About a month ago, myself and three girlfriends headed to Beijing, China! I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about it. So here we go– the must dos, things you can skip, and other tips and tricks!
K, H, R and I flew from Shanghai to Beijing. It wasn’t very expensive, but remember you need your passport for any type of traveling in and around China. We decided to stay at a hostel to save money. I personally thought the hostel was just fine– you just need to remember you are sharing a room with random strangers so lock your shiz up! Everyone we met was really, really nice and friendly.
I requested the bottom bunk, because one time in college I fell off my bed while taking a nap and had to go to the hospital, but that’s a story for another day, friends.
The outside of our room. One night we drank wine and played cards all night… that was so much fun!
The Great Wall of China
You cannot go to Beijing and not go to the Great Wall. All three of us sort of had an emotional moment while hiking up the wall thinking– WOW.
Hiking up the Great Wall. It wasn’t the hardest hike I’ve done in China yet, but it wasn’t particularly easy.
We chose to go with a group from our hostel in Beijing– it was a 2ish hour taxi ride (with a guy that played odd Chinese music the entire time #gowithit) and we stayed at another hostel. A guide walked us up to the wall and basically told us when to be back. We had a great time!
One of my favorite pictures in China so far. I’ll never forget what it felt like to be in such a place of history, with three amazing friends, on a trip that I completely paid for myself (growing up can be fun!)
We did it!!!
Please put The Great Wall on your bucket list. It’s worth it.
The summer palace is basically a place Emperors in Old China used to vacation. This place was seriously gorgeous.
Lots of shopping, picture taking, and walking happened. Also, I’m obsessed with small adorable Asian children… #cantbetamed
The Can Skip Its:
I know what you’re thinking… HOW CAN YOU SKIP THIS!!! But the thing is, it wasn’t that exciting. H and I didn’t even know where we were for about five minutes. If you’re a huge history dork, you’d probably think this was awesome, but I’d like to argue that you don’t need to go to Tinneman Square to have an amazing Beijing experience.
The Forbidden City
This is pretty, right? Well, imagine seeing buildings like this for hours and hours… that’s all it was (still cool! Don’t get me wrong! You just don’t need to block out a whole day for it!)
Other Tips and Tricks?:
–It’s going to be crowded. Like, really crowded. You’ll be fine, I just suggest getting a purse that you can keep an eye on.
–If you go shopping or to a market (which you should! I got so much Christmas shopping done on this trip!), HAGGLE. I know, it’s awkward, but you should be asking for at least half-70% off their asking price. I have a hard time with this because they’ll beg and it’ll be awkward, but it’s China, most things are so cheap!
–I really didn’t find a lot of food I liked here, and ate some questionable Western food. Next time I would bring some more snacks.
Have you been to Beijing before? Have I convinced you you need to go yet?!
I'm Rachael, and welcome to my blog! Here you'll find stories about life abroad, living in China, blogging tips + tricks, and what I'm reading. I'm fueled by hot tea, bright lipstick, and red wine. Stay a while--I'm so glad you're here.