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8 days in Beijing in early December

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8 days in Beijing in early December

Hi, first time traveler to China. I will be meeting a Chinese friend, staying at a place in Beijing. My question is basic: in early/mid December, what is there to do in Beijing? I'm planning the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, but what else? The stuff in "3 days in Beijing" travel guide looks like designed for better weather than I expect. Thoughts? Ideas are MUCH appreciated to make my first visit to China a memorable one. I'm sure I'll love it no matter what, but I hate to miss something awesome out of ignorance. Nothing is too obvious, I'm open to all ideas. In fact, the more "obvious" the better! Thanks

Kingston, Canada
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11. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Oh and you must go to the Wang Fu Jing Snack Food Street at night…if you have a strong stomach!!! Check with the locals to make sure it's open! Westerners call it the Dark Market.

Melbourne, Australia
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12. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Actually December is an okay time to visit. Wear layers, thermals & you will be fine. The main tourist sites wont be as busy which is a huge plus. Very slim chance of snow and high probability of blue sky :-)

The main places to see in Beijing all tend to be outside - Forbidden City, T Square, Great Wall, Temple Of Heaven, Summer Palace, Lama Temple, Hutong Walks, HouiHai Lake area etc.

Make sure you see the Drum Tower which sometimes gets missed off peoples lists - Time it to see the Drumming performance and the views from the top are very good. At the back of the Drum Tower is the Bell Tower and around that area are some cafes if you want a coffee to warm up.

A great way to explore Beijing is choose a small area & do it by foot, you see so much more & because you are walking you will warm up. If the wind is blowing a bit buy one of the small face masks to use over the lower part of your face. Even tho its winter, there is still plenty to see. If the Houhai / Qianhai lakes are frozen over while you are there & the moat around the Forbidden City its pretty to see.

A tip for the Great Wall in winter is that you dont have to get there early compared to the more popular times of year. December last year & the year before were quiet on the Mutianyu part of the wall & it will be the same for the other parts. I went mid & late morning in both years & there were no crowds. Its actually better to go a bit later in winter as the wall can be a bit slippery with black ice in some parts ( gives it a chance to melt).

Melbourne, Australia
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13. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Opps forgot to mention the 798 Art District.

How many days in Beijing do you have ? The 798 Art District would be worth visiting if you like art & have the time. There are lots of various galleries and they are mostly inside. Its a huge complex & also has shops, bistros, bars & cafes. Some of the galleries can be closed on Mondays so its best not to go then.

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14. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Thanks, I'll make a note of that. Trying not to be a smartass, but did you seriously just ask how long I'm planning to be in Beijing? LOL I'll be there, um, about 8 days. :-)

la
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15. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Take it all in, just returned from my first visit to beijing.. so many questions but what an interesting place to visit. The wall was my favorite..,

Melbourne, Australia
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16. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

LOL. Wake up Annie. Doh, I just read the title of your post - Clearly says 8 days ( in Neon flashing lights) :-)))))

Sherbrooke, Canada
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17. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Remember that the Forbidden city now closes on Mondays.

Mountain View...
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18. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Good info. Thank for the review. I will be going on Dec 2013

Beijing, China
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19. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

Please don't forget watching shows in Beijing which are quite popular home and abroad.

Stay away from the young girls practicing English, as well as art students, sometimes you will end up in a teahouse.

Enjoy your trip in Beijing!

Beijing, China
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20. Re: 8 days in Beijing in early December

there are lots of sites that you can go around the early Dec, the great wall sections, I would suggest you to go over to MutianYu site, a reminder for you , please do not purchase any souvenirs from the great wall. other sites like Alley Ways , food street like that. Please feel comfortable to let me know if you have more questions.

Blessings

Immanuel