China 🇨🇳 - Beijing

· 3 min read

Tips 👏

  • Get yourself a travel card for the tube as soon as you arrive. Very cheap and reliable. Ask for help at the ticket desk in all stations.
  • Distances are big, so be ready for long walking days.
  • Avoid commuting the Mondays and the Fridays since that’s when all the suburban are commuting.
  • If your first stop in China is Beijing, make sure to screenshot the address of your hotel on a map. It’ll be useful for the taxi driver at the airport.

🏠 Accommodation

We slept at the Beijing 161 Beihai Courtyard Hotel. Pretty good locations and very nice room. Staff not helpful but still a good base camp. Free water too.

🚲 Getting there

Flight from Maldives with SriLanka Airlines, including a stop in Colombo.

⏱ Duration

We stayed four nights in Beijing, but five would have been better.

A day in the city 🏢

First day we just wandered around. Initially planed to chill, it turned out into a scavenger hunt for a SIM card. After walking around 15km in the city, we managed to found one. So again, make sure you buy one at the airport.

It was still a good opportunity to get a first grasp of China, see some landmarks on the way and try some local food. Unplanned and tiring, but ok.

Great Wall Tour 🏗

We booked a tour via AirBnB we couldn’t recommend enough. We went to non-touristic areas, where we were almost the only ones. The place was called Huanghuacheng, about 2h drive from Beijing. You can find the tour here. If you book it, say hi to Roy from us, such a great dude! We spent in total around 3 hours on the wall, while having Roy giving us good historical details.

You can also go to the most famous spot (with the cable car) but be ready to queue and fight for a decent picture. If you’re going with the non-touristic area, bring some good hiking shoes as the wall is very steep. Also pack some snacks since it’ll be most likely for the full day due to the traffic in the city (we arrived back at 5PM).


Beijing City Tour🚶

We booked a tour to get all the highlight of the city in one day. Including Tian’anmen Square, Forbidden City and Summer Palace. Overall, we would not recommend that kind of tour since it’s with a lot of people, and also you’re commuting by bus, which make you loose a lot of time. We would recommend you to go to all those places by yourself using the subway, and hire a local guide when you get there. You can ask your hotel/host to book you ticket via their Chinese website so you just have to pick them up at each of the attraction without queuing.

We highly recommend the Forbidden city (huge and beautiful) and the Summer Palace (artificial lake and hill). When you get to the Summer Palace, make sure to do the boat ride. It will bring you to the other side of the hill where there a lot of very nice canals and shops. You will then be able to hike at the top of the Longevity Hill with a nice view on all the park.


Restaurants 🍲

Checkout FourSquare or Trip Advisor behind a good slow VPN is the best you can do, or simply go and be adventurous around since plenty of options. Our only good find was SiJiMinFu. A chain of high-end restaurant famous for their peking duck.

Hope this was helpful, you can ask us any questions on Instagram.

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