yuan/Person
Opening Hours: 07:30 to 17:30 
How to get there: Take Bus no 916 

No.5 Temple of Heaven

The Temple of Heaven is located in the south of Beijing and east side of Yongding Gate of East City Section. It covers an area of 2.73 million square meters. The construction of the Temple of Heaven can be dating back from Ming Yongle 18 years (1420AD). When it came to the Qianlong of Qing Dynasty, the Temple of Heaven was rebuild and reconstruction.

Temple of Heaven Beijing China

The Temple of Heaven is the biggest building group for sacrifice to the heaven. It is divided into two parts, the Inner Temple and the Outer Temple. The Hall of Abstinence is located in the Inner Temple, which is the residence of the emperor to abstain before fete. The main building group in the Inner Tower is the famous places of interest, such as Echo Wall, Triple Echo Stones, Seven Star Stone and so on.
Location: Tiantan Road, Dongcheng District, Beijing 100050, China
Admission Fee: 35Yuan/Person
Opening Hours: 6:00 to 21:00 
How to get there: Take 6, 20, 39 Buses.

No. 6 Summer Palace

The Summer Palace is the ancient royal gardens in Beijing. The predecessor of the Summer Palace is the Qingyi Garden. It is located in the west suburb in Beijing and is about 15 kilometers from the urban area, neighboring the Yuanmingyuan Imperial Garden. It used Hangzhou West Lake as a blueprint and introduced the method of design of the garden on the yangtze delta. It is preserved the most complete royal palace garden. It is known as "Royal Garden Museum" and also the national key scenic spots.

Summer Palace

The Summer Palace covers an area of 293 square kilometers, mainly consisting of Longevity Hill (Washoushan) and Kunming Lake. On the back of the Longevity Hill, there is an ancient forest, Tibetan temple and the ancient business street of Suzhou River. In the east of the back of Longevity Hill, there is the Garden of Harmonious Interest, imitating the Jichang Garden in Wuxi, Jiangsu. It is called the “Garden in the Garden”.
Location: 19 Xin-jian-gong-men Rd, Haidian District, Beijing 100084, China
Admission Fee: 40Yuan/Person (low season) / 50Yuan/Person (peak season)
Opening Hours: 6:30 to 20:30
How to get there: No.726, 826, 718, 332, 331 or 737 and get of at Yiheyuan Dongmen

No. 7 Bird's Nest

The national stadium is the main stadium of 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and because of the distinctive modeling, it is also called the “Bird’s Nest”. The shell of the stadium is made of the diaphragm which can be used as filler. The bleachers adapt different number of audience through transform into different capacity. In 2009, the Bird’s Nest was selected into the “Ten Great Building” in the world in ten years.

bird's nest

In 2010, the bird's nest officially opened large winter recreation center site--- Joy Season of Ice and Snow, Snowman's Land, Cartoon Snow Castle, the Snowman Maze and some other scenic spots.
Location: Guojia Tiyuchang South Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, China
Admission Fee: 50Yuan/Person
Opening Hours: 9:oo to 18:00
How to get there: Subway Line 8 (Olympic Special Line): get off at Olympic Sports Center Station,
get out of the station from Exit B1 (northwest exit) or Exit B2 (northeast exit), and walk north. 
Bus Route Take bus no. 82, 538 and get off at National Stadium East Station.

No.8 Water Cube

The National Aquatics Center is also called the “Water Cube”. It was one of the landmark buildings in 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. It is located in the Olympic Park and on the side of the Bird’s Nest. Its membrane structure is the world's greatest. The stadium was designed according to the cell arrangement and the natural structure of soap bubbles. This kind of form had never appeared in architectural structure ever before.

water cube

The Water Cube can be divided into five parts. The Water World is located in the south of Water Cube. It is an area giving visitors the fresh, excitement, mystery and happiness of the water. The Fashion Health Area and the SPA Area has the common function to bring people health. The Theme Restaurant and the Bar has the same characteristics as the Water Cube. Visitors can enjoy the break time in Water Cube. Visitors can go shopping in the Commercial Area.
Location: Tianchen East Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, China
Admission Fee: 30Yuan/Person
Opening Hours:
Monday to Thursday: 9: 00 to 19: 00
Friday to Sunday: 9: 00 to 17: 00
How to get there: Subway Line 8 (Olympic Special Line): get off at Olympic Sports Center Station,
get out of the station from Exit B1 (northwest exit) or Exit B2 (northeast exit), and walk north. 
Bus Route Take bus no. 82, 538 and get off at National Stadium East Station.

No.9 Eating Beijing Roast Duck

Beijing Roast Duck is a Beijing famous dish with world’s reputation. It was developed by the Han nationality in Ming Dynasty, serving as the royal food. It uses materials of high quality meat duck, Peking duck, roasting with the fruit tree coals. The Beijing Roast Duck looks ruddy and the meat is fat but not greasy. The skin is crisp and the meat tastes tender. It is known as the “Delicacy under the Heaven”.

beijing roast duck

There are three famous restaurant brands in Beijing. They are Quanjude Restaurant, Pianyifang Restaurant and the Dadong Restaurant. All the three restaurants have their own feature. Also, there are three ways to eat the duck. One way is to eat the skin of the duck with the sugar. The second way is to eat it with the sweet sauce made of fermented flour, green onion strip or cucumber strip. The third way is to eat it with the mashed garlic and the sweet sauce made of fermented flour.

No.10 Watching the Beijing Opera

Beijing Opera contains varieties of method to express and perform a story and present different characters and their feelings and mood using singing, dancing, dialogue and acrobatic fighting. There are four main roles in Beijing Opera. They are Sheng (male), Dan (young female), Jing (painted face, male) and Chou (clown, male or female). The characters may be loyal or treacherous, beautiful or ugly, good or bad, their images being vividly presented.

beijing opera

Travel Essential

Best Time to Visit

Spring (March to May):
With the blooming of flowers, the weather in Spring of Beijing is suitable to have a visit. Visitors can row a boat on the lake in Beihai Park in the downtown district and have an outing in spring to climbing the Great Wall and the old temple.

Autumn (September to October):
The autumn in Beijing is short but also a good time to appreciate the maple leaves and the gingko leaves. The Ginkgo Avenue of Diaoyutai and the red leaves overflowing the Fragrant Hill is a highlight of autumn.

Travel Necessities

Spring (March to May): Temperature is moderate. Visitors had better to prepare thin coat, and a mask in case of the wind and sand.

Summer (June to August): The average temperature of summer in Beijing is over 30 ℃. Visitors can bring some sun scream to protect you from the sun burn.
Autumn (September to October): Visitors had better to prepare thin coat, and a mask in case of the wind and sand.
Winter (November to the next February): The lowest temperature in winter is -5 to 10 ℃. Down jacket is a must-prepare and the body lotion is necessary for the dry weather.

Related Beijing Tours

To travel in Beijing, we recommend some tourist tracks to foreign visitors. There are one-day tour like Beijing Highlights Seat-in-coach Tour, Beijing Classic City Seat-in-coach Tour and Badaling Great Wall & Changling (Ming Tomb) Seat-in-coach Tour. They are all highly spoken of by the visitors. And we highly recommend the Beijing Highlights Group Tour, 4 Day Classical Beijing Tour and 5 Day Essence of Beijing Tour. Visitors can also tailor-make us to custom-made your own trip.