China, Beijing: Temple of heaven, tea and Great Wall
August 2, 2019
by Mariia Abramova
Beijing is one of the most beautiful cities in China. The rich history of the northern capital dates back more than five thousand years. During this huge period of time, the city has undergone many changes, formed its unique harmony of traditional and modern. Now we can see it in all its glory.
The climate here is continental. Summer is hot and humid, and winter is dry and windy. The weather in Beijing is almost year-round favorable for travel, but the best periods are autumn from September to October, and spring from April to May.
Beijing has a very developed transport network, which is represented by almost all known types of transport. A cheap and quick way to get anywhere in the subway. For fans of exotics, if desired, you can use the services of a bicycle rickshaw.
Where to stay
Beijing has plenty of different places for a traveler to stay, both for the long and short term. There are countless hotels, hostels, and apartments for all tastes. For connoisseurs of history and traditions, there is an opportunity to stay in the so-called Hutuns, traditional quarters of the city.
Beijing is a big city, so when you choosing a residential area, it is advisable to proceed from the location of the attractions chosen for the visit. In any area of the city, you can find the desired housing option.
What to visit
Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square
The size of the territory Forbidden City is striking. Its area is 72 hectares. The Forbidden City is enclosed by a wall that is an ideal rectangle, inside which are several hundred buildings. Most of the buildings here are wooden, so smoking on the territory is strictly prohibited.
The Forbidden City is connected to Tiananmen Square through the gates of Tiananmen. This square is the largest square in the world. Access here is open 24/7. The best time to visit this square is the early morning when the flag-raising ceremony starts because at this time there are not so many people. Around the square, there is something to pay attention to the mausoleum of Mao Tse-tung, the Museum of Chinese History and the Museum of the Chinese Revolution, and many other interesting things for connoisseurs of history.
The Great National Theatre, which adjoins the square, deserves special attention. From above the theater is a huge egg floating in the lake, which was artificially created specifically for this project. From the side, it resembles a half ellipse or ellipse, which lower part to drowned in the water. The only entrance and exit from the theater is the tunnel under the lake water. Around the canal is a wonderful park area, where you can walk after the performance, enjoying the true beauty of nature.
This street is a commercial heart of the city, it appeared around seven hundred years ago, its length is 810 meters at length. Most of the street is pedestrian. There are modern shops with neon signs, and cafes and tea houses in old-style
Each tea house is different, has its own unique flavor and specifics. In a tea house, in addition to the cafe, there is also a shop that sells various varieties of tea, utensils and other things of the relevant theme.
The most basic principle, which is followed by the masters – is the observance of order in tea brewing and absence of haste. The goal is to reveal all the taste aspects of this magical drink as much as possible. Everything in the tearoom promotes harmony. The master explains to visitors how to properly brew different varieties of tea, performs special rituals, and you can feel the divine aroma of tea.
Along this street, there are several bronze statues, street musicians and barbers, as well as the rickshaw. They attract the attention of tourists making interesting photos.
Here there is the famous Night Market Donghuamen. It is located on the north side of the street. This market is famous for its diverse street food and drink. Here you can find all traditional Chinese snacks – Chuan kebabs to sweet apples in caramel. Any, even the most fastidious gourmet will find here a treat to his liking. And the bravest visitors can try scorpion or fried insects.
Great Wall of China: Badaling
The most popular section of the Great Wall of China is located about sixty kilometers from the capital. You can get there by bus or taxi. This is probably the most mystical place in Beijing. When you walk on a stone path, you feel an inexplicable excitement. According to local legend, the direction and place for construction were indicated by a dragon, which passed along a mountain range, and in its tracks erected a wall.
Extraordinary mountain relief takes its toll, there are a lot of steep ascents and cliffs, it is very difficult to climb, considering the fact that the height of each step is on average above a knee.
The wall is about eight meters high and six meters wide. Every five hundred meters there are watchtowers and resting places where you can stop.
Beijing Automobile Museum
A very interesting museum was open relatively recently in 2012. This museum is one of the most interesting and unusual in automotive themes. The building is made in the form of the human eye looking into the sky.
The museum consists of five floors. The exhibits are located from second to fifth floors. The main theme of the museum is showing the whole evolution of the car as a vehicle. On the top floor, the story begins, with first specimens. The inspection should start from this floor and go down, tracing the temporary changes. On the first floor where is the end of the exhibition, you can see a suppose cars of the future.
The museum also has several restaurants and recreation areas.
Altar of the Century and Peace Park
The altar of the century is one of the most unusual structures, it marks the beginning of the new century. To the central altar, which is made in the form of huge sun hours, leads a path, the total length, which total length is 262 meters. It is lined by262 bronze plates, which is written the text, consisting of a total of 180 characters. The text tells about the major milestones of the country’s history. There are Holy Fire Square, Bronze Trail, Main Altar, Bell of the Century and Cultural Square located on the territory of this complex.
Peace Park, a huge theme park in the center of Beijing, was founded in 1993. Its area is 47 hectares. There are more than a hundred architectural structures and famous statues from fifty countries, built on a scale of 1 to 10. It’s kind of a miniature world. Egyptian Pyramids, Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, Sydney Opera House and many other equally beautiful buildings. Gardens in Italian and Japanese style decorate the local park, a walk on it get you a pleasure.
Temple of heaven
The area of this cultural object is even larger than the square of Forbidden City. All buildings are divided into the round – basic and square – auxiliary. The most striking and world-famous building with a three-tiered blue roof is a hall of sacrificial prayers, built of marble.
There are many interesting and beautiful buildings on the temple grounds. One such Altar of the Sky, it is three round white terraces, one on top of the other, resembling a pyramid. A long time ago here made sacrifices to the sky.
One of the features of this magical place is the incredible acoustic properties. The hall of the heavenly vault is surrounded by a wall of returning sounds. If one person stands at one end of the wall and the other at the opposite, they will be able to hear each other while talking without raising their voices. Still, locals say that if you stand in the center of the Altar of the sky and clap your palms, the effect will certainly hit you.
These few beautiful places are just a little bit of what this magical city can surprise. Many people who have visited it more than once, still pull here as a magnet, and they come back again and again, discovering each time something new.
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August 9, 2019
What a lovely city!