Family Trip to Beijing !( 7 days 6 nights)
- 出行天数/7 天
It has been one of my dreams to have a family trip with my parents. However due to many reasons such as work, short holidays and financial reasons etc, it never comes true. And it finally comes to reality after I quit my job one month ago this time. After discussion with my mother (my father’s opinion doesn't matter lol) and my elder sister, we all achieved on this. So let’s do it! My elder sister couldn't join us because she didn't have holidays, instead she became a major sponsor to our trip expense! (i just could not lover her more!!!)
DAY1: ARRIVAL, DINNER: DADONG ROAST DUCK, REST
DAY2: YONG HE GONG-CONFUCIAN TEMPLE & GUOZIJIAN MUSEUM-TIENANMEN SQUARE
DAY3: FORBIDDEN CITY-JINGSHAN PARK(HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!)
DAY4: GREAT WALL
DAY5: SUMMER PALACE
DAY6: TEMPLE OF HEAVEN-BIRD NEST STADIUM
DAY7: GONG WANG FU, DEPARTURE
P.S.: We didn't go to the 798 ART CENTER because my parents are not a fan of art. If you are interested in modern art, it will be a good choice to go. Also SANLI TUN and HOU HAI areas are recommended, as there are lots of nice bars.
PEACE OF MIND: It is said that the tourist resorts in Beijing is crowed 365 days a year. So be well prepared. Unless you were the earliest to arrive, otherwise, embrace the crowd!
My first time to Beijing was back in 2013, I didn't eat the well-known Peking Roast Duck. Therefore I told myself I needed to make up the pity this time. My friend highly recommended me to go to DADONG where even local Beijing citizens love this restaurant instead of QUANJUDE where many tourists go. DADONG is more traditional way of eating the duck. Or you can go to 1949 DUCK DE CHINE (well even from the name you can tell it sounds pretty western style) if you prefer western style. My parents and I tended to keep it as traditional as it could so we chose DADONG.
We arrived at the restaurant located in Jinbao Street around 8pm. Fortunately there were not a long line. We took a number and only one table to wait. While we were waiting at the lobby, we saw the duck roasting area too. Drinks were also served while waiting. You could take pictures inside the duck roasting area, getting very close to the doves. The moment you entered the area, it was really really hot as the fire keeps burning in the doves. But It was a very good time killer.
I like the environment very much, very romantic. But my father complained the light was too dim. As we were not too hungry and a bit tired after the flight. So we just ordered one duck and one veggie dish. The duck costed 298RMB each, and you need to order the source, 15rmb per person and free refill. The pies to roll the duck meat was free and was available for unlimited refill. The average price for a veggie dish was around 100 rmb.
Once the duck was done, the chef would start to slice it in front of you. Firstly slice the duck skin, and the meat. Dip the crispy skin in the sugar and the meat in the garlic. Generally the roasted skin would be a little bit bitter, but the sugar ideally remove the bitter taste. Eat the roasted skin while it is hot and crispy so that you can have the best taste:)
DAY2 YONG HE GONG
It would be quite convenient if you purchase a public transport card in the metro service centre, as it can be used in metro, buses and even train to GREAT WALL (if you purchase tickets at the train station window, the tickets normally would be sold out early in the morning. But if you have a transport card, you can get on a train anytime.)
The deposit for one card costs 20rmb, and you can put in any amount over 20rmb as you like. I suggest to put in 50RMB, even you could not use up the money, it can be return in some specific stations (such as the Beijing station, can ask the staff for info)together with the deposit. Or you can use UBER to call e car but plz avoid the rush hour, as you might know how terrible the traffic is in Beijing.
Once you got the card, you can start your journey.
YONG HE GONG is also known as the LAMA TEMPLE. It was the temple in highest standard in the later period of Ming and Qing dynasty in ancient China. The construction standard was the same as that in the forbidden city.
Walked across the entrance, you would see a long road with green trees alongside the road, the sky was covered by the trees. It would be better if there were less people. Then we came to the first temple where the Chinese would burn incense to worship the Budda. After that, you could walk into the temple and had a close look at the Buddas.
The most impressive temple was that where stands a 18 meters tall BUDDA. In fact the total height is 26 meters, with 8 meters under the ground and 18 meters above, using one complete white sandalwood. It is said it weighs 100ton, with a gold coating and luxrious jewelries all over the sculpture. I didn't take a pic of it. I have attached a pic from baidu.com fyi.
Came out of the YONG HE GONG, crossed the road and walked alongside the quiet hutong opposite to YONG HE GONG, it would lead you to the CONFUCIAN TEMPLE and GUOZIJIAN MUSEUM, where use to be the highest school for the royal family, as well as the examination place to work for the Emperor. There was a saying goes like: many scholars studied for ten years for a chance to become a Zhuangyuan (the one has the highest score in the exam) someday and work for the emperor, at which time glory, power and fortunate would follow.
In the ancient China, the top three scored in the exam were called: Zhuangyuan (1st), Bangyan (2nd) and Tanhua (3rd). They would walk across the three gates in the below pic. The Emperor and the Zhuangyuan would walk through the middle gate, so you can tell the status of Zhuangyuan, as high as the Emperor. The civil and military officials would walk through the gates on the left and right together with Bangyan and Tanhua separately.
The last part of the day, we came to Tienanmen Square. My father’s favorite as he used to be a solider when he was young. He was here 35 yrs ago but did not take a pic at that time. It was a pity for him. But this time i took loads of pictures for him to make up the pity. Everyday comply with sunset, the national flag would be dropped and risen again when the sun rises.
PEACE OF MIND: If you want to go up to the Tienanmen Square in the second floor, you need to get there before 4:30pm as the tickets will not be sold afterwards. And one more thing, it was the biggest mistake we made this time which wasted us lots of time: The FORBIDDEN CITY is right behind the Tienanmen Square, and the road to Tienanmen Square is a one way and also the longest as you need to pass the security check, and once you walk over the bridge in front of the Tienanmen Square, you could not return as it is a one way road, you need to travel a huge circle to get back!! SO PLEASE BE AWARE OF IT!! I suggest you plan the route like this: optional-[start from early morning: watch the flag rising ceremony (no bother if you were not interested in it as you need to be at the Square before 4:30 and queue up for a long time and in a word not recommended.)]- visit the Chairman Mao's Menorial Hall (open 8:00am-12pm from Tuesday to Sunday), then visit Tienanmen square, and go up to the second floor of the building (plz remember to check your bags at the cloakroom after buying the tickets. Ticket price is 15rmb per person. Then you can go direct to the Forbidden city, remember to purchase the tickets one day in advance, for Chinese citizen is easier as we just buy the ticket online and enter with our ID card in an express line. But for foreigners, seems you need to go to the ticket window and print out a bar code to enter, or just buy the tickets on the spot and queue up a loooong line to enter. Then exit from Shenwu Gate, right in the opposite is JINGSHAN PARK. Highly and strongly recommend to go, the entrance price is 2rmb only, but the view was great!! You can see the whole view of FORBIDDEN CITY from the pavilion on top of the hill (see photo below).
In the evening, we came to WANGFUJIN STREET. There was a snack street where you could eat fried grasshopper, scorpion, seahorse and seastar etc. Give it a try if you dare! You can also buy some tranditional Peking desserts in DAOXIANGCUN. The desserts are not too sweet. Many local people like it too.
DAY3: FORBIDDEN CITY
The center line of the FORBIDDEN CITY is always full of people as it is the classic route for tourists. The most important palaces line up in the center line including QIANQING GONG, TAIHE DIAN (The highest standard palace in existance).
You can watch closely on the palace roof, and found that there are 10 small sculptures in each corner of the roof of TAIHE DIAN.
It’s a huge palace to walk around in the forbidden city. Besides the central line, you can go to the concubine palaces and imperial garden. In the end of the day, you might get lost in this mega palace. However, fyi there were tens of thousands of people died back in the ancient times, there were lots of stories happen in the concubine palaces. You can google for it if you are interested in them.
At Lunch time we came to FUMINSIJI restaurant for Peking duch again. The reason we came here is because it is just outside the FORBIDDEN CITY, and if you sit beside the window, you can see a corner of it. Nice view though. The roasted duck was not as good as that in DADONG, but the rest dishes are very delicious, such as the roast lamb, desserts, veggies etc.
In the afteroon, we went up to the TIANANMEN SQUARE BUILDING. Not much to see but my father enjoyed it.
The best part of the day is the view on top of Jingshan park. Highly highly recommended to go in the afternoon and enjoy the sunset!!!
DAY4 THE GREAT WALL
It was pretty much a nightmare to go to the Great Wall as there were so many people waiting for the train in the waiting room. Once the gate was open, people just ran as fast as they could to get a seat on the train, even the seats next for their friends or family. OMG! The return tickets costed 12 rmb per person by using the the transport card.
Piece of mind: DO NOT trust the guys in the street, outside the train station etc saying they can drive you to the great wall etc.
The weather was great the day we went. In fact, climbing the Great Wall was a lot more difficult than i expected. Some parts of the wall were extremely steep. We did not finish the whole walk as my father was a little bit fear.
DAY5 SUMMER PALACE
When i was lining up to buy the tickets, there were two french women standing in front of me. And they gave a fake RMB note to the staff. I overheard the staff talk that they say many foreigners got fake RMB note as they went to some illeagel money exchange place to exchange money because of better exchange rate. The truth is they could hardly tell whether the note is genuine or not. So here I suggest foreighners go to leagal exchange centre for money exchange.
DAY 6 HEAVEN TEMPLE
THE TEMPLE OF HEAVEN was one of my favorite places in this trip. The temple in blue roof caught my eyes immediately. In the past five days, i saw too many yellow tiles roof buildings, the blue tile roof one stood out from them. The TEMPLE OF HEAVEN used to be a place where the Emperor held worship ceremonies to the God and wished for peaceful and prosperous lives for the county and its people.
Besides the temples, there were large areas of trees and greenland, like a forest. I even saw squirrels in the forest. My mother was very excited to see the forest and we spent quite some time walking around it.
In the evening, we took a bus to the Bird nest stadium. The senerary at night was very beautiful. We paid for 10RMB each photo in front of the BIRD NEST, WATER SQUARE, OLYMPIC TORCH. 10RMB was for the 6 inch size. 8 inch costed 20RMB and 12 inch costed 40RMB. If you wanted a plastic cover for each photo, needed to pay 2rmb extra for the 6inch ones.
DAY 7 CHAIRMAN MAO
In the last day, we came to worshop Chairman Mao in the morning. Same as otherwhere else, loooong queue. And Same as going to the TIANANMEN SQUARE, need to check your bags in the cloakroom and went through strict security check.
In the last day, we came to worship Chairman Mao in the morning. Same as other where else, loooong queue. And Same as going to the TIENANMEN SQUARE, need to check your bags in the cloakroom and went through strict security check. We’ve queued up for more than one hour and finished the trip in side the building within 10 minutes. We had a quick glance of Chairman Mao's remains as the staff would ask you to follow up the line. no photos for sure.
Piece of mind: The CHAIRMAN MAO'S MEMORIAL HALL opens from 8:00am-12pm from Tuesday to Sunday.
Our last stop was Prince Kung's Mansion. The MANSION used to be the biggest corrupted official back in Qing Dynasty. His personal treasures were more than that of a country, in a word, he was the richest person at that time, even in nowadays, he could be ranked in top 10 worldwide. He was just fabulously wealthy. He had what the Emperor had, and even had what the Emperor did not have.
Above was my family trip to Beijing. If you need more info, plz feel free to contact me. Or add me on skype: clairevoila.
Hope you will enjoy your trip in Beijing !