Top Things To Do In Beijing
Beijing, The People’s Republic of China’s thriving capital is a huge, intriguing and captivating city. Immerse yourself in culture, tradition, modernity, fine cuisine, art and much more. Beijing offers an eclectic mix of contrasting experiences. In our Top things to do in Beijing recommendations, we have included the must-sees. The star attractions are definitely The Great Wall, The Forbidden City, The Summer Palace and Tiananmen Square. They should make everyone’s list! Beijing’s historical sights are beyond impressive. The sheer grandeur and opulence, the attention to detail, delicacy and intricacy of design. The architectural magnificence is genius. The history fascinating.
More than a tour…
But if you have more time, you will discover many other top things to do in Beijing. One of our favourite experiences was taking a food tour with Lost Plate. Imagine being whizzed around the hutongs, Beijing’s old quarter, in a tuk-tuk. Prepare to be amazed as delicious dishes are conjured up for you to sample in some of the most unlikely places. A fantastic, authentic, local experience which was truly delicious and great fun.
Check out our top things to do in Beijing. Hover over the images to find out more.
The Forbidden City
No longer “forbidden” this former Imperial Palace completed in 1420, kept its doors and secrets firmly locked for 5 centuries during the Ming & Qing dynasties. This, the world’s largest palace contains 9,999 rooms. Opulent, splendid and much to discover... allow yourself plenty of time!
Lost Plate Food Tour
With Beijing’s well earned reputation as a foodie acclaimed capital, what better way to sample and learn about the local specialities than by joining a food tour? We highly recommend Lost Plate Tours, a fabulous opportunity to be whizzed around the hutongs in a tuk-tuk and eat, eat, eat!
Great Wall of China
Stretching across 15 regions from Dandong in the East to Lop Lake in the West, this, one of the most impressive architectural feats in history, is a collection of walls joined to create the longest man made structure in the world! An effective fortification to keep people out and one of the 7 new wonders! Tick.
This, the 7th largest square in the world built originally in 1651 has more than quadrupled in size! See the Mausoleum of Chairman Mao, Great Hall of the People and Monument to the People’s Heroes. Visit the National Museum of China and perhaps fly a kite. This mammoth meeting space demands attention.
Formerly known as Peking, China’s sprawling Capital is home to 13 million people, boasts 7 UNESCO world heritage sites and effortlessly sways between ultra modernity, ancient splendour and somewhere in between. Eat the duck, delight in the hutongs and prepare to be blown away by the splendour of it all!
Escape the from the city and take time to experience the beauty, tranquility and harmony of China’s finest Imperial garden. Aside from a breathtaking palace built in 1750 by Qianglong, discover temples, a marble boat, bridges, theatres and a special place to just be...
In need of retail therapy? Head to Silk Street, were you will find over 1400 retailers vying for your attention. The key here is to know the cost/feel of the “real” version and barter accordingly. If you can’t afford the real deal then buy “fake” but make sure it’s a decent copy!
Temple of Heaven
A stunning complex of temples, also known as “Tian Tian,” built by Emperor Cheng Zu in the 15th Century which showcases Imperial Architecture from the Ming Dynasty. In the main and largest temple the prestigious annual harvest ceremony was performed. Elegant, intricate and awe inspiring.
798 Art District
An exciting, eclectic mix of contemporary art, sculpture, street art, studios, cafes, bookshops and more. Housed in a former factory, this is a cool and quirky place to hang out, see things from a different perspective and allow your imagination to be stirred. A unique, diverse experience!
So as you can see, this cultured capital offers a unique city experience. There is no shortage of top things to do in Beijing, for starters, there are 7 UNESCO World Heritage sites!
The people of Beijing are rightly proud of their fascinating city and offer a warm welcome to visitors. Although English is not widely spoken, there are a few things you can do to make things easier for yourself!
We would recommend the following;
Download pleco, an excellent offline translator app.
Consider Waygo, a visual translator app which allows you to scan/translate. Useful for deciphering menus, you get 10 complimentary scans daily.
Download the Beijing Subway app, this, for us was an invaluable tool. The subway is fantastic. Signs are in English, as are announcements on the train. It’s cheap, fast, punctual and safe. Be aware most lines finish by 10.30pm.
People are helpful but a couple of apps allowed us to get that help! Younger Chinese people are more likely to know some English.
So, what will your top things to do in Beijing be? Ultimately, allowing yourself plenty of time to fully appreciate this vast and mesmerising city is the key. You can hurdle from one breathtaking site to the next, but to really appreciate Beijing’s splendour and experience being in the heart of the city itself, take it slowly!
Buy Loney Planet Beijing here.
Thank You for taking the time to read our top things to do in Beijing recommendations. We hope it has been useful. If you are interested in the different types of posts we write, takealookaround our site. In addition, if the Lost Plate food tour appeals, you can read our detailed review here.