8 Tips For Your First Time Jiankou to Mutianyu Day Hike

Use These Tips to Make Your First Jiankou & Mutianyu Hike Successful

8 Tips For Your First Time Jiankou to Mutianyu Day Hike guide

You don’t have to be a seasoned adventurer to hike from Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall. But just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it’s easy. If you’re thinking about walking it for the first time, consider these tips.

1. Dress Appropriately.

You can climb to reach Zhengbeilou Tower in a sturdy pair of sneakers, but it’s best to opt for something with ankle support. The trail is steep and mostly dirt.

You probably need hiking poles, and it’s a good idea to bring along a sunhat and sunglasses in Summer and Fall. If possible, avoid wearing cotton – it traps moisture in summer. Wool or microfiber clothing is best.

2. Pack Light.

Packing only the essentials can help you hike Jiankou & Mutianyu successfully. Avoid bringing unnecessary items that will only make your backpack heavy and bulky.

Just bring only what you need, like water, snacks, a hat, etc., for a day hike. You’ll feel more comfortable on your journey with a lighter pack.

3. Eat A Big Breakfast Before Your Hike.

Eating a lot of food will boost your metabolism, generate body heat, and keep you going all the way to the top.

4. Postpone Your Hike If the Weather Is Bad.

The weather in Jiankou Great Wall is unpredictable, and it changes unexpectedly. Before you start your walk, check Jiankou & Mutianyu Weather Forecast – if high winds, heavy rain/snow, or low cloud are predicted, it is better to save your walk for a clearer day.

8 Tips For Your First Time Jiankou to Mutianyu Day Hike travel guide

5. Get Ready For A Workout.

Jiankou &  Mutianyu is a moderate hike. It’s suitable for all age groups with average fitness. However, the first hour of the hike toward Zhengbeilou tower is challenging. If you haven’t exercised in a while, take it slow.

On a hot summer day, weather conditions can make the hike a lot tougher than what you have expected. Go too fast, and you risk losing the energy (mental and physical) to make it to the top, better take it slow.

6. Save Lunch For Zhengbeilou Tower.

If you packed food, try and save it until you get to the top–Zhengbeilou tower. You will be rewarded with a spectacular panorama of Jiankou at Zhengbeilou. Even on a cloudy day, you get sweeping views of the West part of Jiankou, which makes your meal taste much better.

8 Tips For Your First Time Jiankou to Mutianyu Day Hike

7. Take It Slow Coming Down.

You might think coming down Mutianyu is the easiest part of the hike, but it is also very hard on your legs. The section between towers 19 and 20 in Mutianyu is 70 to 80 degrees in height with more than 440 vertical steps.

Your legs muscles are probably tired when you finish the Jiankou part, and it’s easy to let your mind wander and lose focus on the steps. You’re more likely to slip and fall coming down than going up. It’s advisable to take it slow coming down.

8. Have Fun.

Sometimes, hiking can feel like torture. If you find yourself cursing the trail, – stop, take a few breaths, and take your surroundings. You will be inspired and amazed at how people built such an unbelievable structure hundred of years ago. Listen to the silence of the mountains, and take time to sit on the edge of the wall. You’ll get many rewards along the way.

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What Is Beijing Famous For? A Top 6 List

Everything Beijing is Famous For, From Peking Duck to the Hutongs

What Is Beijing Famous For

Try to picture Beijing; what comes to mind? The word may bring up visions of traditional Chinese architecture, modern buildings bathed in neon lights at night, the 2008 summer Olympics, or one of the Wonders of the World. However, Beijing is also home to many other attractions. Foodies visiting the city need to try the many ways roast duck is prepared.

Art enthusiasts may want to investigate gorgeously detailed Cloisonne vases. Finally, everyone needs to experience Peking opera’s haunting melodies and striking visuals at least once in their lives. Here are the top six things that make Beijing famous for travelers across the world:

1. Beijing Is Famous For The Ancient Chinese Architecture

Beijing is steeped in history, and ancient Chinese architecture exists right alongside more modern buildings. Some of the most famous sites include:

  • The Great Wall of China, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, is a short tour bus ride away and a must-see for any visitor.
  • The fabulously wealthy dynasties that ruled China centuries ago left behind palaces such as the Forbidden City.
  • If you want to experience the beauty and tranquility of nature, drop by the Imperial Garden. This UNESCO Site dates back to the Qing dynasty, offering visitors numerous lakes, gardens, and trails.
  • Finally, look in awe at feats of ancient engineering like the Temple of Heaven, a complex that is bigger than the Forbidden City, or Tianning Temple, the tallest pagoda in the world that towers 13 stories high.

2. Beijing Is Famous For The Roast Duck

Peking Duck is world-famous, with restaurants around the globe featuring this elaborate dish as the star of their menu. It’s a city institution in Beijing, and many restaurants offer their unique spin on it. Be sure to book in advance as it takes hours to prepare.

What Is Beijing Famous For A Top 6 List

3. Beijing Is Famous For The Cloisonne

This enamel is a kind of copper craftwork. It first appeared in Beijing in the Yuan Dynasty and remains popular today. You can see examples of historic Cloisonne vases, cups, and more in museums throughout the city. You can also purchase modern Cloisonne items at art galleries and markets. Tourists who love this unique craftwork can tour Beijing’s Huairou Cloisonne Factory.

4. Beijing Is Famous For The Hutongs

Hutongs are Beijing’s traditional narrow streets and alleys. These offer you a hint of authentic Chinese culture and a taste of how the locals live. Venture down a Hutong on foot, and you’ll find something new around every corner.

5. Beijing Is Famous For The Peking Opera

This form of Chinese Opera is a feast for the senses. It combines many different styles of performance, including music, vocals, acrobatics, miming, and dance, all with incredible costumes and spectacular backdrops. No recording could capture even a fraction of the full experience; visitors who see the live shows understand why Peking Opera is world-famous.

6. Beijing Is Famous For The 2008 Summer Olympic Games

Beijing hosted the 2008 Summer Olympics, which turned athletes like Shawn Johnson and Michael Phelps into international superstars. The city still holds echoes of the Olympics, including unique buildings constructed for the event. Two of the most famous, the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube, look truly spectacular at night.

What Is Beijing Famous For A Top 6 List guide

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You Will Be Amazed By These Free Things To Do In Beijing

Explore Beijing Without Breaking the Bank – Visit Plenty of Places in Beijing For Free.

free things to do in Beijing

Beijing for free — is it even possible? Although I can’t help you with free accommodations, I can help you in the attractions department. There are plenty of free things to do in Beijing that won’t cost an arm and a leg.

Museums, activities, attractions, churches, and parks are numerous in this city, and although many cost a pretty penny, many do not. Here are several things you can do in Beijing without spending a dime.

Quick Tips-Free Things To Do In Beijing

  • Be a Tourist in Tiananmen Square
  • See the Body of Mao Zedong in Chairman Memorial Hall
  • Cool off around Houhai Lake
  • Lose Yourself in the 798 Art District
  • Explore Nanluoguxiang
  • Shop with the Locals on Wangfujing  Street
  • Look for Treasure in the Panjiayuan  Flea Market
  • Visit One of the Many Museums

Be a Tourist in Tiananmen Square

Tiananmen Square is arguably the world’s largest public square, with the Forbidden City to the north, the Zhangyangmen archery tower to the south, and the Chinese National Museum and the Great Hall of the People (China’s parliament) flanking the east and west, respectively.

See the Body of Mao Zedong in Chairman Memorial Hall

There are usually long lines to see Mao Zedong in the mausoleum and be aware that certain items are not allowed when you enter the mausoleum.

Because cameras and bags aren’t allowed inside the hall, you need to store your possessions in lockers east of the mausoleum, which does cost a small fee, depending on the locker rented. Do not pay “helpers” to store your possessions as they will overcharge.

Cool off around Houhai Lake

Houhai Lake means “Back Lakes.” You’ll be impressed by the older neighborhoods, which are lovingly preserved. There are boutiques, restaurants, shops, and street vendors here—a popular place to hang out at night.

You Will Be Amazed By These Free Things To Do In Beijing

Lose Yourself in the 798 Art District

Once a factory compound, 798 art district has been revitalized and converted to house galleries, cafes, and bookshops. You’ll be impressed by contemporary Chinese art.

Explore Nanluoguxiang (Hutong)

The Nanluoguxiang neighborhood takes its name from a narrow alley that still exists even though it was built during the Yuan Dynasty. It is part of the older sections of Beijing’s city center. It is a popular place for tourists as it has bars, restaurants, live music houses, fast food, coffee shops, and souvenir shops.

Shop with the Locals on Wangfujing  Street

If you’re looking for a place to shop, check out Wangfujing Street, which has had commerce as far back as the Ming Dynasty. There are 280 Beijing brands within the stores, which makes it popular with residents and tourists. The restaurants and food vendor stalls are often packed.

Look for Treasure in the Panjiayuan  Flea Market

Also known as the Beijing Antique Market or the Dirt Market, this is the largest market of its kind taking up 48,500 square meters. The market is so big that it is subdivided into several parts.

The primary market, known as the Middle Area, is only open on weekends, but you’ll see a lot even if you go on a weekday. There are 4000 shops and 10,000 dealers there.

Visit One of the Many Museums

Most museums in Beijing are free, but you’ll want a guide to show you around. The fees, however, are small. Museums include the Beijing Museum of Natural History, Capital Museum, Military Museum of the Chinese People’s Revolution, and the National Museum of China.

The National Museum of China has large-scale exhibitions covering everything from currency to painted porcelain. Visitors also enjoy the Beijing Museum of Natural History and the Beijing Theater Museum.


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6 Movies to Watch Before Your First Trip to China

6 Must-See Movies When Going to China

6 Movies to Watch Before Your First Trip to China

Get out the popcorn and start up one of these great movies based on China and Chinese culture throughout the centuries. Watch a few films to inspire you for your trip to the Great Wall of China in Beijing. Then you will be one step closer to experiencing what the Wild Great Wall has in store for you on your upcoming adventure.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

The Ang Lee film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, earned more than 40 awards worldwide. This Chinese movie portrays martial arts in China in one of the most monumental ways.

Step back to 18th century China and meet the Green Destiny as you see Beijing and other Chinese provinces in cinematic glory.

The Last Emperor

Directed by Bernando Bertolucci in 1987, The Last Emperor was even more successful at the box office with 49 award wins. The film stars John Lone, Joan Chen, Peter O’Toole, and a whole cast of other famous Chinese actors and actresses.

Discover the history of Pu-Yi, the last emperor, as he becomes a war criminal of the Red Army, and his entire world is tossed upside down.

Beijing Bicycle

Translated as a 17-year-old’ss bicycle from Shi Qi Sui de Danche, Beijing Bicycle is a film released in 2001 banned in Mainland China. The movie touches on several key social issues, including youth delinquency, socio-economic class divisions, and social change.

Premiering at the Berlin International Film Festival, the movie was well-received and won the Jury Grand Prix award.

Let the Bullets Fly

Want to spend some time watching comedy gold? Check out Let the Bullets Fly or Rang zi dan fei. Based in China in the 1920s, the movie uses extreme gastronomy and slapstick comedy to create a box office shattering success.

The film, released in 2012, earned $117.5 million at the Chinese box office alone. The movie was the highest-grossing film in the country until 2012, when it was unseated from the throne by Painted Skin: The Resurrection.

Red Cliff

A John Woo film, Red Clifftranslated from Chibi, is an epic war film based on the Three Kingdoms period in China. Please note that the film is only about 50 percent factual, according to the director. That being said, you see some of the most climactic scenes of any war movie.

There are even elaborate tea ceremonies and tiger hunting, the latter of which is a scene not released in the American English version. However, if you watch the American version, you get to learn more about the film’s historical background.

Raise the Red Lantern

Raise the Red Lantern is a film released in 1991 that takes you inside the Chinese household. In the movie, a young woman marries a wealthy lord only to be forced to learn new ways of social life.

The movie is based on the novel”“Wives and Concubine”” by Su Tong, which discusses the concubine system of China in the 1930s.


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Top 5 Tourist Traps to Avoid in Beijing

Use Our Guide to Avoid the Worst and See the Best of Beijing

Top 5 Tourist Traps to Avoid in Beijing trip

Being suckered into a tourist trap is always such an awful feeling because you just wasted your precious time, and money, on something overpriced and not that enjoyable. And when you’re on vacation, time and money are two things that can be in very short supply. Here are 5 of the most prominent tourist traps you’ll want to avoid for a more authentic Beijing holiday.

5. The “Art Student” Scam

China has a booming art scene that celebrates historic beauty and modern techniques. This makes it an excellent destination for art enthusiasts but beware. When you’re in the art district, near historical sites, or at public transport hubs, you may be approached by a young, well-dressed person claiming to be an ”rt student. They will offer to take you to a free art show. Go with them, and you may find yourself in an ”rt shop overflowing with a wide variety of mass-produced items at high price tags. If some of these items appeal to you, you can find identical pieces at inexpensive street markets. Your best response is to say ”to the ”rt student.”4. The Counterfeit Chinese Money Scam

If you plan to rely on taxis to get around Beijing, stay alert for this scam. Here, you may pay your taxi driver with, say, a 100 RMB note. An unscrupulous taxi driver will secretly switch it with counterfeit currency and accuse you of passing him fake money. Your best bet to prevent this is to observe as you pay. Be aware that the police may not be able to do much when it is your word against the driver’s

3. The Tea House Scam

Here, an attractive young lady or friendly college student invites their tourist-target to a tea house. Once there, you’ll find yourself faced with one expense after another. That cup of tea you thought you bought for a reasonable amount? The price tag was actually for a small ”taste” of it, and the entire cup will be costly indeed. These places may also tack on numerous other fees. The scam is mainly seen in big cities, and your best bet is to say ”o, thanks.”

2. The Black Taxi Scam

In Beijing, reputable taxi drivers will use their meters. However, you may run across ”lack,” illegal taxis. Instead, these don’t use their meter and find every way possible to increase your bill, including charging you tax. In the worst cases, these taxi drivers may stop in the middle of nowhere and threaten to abandon you unless you pay them extra. Avoid this scam by sticking with reputable metered taxis. Follow the signs if you’re at the airport or major travel hubs. Also, make sure that the driver puts down the meter flag.

1. The ”oo Good To Be True”Tour Scam

You may be bombarded by touts offering extremely low-priced tours to the Great Wall or other famous sights when you get to Beijing. Unfortunately, these dirt-cheap excursions come with a hidden cost. You may find yourself in an unhygienic bus, taking a tour of all the expensive tourist traps in the area. It may take hours to run the gauntlet before you’re taken to the main attraction.

Overall, Beijing is full of locals who are genuinely happy to accommodate you during your stay. TThat’sprobably why so many visitors keep coming back.

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