Something to share in every single week throughout the year

Week 11 – Five Days Trip in Beijing (3/3)


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Hotel Kapok Beijing is a boutique hotel located near the Forbidden City. When you leave the hotel, turn left and go straight. It takes you about 10 minutes of walk to get to the East Gate of the Forbidden City. However, visitors are not allowed to get in the site through East Gate, visitors need to follow the path to the ticket office which is located at the main entrance of the Forbidden City. You will find that not only the location of the hotel is great, but the price and the service are great as well. The hotel room is very clean (really clean, I mean it), modern and comfortable. There are free drinks placed on the tea table to welcome visitors as well. Also, the staffs are quite helpful and friendly. They always wear a warm smile on the face. It cost only RMB$600.00 per night during Spring Festival.

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Behind us is the east side of the Forbidden City. Walking on the sidewalk, you can see some people selling souvenirs for RMB$2.00 or $3.00.


The day that we successfully got in the Forbidden City was the 6th day of Chinese New Year. Comparing it to the day that we attempted to visit Forbidden City, at the 4th day of Chinese New Year, fewer people were queuing for tickets in that morning. So, we were able to get in easily and more quickly.

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I was lucky that I was able to have a picture of myself in the frame alone without anyone joining me in the photo.

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In this picture, you can see visitors were heading to the doorway to take a look at some precious items displaying inside the hall.

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Behind me, it is one of the two biggest clocks displaying in the Clock and Watch Exhibition Hall. It is a Chime Clock, and it was made during the Qing Dynasty by the royal clockmakers.

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Most of the watches and mocks are mostly made in Switzerland, England, France, the United States and Japan. Also, there are some Chinese made timepieces on the display. To enter the Clock and Watch Exhibition Hall, you have to pay an extra fee which cost RMB$10.00/per person.

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This is the picture which was taken after we left the site and looked back at the outside wall of the Forbidden City. It was already 1 o’clock in the afternoon. We spent nearly 2 hours and half in the Forbidden City only for a rough visit. If you are a person who enjoys looking at details, the time you need for visit would be a bit longer.

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This photo shows that the Samadhi Vegetarian Restaurant and Teahouse, located at the 2nd floor of Shifanghaoting, no. 16 Xinyuan Nanlu, is closed during Spring Festival. We came to the restaurant by a taxi, 20 minutes of drive, and it cost us RMB$100.00. We thought that taking a taxi would get us faster to the destination than taking a subway train, as the time required to walk to the subway station, wait for the train, change line and walk all the way to the restaurant, would at least takes 1 hour.

The restaurant is closed. We had to look for another place for lunch.

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About 5 minutes of walk, we found a small restaurant serving noodles.

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The closest subway station of this area is Liangmaqiao Station (subway line number 10).

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We took subway train and got off at Yonghegong Station (subway line number 2), and went to the Wudaoying Hutong.

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I like this place as it has more old and traditional Chinese houses.

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The warm light hitting the surface of the houses made the atmosphere here more interesting and nostalgic.

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I wish those flowers were fresh flowers.

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I find it funny. Can you read that?

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“Must Wear Defense Mask” (if you need to go inside the toilet)

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This is the street which leads you to the entrance of Imperial College. We were late. It is closed when we arrived.


There is a nice vegetarian restaurant located not far away from the Chongwenmen Station. Even if you never want to be a vegetarian, the restaurant, Gongdelin, will definitely add good impressions to your trip in Beijing.

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This little map shows the fastest walking route from Chongwenmen Station to Gongdelin Vegetarian Restaurant (功德林). It takes only 10 minutes of walk. Walking distance is only 500 mm.

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This is Lo Han Zhai that we ordered (羅漢齋).

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This is sweet and sour pork (酸甜骨).

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Yam with blueberry juice (山藥配藍莓汁).


Coconut milk pumpkin cakes (椰奶南瓜糕).

It cost an average RMB$100.00 per person.
After dinner, we took subway train and got off at Qianmen Station to Da Shan Lan Street.

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Da Shan Lan Street (大栅欄) is a shopping street surrounded by famous traditional Chinese stores and old buildings. I visited Da Shan Lan Street in the evening. The atmosphere created by the street lights and the surrounded old buildings is magical. Walking on the street, it is like travel back in time to the old Beijing in the period of more than three centuries ago.

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The theatre.

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You can find souvenirs here with reasonable price.

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Travel Tip: By subway, go to Qianmen Station via subway line number 2 (RMB$2.00), exit C, walk to the bus parking area, then follow the sign post on the street to “大栅欄”. Located not far away from the subway station, it takes about 5 to 10 minutes of walk to the destination.


Got up early in the morning, checked-out the hotel and walked to the nearest subway station to catch a subway train to the airport.

Travel tip: Subway line number 1, then transfer at Jianguomen Station, get off at Dongzhimen Station. After that, you can see the airport express train station to Terminal 2 and 3.

Subway train fee: RMB$2.00/per person
Airport express fee: RMB$25.00/per person

– The End –

Camera: Iphone 4S + Canon 500D

31 responses

  1. Great pictures! In the picture Outside the Forbidden City, is that water?

    Looks like a fun trip. thanks for bringing us along.

    March 16, 2013 at 11:23 am

    • Glad that you like it! 😀
      It was so cold and the water became frozen.

      March 16, 2013 at 6:02 pm

  2. I wonder why you aren’t allowed to go through east gate, Is it because of traditional reasons or is there just nobody guarding there? great photos! oh by the way the yam with blueberry looks really interesting 🙂

    March 16, 2013 at 11:49 am

    • Yea, the yam with blueberry is really tasty!!! 😀 It tastes like sweet yogurt ice cream.
      There were guards guarding the East Gate and told us to get in through the main gate 😀

      March 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm

      • mmmm! Now I really gotta find out why I can’t go in through the east lol 😉

        March 17, 2013 at 12:28 am

  3. Wonderful trip, Cristina. I’ve always been very curious about China; it has so much depth of culture and history..!
    Loved all your pics… That was very fortunate to get an image with just ‘you’ in it. It also looks very cold.. you and your partner seem very rugged up..! I had to laugh at the wearing of a mask in the public toilets; it seems extreme, and quite funny…
    All in all, Cristina I really enjoyed your trip with you..
    Oh yes; the food looks glorious, except the coconut milk pumpkin cakes may take a bit of getting used to.. haha..
    Loved it..! 🙂

    March 16, 2013 at 2:54 pm

    • 😀 Thank you, Carolyn. I’m happy that you enjoy the trip with me 😀
      Haha. The face mask is a must-need-item to get inside the public toilets. Without it, I think I won’t be able to get outside 😀
      I really have to say that the food in Gundelin is very tasty. The yam with blueberry is the most delicious. 😀

      March 16, 2013 at 6:18 pm

  4. All the food look very delicious. My family and I like Chinese food.
    The golden clock is so gorgeous. 🙂

    March 16, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    • The clock is quite tall. I prefer smaller clock. 😀

      March 22, 2013 at 2:22 pm

  5. Wonderful pictures and information, Christina. I’ve shared you wonderful trip on my facebook page!

    March 16, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    • That is sweet. I’m glad that you like the post. 😀

      March 22, 2013 at 2:23 pm

  6. Love the trip through this city that has much to offer. I hope the air gets better there soon!

    March 16, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    • If there is no air pollution, Beijing will be a very good place to visit. 😀
      I think I won’t go there again unlessl it gets better.

      March 22, 2013 at 2:27 pm

      • I’ve got the feeling it may be a while.

        March 23, 2013 at 4:43 am

      • Yea yea. I’ve just checked. Today’s air quality is still unhealthy 😀

        March 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm

  7. Hahaha pretty hilarious seeing that sign in front of a toilet. 😛

    March 16, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    • HeeHee I can’t get in without the mask 😛

      March 22, 2013 at 2:28 pm

  8. Hello, Christina. Lovely trip. China is one Asian country I have yet to visit. Looks like your trip was a great experience. The food looks good too. The yam with blueberry sauce looks refreshing.

    The architecture must have been very interesting to admire. I wonder, does the train system work efficiently? It looks like it’s still cold during your visit.

    March 16, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    • The train system works very well! It is quite cheap. It colst only RMB$2 to travel to any metro station. There are many lines, most of them can get to most popular tourist attractions. But the signs and maps located in the metro station still need some improvements. Also, I hate crowded. I was pushed by crowds when getting in the train in Badaling Station. That was awfull.

      It was cold during my visit. The air quality is not good as well. I hope it gets better and better.

      March 22, 2013 at 2:46 pm

  9. Reblogged this on My story to you.. and commented:
    I’ve never been to this amazing place yet but am hoping! 🙂

    March 17, 2013 at 12:28 am

    • Beijing is a nice place to visit. Just avoid the air pollution and crowds, you will have a wonderful trip in Beijing.

      March 22, 2013 at 2:47 pm

      • Air pollution has reached that bad huh? do most people there wear masks there? imagine if the mainland was to make a law that only foot traffic and bikes were allowed to be used, wow what a difference it would make 🙂

        March 23, 2013 at 2:19 am

      • I didn’t see local people wear mask. Only few tourists do so 😀
        Maybe they used to it.

        March 23, 2013 at 5:22 pm

  10. Looks like you covered a lot of ground. The defense mask could come in handy in any part of the world. It’s nice that you were warned. 🙂

    March 18, 2013 at 7:18 am

    • I can’t put away my mask, especially inside the toilets. With the mask, I can fool myself that toilets are clean and with no odors. 😀

      March 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm

  11. Hahaha I always wear my defensive mask when I go in the toilet.

    Those noodles look yummy!
    …and so do the pumpkin milk cakes!
    … and so does everything else!

    I kinda like the atmosphere you portray in Beijing. It looks very calm and quant! 🙂

    Btw, why do they call it ‘the Forbidden City?’

    March 18, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    • I’m not sure why it has this kind of name. Maybe in the past, the city was forbidden to ordinary people. ^^ Today, it is not forbidden anymore…

      March 22, 2013 at 3:58 pm

  12. Amazing photographs, Cristina! SO very cool!
    I’m happy you were eventually able to visit the Forbidden City – I’m sure it would have been very disappointing to be that close and not get in!

    March 18, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    • It was lucky that I was able to get in the Forbidden City 😀
      It is worth a visit, but I’m sure I won’t visit it again, as it is very crowded.

      March 22, 2013 at 3:44 pm

  13. ––––๖ۣۜBơ–

    Wow! So beautiful. I like food. Look so delicious.

    March 22, 2013 at 12:13 pm

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