The Forbidden City.

On July 19, 2012, in Beijing, Forbidden City, Must-sees, by Jack Li

When you are Traveling to Beijing there are certain places that are unavoidable and one of these places is the Forbidden City, next to the Tiananmen Square and an important point on your Beijing tour. The Forbidden City was initially an imperial palace for the Ming and the Qing dynasties, it was built in 1420 […]

When you are Traveling to Beijing there are certain places that are unavoidable and one of these places is the Forbidden City, next to the Tiananmen Square and an important point on your Beijing tour.

The Forbidden City was initially an imperial palace for the Ming and the Qing dynasties, it was built in 1420 and it has 980 buildings, who served as imperial residence and political courts, and one of its peculiarities is that all these buildings are surrounded by a moat who is 52 meters wide and 6 meters deep, you can only enter to the Forbidden City by four doors, and the only ones that are accessible to the public now are the Meridian Gate (next to Tiananmen and the main entrance) and the Gate of Divine Might (next to the Jingsang park that was built with the debris of the moat construction).

The City has a rectangular form and a spectacular tower at every corner and that is the most visible thing that you can see from the corners, the only thing that is higher than the moat and they have been built in inspiration of ancient paintings recreating palaces.

When you enter to the Forbidden City by the Meridian Gate you arrive at the exterior Court and you have to cross the Gate of the Supreme Harmony to get to the real Court, the Central Harmony, this court is the biggest and the most important in the Chinese politics, it was there where all the decisions were made and also the weddings and investitures.

Behind this hall there is the Hall of Central peace, where the emperor prepared himself for the ceremonies, after you pass this point you are in the inner Court, that’s where the emperor lived and it’s distinguished from the exterior by the amount of “nature” that you can find there.

Beyond this point you enter in a human-made forest/garden that holds lots of palaces and halls (some of them are accessible to the public) and each one of these hold a practical function in the emperor’s life.

Each building has its own symbolism and they are constructed by the “Classic of Rites” a way of building that says that each

But the Forbidden City is not just a place to see different buildings; it also holds a museum where you can see a large collection of different types of objects that were part of the Qing dynasty, these objects include the largest collection of Chinese ceramics in Beijing, up to 50,000 paintings, jade objects and palace artifacts such as daily life objects or ceremonial and bureaucratic items.

The Forbidden City was impossible to be visited by foreigners during the Imperial Era but now you can visit it, so don’t miss the opportunity and spend a good day there in your Beijing Tour! Then you can visit Tiananmen Square and/or the Jingsang Park which are next to the Forbidden City so you don’t even have to worry about the transportation!

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The Great Wall of China

On June 19, 2012, in Adventure Trip, Beijing, Cultural Experience, Great Wall, by Jack Li

When you travel to Beijing, the top tourist sight is easily the Great Wall of China. If you travel to Beijing and do not see the Great Wall, then not only are you missing out on one of the Seven Wonders of the World, but you are also denying yourself the most beautiful view of […]

When you travel to Beijing, the top tourist sight is easily the Great Wall of China. If you travel to Beijing and do not see the Great Wall, then not only are you missing out on one of the Seven Wonders of the World, but you are also denying yourself the most beautiful view of China available. The Great Wall, although a large tourist attraction, has many different portions that people can travel to see. There are areas heavily populated with other tourists, but there are also areas that are more remote where the wall has been left in its original state.

The Great Wall was constructed in the seventh century B.C. by feudal warlords in order to defend the Chinese Empire from Mongolian and Manchu enemies to the north. During the early construction of the Great Wall, it is estimated that hundreds of thousands of people lost their lives due to the building conditions being so dangerous. It is also said that the early parts of the wall were built from materials that could be found in the local areas due to rock and stone being too difficult to transport across the country. Several dynasties later, the wall was constructed from bricks. The Great Wall is fragmented and due to that, there are areas that are preserved really well and areas that are a little more worn.

When I traveled to the Great Wall, I went to the Badaling Remnant of the Great Wall. It serves as the Western gate of the whole fortification system. This area of the wall has been preserved as it was when it was originally constructed. There are fractions of the wall that are whole and easy to navigate, but there were also areas I climbed that were broken and deteriorated, which were a lot more difficult to climb. The broken portions we climbed are representative of the history that this portion of the wall endured. There was an attack in this area in about 1644 where LiZicheng who was extremely resentful of the corrupt regime of the day, led his troops from this area of the wall in a rebellion to successfully overthrow the Ming Dynasty. However, despite the wall not being renovated and difficult to climb, the resulting view was well worth it! The view from the top of the tower that we reached was breathtaking. I have never seen such a view in my life. This portion of the wall, still in its original form, takes you back in history to its construction two thousand years ago.

To travel to Beijing and not visit the Great Wall would be a disgrace! It was one of my most memorable experiences since arriving in Beijing. I definitely recommend traveling to the Badaling Remnant Great Wall for it is in its original state, which is not something that a lot of the other sections of the Great Wall can offer. However, if this is the section you decide to visit, I recommend bringing your own water and snacks because once you arrive, there are not places to buy these things. There is a shack that sells souvenirs, snacks, and water, but it closes in the early afternoon. The Great Wall certainly lives up to its reputation and I would definitely recommend taking a day to appreciate its beauty! 

Temple of Heaven

On June 11, 2012, in Beijing, Cool Places, Cultural Experience, Must-sees, by Jack Li

Situated in the Southeast area of Beijing, the Temple of Heaven is a complex of religious buildings used for annual ceremonies to pray to heaven for good harvest as well as for sacrificial ceremonies. The temple was completed in 1420 during the Ming Dynasty and remained in use for several dynasties afterward. It was used […]

Situated in the Southeast area of Beijing, the Temple of Heaven is a complex of religious buildings used for annual ceremonies to pray to heaven for good harvest as well as for sacrificial ceremonies. The temple was completed in 1420 during the Ming Dynasty and remained in use for several dynasties afterward. It was used for ritual ceremonies until about 1914, which was when it was opened as a museum to the public. The Temple of Heaven is one of the largest existing complexes of sacrificial buildings and is easily one of the most intricately painted buildings I have ever come across. If you ever have the ability to travel to Beijing, visiting the Temple of Heaven is a definite must, which can easily be arranged through a Beijing Tour site.

After getting off the subway at Tiantan Dongmen Station, the Temple of Heaven is about a five minute walk and is also conveniently located near the Pearl Market. I was easily able to visit both attractions in the same day, which is ideal for those who have a limited amount of time to spend in the city. Upon arriving at the temple there are several ticket options available. You have the ability to buy an “entrance ticket” or a “through ticket,” which is the ticket option I would recommend. Buying the “through ticket” allows you to actually get a closer look at the temple and the difference in price is only about 20 rmb. Having the ability to approach the temple is worth the difference in price for it allows you to look inside the temple and to get a better look at the construction of the temple as well as the artistic intricacies.

Once inside the area, the first thing I immediately noticed was how vast the area seemed to be. The area surrounding the temple is filled with beautiful vegetation that causes you to feel as if you are no longer in the city of Beijing, but instead in a park with fresh air and plenty of trees. While I was visiting the area, I was fortunate enough to witness a band playing in the park area. They were surrounded by a large group of people, all of whom were thoroughly enjoying the authentic Chinese music. After walking a ways farther, I eventually reached the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest, which consists of three tiers representing Man, Earth, and Heaven. This was the grandest of the sights to see in the area, but there are other sections consisting of the Circular Mound Altar, which is the altar proper, as well as the Imperial Vault of Heaven, which is a smaller replica of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest.

Although I only spent a limited amount of time in the Temple of Heaven, spending an entire day there would be an easy feat. In order to get the most out of the experience, Beijing tours are recommended. Going in blindly without understanding all of the symbolism present undermines the experience. Traveling to the Temple of Heaven was a memorable experience and I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to experience some of China’s rich history.

 

A visit to the Birds Nest…

On October 12, 2010, in Beijing, Cool Places, Must-sees, by Jack Li

As part of China Tours , why not include a visit to the capital city and see everything it has to offer. Check out Beijing Tours for ideas and start planning your  itinerary today!  One of the must see sights while you are in Beijing is the Beijing National Stadium, otherwise known as the Birds Nest. Seeing […]

As part of China Tours , why not include a visit to the capital city and see everything it has to offer. Check out Beijing Tours for ideas and start planning your  itinerary today! 
One of the must see sights while you are in Beijing is the Beijing National Stadium, otherwise known as the Birds Nest. Seeing really is believing with this particular attraction! A visit to the Olympic stadium may not seem that exciting at first, but if you bear in mind that this stadium cost US$423 million to build, it is definitely worth a visit! Even from a distance its amazing architecture and design, which gives the stadium the appearance of a “Birds Nest”, is impressive and as you get closer to the structure, you are blown away by its sheer enormity.
 

View of the Birds Nest from a distance

A bargain for students at 25 yuan for admission into the stadium building (50 yuan without a student card), there is no excuse not to go inside and check out the view from the different levels. We went to the lower level first to sit in the front row of the stadium and check out the track. There are plenty of props, photos and videos to entertain and you can see the start of the 100 metres track with models of  the runners on their starting blocks. And it is pretty cool to say you were sitting in the front row of the Olympic Stadium! 

The view from inside the stadium

With a seating capacity of 91,000, you begin to imagine how amazing the atmosphere would have been during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, especially during the opening and closing ceremonies. I would love to have experienced this buzz and have been a part of such a  huge crowd, all cheering and clapping during the events.  After taking all of this in, we made our way Detoxi… Even if you don”t plan on doing a saliva drug test program, your health will benefit from adding more saliva drug test superfoods to your daily diet. up to Level 6 in the upper stand, the highest point in the stadium. As we climbed up the rows of seats, we all started to feel a bit dizzy and breathless as you look down and realise how high up we really were! But it made for an amazing view of the stadium and we started our nbso online casino photo taking session!

On our way out we had a quick browse of the gift shop and the other attractions, such as wax works of previous Olympic Committee members. And then as the sun began to set, we left the stadium and this made for the highlight of the day – Equity lines of free-credits-report.com are revolving accounts that work like a free-credits-report.com card, which can be paid down or charged up for the term of the loan. when the Birds Nest turns on its lights and becomes illuminated in red, an impressive sight and a beautiful image against the night sky.

The Birds Nest illuminated red at night

Next door is the Water Cube, otherwise known as the National Aquatics Center, which was built for the swimming competitions in the 2008 Olympics. We did not go inside on this particular visit but it has now been converted into a water park, the largest in Asia, and is well worth a visit on another day if you are looking ! This building is also illuminated at night, first it glows bright blue before changing colours to purple, red, yellow and green and so on, another amazing sight and a great photo opportunity!

The Water Cube illuminated blue at night

Finally I”ll leave you with my top tips for visiting the Olympic Stadium:

1. Pay admission to go inside and explore the stadium as well as wondering around the Olympic site.

2. Head up to the very top row of seats to get a panaromic view of the stadium and to get a feel for its true size.

3. Make sure you come out of the stadium as it is beginning to get dark so that you can see everything lit up.

I hope you all enjoy your visit there and for more information on what to do, where to stay and more in China, please visit china travel.

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