Before I went to Beijing, I bought a map with street names, sights etc. written both in Chinese and in English.
If you are going to explore the city and visit some of the sights, it's important to have the name written in Chinese. Most people don't speak English at all.
Tian Tan (Temple of Heaven)
Temple of Heaven was completed in the 18th year (1420) of the Ming Emperor. It is the largest existing temple complex in China. It used to be the place where the emperors prayed to the Heaven for a good harvest. Its main structures are two groups of buildings on a north-south axis, and connected by a walk thirty meters wide and raided four meters above the ground. The main buildings include the hall of Prayer for Good Harvest, the Imperial Vault for Heaven, and Circular Mount Altar.
Beijing Tourist Kit
In summer the climate can be very very warm and humid, so pack light...
In the winter it can be very chilly (I have experienced around -10C)... so pack your pullovers and heavy coats (or buy them in Beijing) :-) Bring your medical supplies since in China there are not so many western drugstores. For sure....
Beijing's traditional courtyards (siheyuan) still house many of the city's residents within the second ring road, which marks the limits of old Beijing. Siheyuan line the small lanes, or hutongs, that make up most of the central part of the city. However, many of the siheyuan, which consist of four rooms around a central yard, are being torn down at present, and quite a large proportion of those who have enjoyed courtyard living for generations have now moved to high-rise blocks of flats in new residential areas.
The siheyuan is a typical form of ancient Chinese architecture, especially in the north of China. They are designed to make it as comfortable as possible to live in a climate that is at times inhospitable. For instance, the siheyuan are enclosed and inward facing to protect them from the harsh winter winds and the dust storms of spring. Their design also reflects the traditions of China, following the rules of feng shui and the patriarchal, Confucian tenants of order and heirarchy that were so important to society.
Housing is now one of the most difficult problems facing Beijing, a city that is growing both spatially and in terms of population at a fast rate. As such, one siheyuan now often houses several families and many yards have been taken up with additional rooms. This contributes to the "rabbit-warren" nature of the hutongs. The living conditions in many siheyuans are now considered squalid, especially as very few have private toilets or washrooms. To solve the apparent problems of overcrowding, the siheyuan are being torn down and replaced by modern blocks of flats. There are, however, still some grand siheyuan in Beijing that have been preserved in all their former glory. Mainly built for nobles and high officials before the turn of the century, many have been turned into museums, and others are being lived in by present-day governmental officials or used as government offices, go along with shishahai area, you can find the typical Siheyuan.
Cozy Bar with couches.
It is cozy and has a nice warm glow from the lanterns. The couches are so comfortable. A great place to relax and chat and have a few cocktails. The lady who owns the bar is Mongolian, and she is only 22 years old. She set up the bar when she was 19. She is so friendly and kind. The drink menus are in English and Chinese.