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72 Hours in Central Beijing China

Updated: May 4

We had visited the Great Wall of China the day before, but today is our big tour around the city!

Heading to Yonghegong Lama Temple (Line 5 on the subway) it can be a little confusing with the signage. When coming out of the subway if you get off at the Lama Temple station, follow signs for the Lama Temple exit, you should be standing with your back to it when you exit the subway, in other words, the subway drives right under the temple. It is a fairly long building and you will walk about 1km to the entrance which is quite grand, but also not labelled too well. There are some signs that are pointing to the Confusious Temple, do not follow those signs!

Once through security and inside, you can wander through the garden and into the temple.

The temple was originally built as an imperial palace and was later converted into the Tibetan Buddhist temple. It is the largest Tibetan Buddhist Temple.

Unfortunately you are not allowed to take photos in certain areas of the temple but here is a little snippet of what could be captured!

Next let’s head to Beijing Olympic Park. There are two subway stations that you can get off at Olympic Sports Park (Line 8) and Olympic Green (Line 8 & Line15), both will get you there. But if you’re coming from Lama Temple it’s simple to take Line 2 than transfer to go North on Line 5 and get off at Olympic Sports Park. If you would just like to take a walk around you can enter without a ticket but if you would like to take part in anything further you need to purchase a ticket before entering at the ticket booth. Once you get your bags checked and you enter the Olympic Park you will see Beijing Bird’s Nest to the right and the Shimmer Aquatic Center to the left.

If you walk North through the park you can catch the subway train from Olympic Green to Line 15 than transfer at Datunld East to head South transfer to Line 1. You can get off at Tian’anmen West Station which in total only costs RMB6 ($1.17CAD).

Once you head out the security gate you can start heading towards a big red building on the left hand side which is the one and only Forbidden City! To enter you do need to purchase tickets and go through security but once you’ve done that you’re on your way inside! After serving as an imperial palace for 500 years, in 1925 the Forbidden City became a museum called the Palace Museum. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.

The best way to end the day is by watching the sun set over the walls of the forbidden city. Once you’ve experienced that stunning view head back to where you’re staying and hit the streets for some food! Hot Pot is always a good choice as it is a Chinese soup containing a variety of East Asian food. You choose your food and you cook the ingredients right there at the table. While cooking the food make sure to munch on a Bibimbap dish (a cast iron or stone bowl filled with ingredients similar to a salad usually with an egg and topped with seaweed). This kind of restaurant is a little more expensive in China as you are supposed to order about 4 dishes for two people which costs about RMB75-80. To see the streets, malls, shopping, Beijing at night, and my overall opinion of Beijing, click the video below!

Happy Adventuring!
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