A Travellerspoint blog

It really is "Great"

The Great Wall of China

overcast 32 °C

We intended to get up early to beat the crowds, but we got lazy and were at the entrance by about 10am. Entrance tickets including return chair lift around $34 each. Expensive but worth it.

As usual in China, there were long (but quite fast and organised) queues. We walked from station 14 all the way to the end station 23. It took around 4 hrs and was quite steep and exhausting in places. Well and truly sick of steps by the end.







Returned to Dognzhimen station by about 5pm, killed a few hours eating in the food court and using up the last of our Chinese money, then out to the airport for the shocker 3am flight to Vladivostok. Margaret managed a few hours sleep at the airport while Mike watched some TV.

A very "Great" star.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.png 5 star day

Posted by MikeinCairns 08:23 Archived in China Comments (0)

Bus to Mutianyu

Mutianyu Great Wall

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A casual start, and farewell to our nice Beijing airbnb. One stop on the Metro took us to the busy but organized bus station at Dongzhimen. Two buses later and we were at Mutianyu one of the places to see the Great Wall. Total travel time around 2.5 hrs cost $3.

Decided to live it up a bit at the WangShanYuan Farm stay $100 per night. The young guy from the hotel actually jumped on to our bus to get us off at the correct bus stop! Then gave us a ride to the hotel. Actually thought it was a scam at first.

Tomorrow we will go up to the Great Wall. Boring travel day today and no photos, but did notice something interesting about Chinese toilet paper. Whats missing?


Uneventful star.pngstar.pngstar.png 3 star day

Posted by MikeinCairns 05:37 Archived in China Comments (0)

A day of propagada

Tiananmen Square and the Military Museum

overcast 36 °C
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Got around today on the clean and efficient Metro. Despite being Saturday and school holidays it was not overly crowded. Single ride is around 30-50 cents.





Started at Tiananmen square but it was hugely crowded. Saw the outside of the Forbidden City and the National museum but the crowds turned us off.



Then went (on a whim) to the Military museum which was amazing. A gigantic building with a very impressive display of air power, tanks, nuclear bombs, artillery, guns etc. At least 6 MIGs a massive bomber and many interesting historical items from US, Germany, Japan. Tanks artillery going back to the 18th century. And of course dripping with propaganda.





Back home for an early dinner of chilli beef, dumplings and beer $16

A very nationalistic star.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.png 4 star day

Posted by MikeinCairns 04:59 Archived in China Comments (0)

Cultural day in Beijing

The summer palace of the Qing dynasty

overcast 32 °C
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Rained all night so woke up to a much cooler day. After a light breakfast we walked the short 15 minute walk to the Metro, trying to time our journey for after the peak hour rush. Around 35 minute journey to the Summer Palace ($1 each).

Even though it was a Friday, there wre still short queues to buy tickets and gain entry ($6 each). It is school holidays so lots of families out and about.






We were very careful not to do any "Romping" in the park. Never know who might be watching....


Finshed off the day at the famous Sijiminfu Peking Duck restaurant which was amazing. It supposed to be top three in Beijing. Dinner for two $35. Service and food was five-star.

An enlightening star.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.png 4 star day

Posted by MikeinCairns 07:42 Archived in China Comments (0)

Our first day discovering Beijing

Hot as hell but pleasantly surprised

overcast 38 °C
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We definetly came to China reluctantly and with low expectations. But we are very very surprised. Beijing is super organised, one of the cleanest Asian cities we have been to, the people are quite nice, and the food (so far) as been delicious. And of course everything is cheap.



Started the day with a visit to the police station to register. Our airbnb host walked us there though the hutongs (small alleys) and showed us a lot of things including recommended places to eat. There are spotless and free public toilets everywhere (five just in our small hutong). We found out the reason is because many people do not have toilets in their home!



Had lunch at a dumpling restaurant ($10 for both of us including beer) and bought some supplies from supermarket. The alcohol aisle was interesting. Looks normal enough...


...until you start looking...onion wine!!!


...or how about a big night out with a 5L platic container of 60% spirits for just $15 !!!


There is every imaginable vehicle here, but a lot of electric bikes and scooters which can be a bit frightening as they come up behind you because they are totally silent.






Extremely hot and humid. More than Cairns! The sky is grey and the pollution is terrible. Waited until it cooled a little in the afternoon to walk to Jingshan Park a popular place to see sunset.


A very surprising star.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.png 4 star day

Posted by MikeinCairns 07:01 Archived in China Comments (0)

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