Beijing is the capital city of the People’s Republic of China. It is the nation's political and cultural center and also a center for international contacts. With an area of 16808 square kilometers, Beijing is located in the northern part of the North China Plain and its terrain is high in the northwest and low in the southeast.
Population and Race
Beijing has a population of 14.93 million people. The majority are Han race. The other ethic minorities like Manchu, Hui and Mongal also form an important part of the population in Beijing. As a important international city, Beijing also is a home of large number of foreign persons.
Geography of Beijing
Beijing, known as the capital of China, is located at the northern tip of North China Plain, with Tianjin City on its southern border and Hebei Province on its other three borders. The city covers an area of more than 16,410 square meters, mainly characterized by plain. Hills stand on its north northwest and west and two major rivers – Yongding River and Chaobai River float through the city, making the monotonous geography more beautiful.
Climate and Beijing Weather
The climate in Beijing features continental monsoon with hot wet summers and cold dry winters. Summers last from June to August and are subject to frequent rain.
The hottest month is July with an average temperature 26.1℃ and the coldest month is January at an average temperature of -4.6℃.
Spring, between February and April, is relatively short and characterized by warm and windy condition.
Autumn, between August and October, brings pleasantly mild temperature and slight humidity.
History of Beijing
Beijing is a city with a rather long history. In the last 1,000 years, it has been China's political and cultural center. Beijing was established as the secondary capital of the Liao Kingdom (916-1125) in 938.
In the Jin Kingdom (1115-1234) in 1151, Beijing began to serve as the central capital. After the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) was founded, Beijing was made by Kublai Khan in 1263 the winter capital and a grand metropolitan city, which became the center of international cultural exchanges in the Orient. The foundation of the layout of present Beijing was laid in 1404, when the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) decided to move the capital from Nanjing to Beijing and started a large-scale construction. Many of the ancient palace buildings, temple structures and gardens that are still visible today can be traced back to this period or later. The succeeded Qing Dynasty developed the civilization and made the city become even more prosperous.
Beijing Tour Photo
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Private tour , Great
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Best Travel Season
Generally, summer (June to August) and autumn (September to November) are the best travel season. In summer, the number of travelers reaches the peak; the only problem may be the hot weather. Autumn has the mild temperature and is agreeable. Many tourists avoid the Spring because of the unpleasant sandstorms. Winter is cold and dry, but you can enjoy considerable discount while reserving a hotel.
Beijing Capital International Airport is the largest airport in China. It is not only a hub center for China civil aviation network but also an aviation gateway of Beijing and a window for international communication. The airport operates flights linking Beijing with 88 cities in China and 69 cities abroad.
Train from Beijing almost radiate all the parts of China and are generally cheap, safe and well maintained. There are four types of cabin on the train: hard seat, soft seat (only on short-distance trains), hard sleeper and soft sleeper.
The new train headed with Z is the top class. For example, the train Z19 between Beijing and Xian is a good choice when you take a Beijing Xian tour.
Bus: Public bus and trolley bus are efficient, economical. Some bus is overfull during the rush hours. There is a kind of new tour buses. All of them are beginning with “tour”. These buses running between downtown and attractions in suburbs.
At present, there are eight subway lines in Beijing. They are respectively called Line 1 (Tian’an men Square is one of stops), Line 2 (round line), Line 5, Line 10, Batong Line (to the Tong County), Olympic Spur Line and Airport Line.
Taxies are easily available and affordable for travelers. They can be recognized quite simple: they are marked with “Taxi” on the top.
Beijing Capital International Airport: located 20 km to the northeast of Beijing city center.
Beijing West Railway Station: located in western Beijing's Xuanwu District; one of the largest railway station in Asia.
Beijing Railway Station: located next to Jianguomen; within 2nd Ring Road.
Beijing South Railway Station: the largest one in Asia, located on the south side of Beijing.
University in Beijing
As the culture center of China, there are at least 59 universities or colleges in Beijing, most of which are state-owned of affiliated, only a few are private established.
• Tsinghua University (清华大学)
• Peking University (北京大学)
• Renmin University of China (中国人民大学)
• Beijing Normal University (北京师范大学)
• Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics (北京航空航天大学)
• Beijing Institute of Technology (北京理工大学)
• Beijing Foreign Studies University (北京外国语大学)
• Beijing International Studies University (北京第二外国语大学)
• Central University of Finance and Economics (中央财经大学)
• Beijing Forestry University (北京林业大学)
• Beijing University of Technology (北京工业大学)
• Beijing Language and Culture University (北京语言大学)
• Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications (北京邮电大学)
• Communication University of China (中国传媒大学)
• Beijing Jiaotong University (北京交通大学)
• Beijing Film Academy (北京电影学院)
• Beijing University of Chemical Technology (北京化工大学)
• Beijing University of Chinese Medicine (北京中医药大学)
• Beijing University of Petroleum (北京石油大学)
• Beijing University of Technology (北京工业大学)
• Capital Normal University (首都师范大学)
• Central Academy of Drama (中央戏剧学院)
• Central Academy of Fine Arts (中央美术学院)
• Central Conservatory of Music (中央音乐学院)
• Central University for Nationalities (中央民族大学)
• China Agricultural University (中国农业大学)
• China Conservatory of Music (中国音乐学院)
• China University of Political Science and Law (中国政法大学)
• North China Electric Power University (华北电力大学)
• University of International Business and Economics (对外经济贸易大学)
• University of International Relations (国际关系学院)
• University of Science and Technology Beijing (北京科技大学)
Food and Beverage
Exhibition Center and Conference Center
For centuries, Beijing worked as the Chinese capital, where numerous talent chefs gathered from different city of China. So Beijing cuisine has been influenced by other culinary traditions, especially from Shandong Province.
Beijing Roast Duck
Beijing Roast Duck has enjoys the fine reputation for nearly 150 years. This dish is prized for thin, crisp skin and tender, succulent meat. While traveling in Beijing, people often heard there are two things one must do: taste the Beijing Roast Duck and climb the Great Wall. Quanjude and Bianyifang are the most famous restaurants for producing this delicious dish.
Beijing Imperial Court Food
Imperial Court Food is the foundation of Beijing Cuisine, characterized by complex preparation techniques, the freshest ingredients and elaborate presentation including colorful vegetable carving. Imperial cuisine is divided into imperial court cuisine and imperial office cuisine.
Imperial Court Cuisine has its origins in the imperial palace, based on the foods that were served to emperors and the court. Fang Shan in Beihai Park and Ting Li Guan in the Summer Palace are the best restaurants to enjoy the cuisine.
The most famous type of imperial office cuisine is Tan Family Food, loved by Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911) official Tan Zongling. This cuisine is available in the Beijing Hotels. Another type of food originates from the classic novel, Dream of Red Mansions, which is described by the author Cao Xueqin. Beijing Grand View Garden Hotel next to the Beijing Grand View Garden is the best known place to serve this style of dish. The hotel is modeled after the garden described in the Dream of Red Mansion. Besides, Jinglun Hotel and Lajingyuyuan Restaurant in Zhongshan Park also feature this cuisine.
Hot Pot is another favorite food in Beijing, especially in cold winter. Generally there are two kinds of Hot Pot: Mongolia flavor and Sichuan flavor. The basic ingredients include meat and fresh vegetables. The slices of different meats are dipped in boiling water with various kinds of vegetables until they are done, and then eaten with special sauces and side dishes.
Beijing snacks combine varied flavors from different nationalities including Han, Hui, Meng, Man and court from Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties, forming their own characteristic. It is said there are about 200 snacks and snack restaurants can be found all over the city.
Local Product & Shopping Area
Today, there are many famous shopping streets in Beijing, featured modern malls and boutiques or special articles shops. The best known are Wangfujing, Dongdanbei, Longfusi, Xiandanbei, Qianmen, Xiushui Street, Liulichang Culture Street.
With a long history of more than 700 years, Wangfujing Street is the most famous commercial area of Beijing. The street is rich in Chinese style, but overflows modern atmosphere. Many time-honored stores with traditional commodities and world –famous brands converge here. You can find everything you want, from unique souvenirs to fashionable articles, from delicate foods to various books. Wangfujing Street enjoys the fame of the sister street of Champs Elysees in France.
Qianmen Street is a famous ancient shopping street, just located in the south of Tian’anmen Square. 500 years ago, it was the commercial center of Beijing. Now the street has been remedied according to the architecture style of Ming and Qing dynasties. The old and famous shop such as Quanjude, Pianyifang, Douyichu are telling the long history and the traditional culture of Beijing.
Xidan Commercial Street
Xidan Commercial Street id regarded as the second Wangfujing, just lying 2 kilometers west of Tian’anmen Square. In the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the street was an flourishing commercial Center in the western part of Beijing City. It is an international, modern, commercial combination of shopping, dining, recreation and culture.
From the description that Silk Street is ”the third best-known tourist destination in Beijing after the Palace Museum and the Great Wall”, we can see that Silk Street is very popular with foreign tourists. Debuted on March, 2005 and replacing the old alley based Xiushui Market, the current Silk Street establishment has diversified their business scope. It is really a shopping paradise. Fashion apparels, fine jewelry, traditional handicrafts, antiques, calligraphy, paintings, hand-knit dresses are for your choice. On the third floor is a silk museum. Reputable traditional shops such as Ruifuxiang, Shengxifu and Neiliansheng are located here, serving high quality silk.
Located just to the east of Temple of Heaven, Hongqiao Market is also pearl market. Every year, the market absorbs 1,000,000 visitors to buy pears. In addition to pearls, it also stocks seafood, digital products and silk.
Liulichang Culture Street
Situated in the southwest of Qianmen, Liulichang Culture Street was the artistic center of Beijing where scholars and poets gathered together during the Ming and Qing Dynasties. After renovation during 1980's, it presents the appearance of authentic Qing Dynasty Market. The 750-meter street is sided by many famous stores, of which the most famous are China Bookstore, Rongbaozhai and Jiguge. Calligraphy, art, antiques and paintings are popular items.
Beijing International Convention Center.
8 Beichen Donglu Tel:84973060
Beijing International Exhibition Center
6 Beisanhuan Donglu Tel:8460-1800
Exhibition Hall At China World Trade Center
1 Jianguomenwai Dajie Tel:6505-3832
Agricultural Exhibition Center
16 Dongsanhuan Beilu,Chaoyang District,Beijing Tel:0086-10-65018877
The Convention and Exhibition Center
Jiuhua Spa&Resort,Xiaotangshan,Changping Tel:6178-2288
China International Exhibition Center Group Corporation
6 East Beisanhuan Road,Chaoyang District,Beijing Tel:010-8460 0223
Agricultural Exhibition Center
16 Dongsanhuan Beilu,Chaoyang District,Beijing Tel:0086-10-65018877
Beijing Exhibition Center
135 Xizhimenwai Dajie, Xuanwu District Tel:6831-6677
China Hall of Science & Technology Center
No.3 FuXing Road,Beijing,China Tel:6851-8822
The Great Hall of the People
West side of Tiananmen Square Tel:6605-6847
Grand Epoch City
China International Conference Center for Science and Technology
86 Xueyuan Nan Lu, Beijing Tel:6217-4951
Compared to the daytime, the vibrancy of Beijing at night never falls off. Colorful traditional performances evoke you the sentiments of old Beijing, such as Beijing Opera, acrobatic shows and martial art. If you would like to be an old Beijinger, Tianqiao Area is the right place you are supposed to visit. The area is frequented by ordinary folk since the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). Naturally it became the cradle of Chinese folk culture and art where many original folk performances such as acrobatics and music were devised. Today the two famous venues are Tianqiaole Tea House and Tianqiao Theater. The teahouse inherits the tradition, performing Beijing Opera, Acrobatics, Martial Arts and fold songs. By contrast to the teahouse, Tianqiaole Theater features modern songs and dance performances. Laoshe Tea House and Liyuan Theater are also the good choice to explore Chinese folk culture. Laoshe Teahouse is the ideal place to experience the famous Chinese tea culture. In Liyuan Theater, authentic Beijing Opera and other folk performances are presented. Also as the modern metropolis, Beijing also has lots of pubs, clubs and cafes.
In 1949, Beijing became the capital of the new China. When the great leader “Mao Zedong” announced the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Beijing and the whole China came to a grand new period. Since the founding of the PRC, particularly since China initiated the reform and open policy in 1978, the economy of Beijing has kept its momentum of sustained, rapid and healthy development. Since the beginning of the 1990s, the gross domestic product (GDP) of the city has been growing at an annual rate of 9%, with the comprehensive economic strength increased substantially. Beijing has established an economy comprising multi-sectors, which include State-run and collectively owned enterprises and also consist of Sino-foreign joint ventures, Sino-foreign cooperative ventures and wholly foreign-funded enterprises as well as individual businesses, etc.
Nowadays, with highly developed economy, Beijing is gradually developing as an international city with modern facilities and convenient traffic lines. As the hosting city of 2008 Olympic games, Beijing is becoming a better place under the efforts of the government and all the residents here. It is a charming city, which will surely attract more people around the world. Under the Olympic motto “one world, one dream”, the city Beijing opens widely to the outside world and the world will know better about Beijing in the future.