Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Delightful Adventures: Top Ten Things to Do in Beijing: 6-10 (or Part II)

Yesterday, I posted the top 5 things to do in Beijing. Here are six through 10.

6. Beijing Acrobats

This 2000 year old tradition is a must-see. These acrobats are chosen and trained from a young age to perform nearly impossible feats. They have the little children perform too and they are so adorable!

This show is kid-friendly and seriously, you will be amazed! Just look at the blurry, illegal picture I took on the right! Actually, my husband may have taken that.

Here is the booking information.

7. The Forbidden City

You may remember this from Shanghai Noon. It was the imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty (so from about 1420 to about 1912).  It's the world's largest surviving palace complex.

Inside the museum, you can view artifacts from past Chinese dynasties. Chairman Mao's face now graces (or disgraces, depending on your views on Mao) the front of the palace.

The Forbidden City is worth visiting once because it is so rich in history. I've been there three times. Three times is too much. It gets a little boring after the first time and I am a history nerd. One time I went and it poured rain, so I sat in the hallway with friends and played cards (much of it requires walking outside).

And much to my dismay, though I love Starbucks, THIS used to be in the Forbidden City! They built it right into an ancient building! Ah! It's closed now, but the evidence remains.

8. Olympic Village 

In case you were under a rock the past few years, Beijing hosted the 2008 Summer Olympics. Now, you can tour the facilities. Well, you can at least go inside the Bird's Nest. Pretty cool, huh?!

9. Beijing Zoo and Aquarium

If you want to see lots and lots of pandas together in one place, the Beijing Zoo is the place to go! Of course, I prefer the panda reserves in Chengdu-but that's another post! Chengdu is nowhere near Beijing, so the Beijing Zoo is a good 2nd choice. They will show you where they breed these fluffy, cute endangered animals in the zoo.

You can see a plethora of other animals too, but I warn you, Chinese zoos can be a little depressing. Beijing is one of the better ones, though and they actually put the animals in a suitable environment (except the poor elephants).  It's a great place to see animals native to China (and some from other continents as well).

The aquarium is decent too. You can watch a dolphin show, which is amusing to me. A dolphin show in Beijing, China. It just sounds weird. It's the largest inland aquarium in the world and one of the best attractions at the zoo. But, you have to pay extra to get in- 100 RMB (about $17). Of course, I ended up going there with my now husband and then pre-boyfriend. I was crushing on him bad, so I am sure that made my experience more colorful.

10. Hutong Tour

The only reason  ranked this number 10 is because I haven't actually done this. But, I WANT to! I've heard it is awesome.

A hutong is an old alleyway. On these tours, you can walk, bike, or ride a rickshaw through old, preserved alleyways of Beijing. These streets are set up like ancient china, so you can experience what it was like to live in Beijing hundreds of years ago! Some of the structures were built as far back as the 1400s.

Here is information on how you can book the tours.

Delightfully Traveling,

1 comment:

  1. Oh wow! What an interesting post.
    I am so fascinated by China because it is so steeped in tradition. #10 looks like it would be very interesting.


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