Likes & Dislikes

Opinions

Beijing - large tourist crowd in the Forbidden City - Andras Schmied's photo


,,I liked the fact that Beijing is much more traditionally and authentically Chinese, and less westernized, than Shanghai. The 798 Art District was a very pleasant surprise: You can see that they’re willing to make sacrifices for their culture, and to support more progressive developments. I also liked the pleasant, modest character of the city’s inhabitants, and walking down the street you see a lot of interesting characters and scenes of street life. This made much more of an impression on me than any of the famous sights.

In this polluted megacity it was great to spend some time in Tientan Park, and see the locals playing games of mahjong. Of course, the hutongs, or old narrow alleyways, were also great.

The dirt and stink, however, were less pleasant, and the air pollution is so bad that a continual fog hangs over the city and prevents you from seeing any distance ahead.

The people are friendly and happy to help, but almost nobody speaks any English. I was travelling alone, and had the impression that for a solitary traveler without any guide or help, it’s difficult to get the most out of Beijing.

In summer Tiananmen Square is so crowded it’s genuinely uncomfortable. Also, I don’t think Beijing’s cuisine is anything special – I certainly didn’t eat well."

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,,It’s interesting that in a city with a population of over twenty million, you don’t get the feeling of being hemmed in by crowds. Somehow people are evenly diffused. Also, the smog was less of a problem than I expected (maybe we were just lucky) and there are a surprising number of trees, parks and green spaces, which are relatively well looked after.

The public safety situation is perfectly all right, and for the first time in my life I walked through a big city with a rucksack on my back, and didn’t have the least fear of being robbed. I think perhaps the huge number of CCTV and other cameras played a part in this. There’s a paradox regarding this omnipresent surveillance: on the one hand it really does improve the safety of public spaces, and gives you a sense of security, but on the other hand it’s a very creepy feeling to know – and feel – that from the moment you enter the country, every step you take it recorded.” (Sophie, 2018)

Practicals

Transport

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Beijing - Cycle rickshaw in a hutong - Andras Schmied's photo

Beijing - bike&scooter path - krista photo

Food

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Beijing - barbecue pigeons - Andras Schied's photo

Beijing - fried beetle delicacies on skewers - Andras Schmied's photo

Beijing - fried cuttlefish - Andras Schmied's photo

Beijing - ample selection of roasted insects - Andras Schmied's photo

Fun

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Beijing - choir team in the park - Krista photo

Beijing - Temple of Heaven - a 72-year-old woman sings from a Chinese opera - m.m. photo

Beijing - Card players in the Royal Park - Andras Schmied's photo

Public safety

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Beijing - heavily armed - a.d. photo

Beijing - somewhat outsized uniform - t.r. photo

Health

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China - Beijing - 4-star toilet - Elter photo

Beijing - Many signs in English, too - Krista photo

Background

Beijing - Mao Zedong, Communist leader (1893-1976) responsible for about 42.5 million deaths of Chinese people, still a national hero - Krista photo

Destination in brief

Beijing is the capital city of China. Beijing is in the northeastern part of China; the nearest sea coast is approx.  120 km (75 mi) away.

Beijing means,, northern capital".

Population (in 2020): 20,4 million- Beijing is not the most populous city in China. Shanghai is ahead of Beijing.

Average net monthly salary (in 2020): 1300 USD - (China's average: 960 USD)

Beijing suffers from some of the worst air pollution worldwide. Beijing is making ambitious efforts to reduce air pollution.

11% of Beijingers have Wang as a surname.  

These are the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage sites in Beijing:
 Imperial Palace of the Ming and Qing Dynasties
 he Summer Palace and the "Imperial Gardens."
The Temple of Heaven  and, of course, the nearby Great Wall of China


Nowadays

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Beijing - hutong - Krista photo

People

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Beijing - men are gossiping - Krista photo

Beijing - kids - Krista photo

Attractions

Forbidden City

Beijing - Forbidden City entrance - Krista photo

Summer Palace

Beijing - Summer Palace Marble Boat - Andras Schmied's photo

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