check out one of the capital...
check out one of the capital city's most beautiful gardens... DA GUAN YUAN.
This was the inspiring setting for the most popular Chinese (classic) novel ever penned - 'Dream of the Red Mansion'. I shan't spoil the fun and tell you the story. Go borrow the book - the English translation, that is (er, that is also the version that I read actually). Oh, and that's us (Katalina & moi), savoring every moment of our visit here! (P.S. The temperature that morning had dropped drastically to -5 degrees Celcius. Brrr....).
The Chinese surrency is the yuan. $1 US = about 8 Chinese Yuan. That means that this bill is worth about $12.50
you can buy a lot of stuff with this like:
10 Mao watches
dinner and a cab ride
breakfast for 4 in a nice hotel restaurant
breakfast for 165 of your closest friends at a local restaurant
a sweatshirt at the silk market
a nice jade necklace
several skewers of mutton
Just near the Starbucks coffee shop at the southern end of Qianhai Lake, you can often see old men engaging in a Chinese form of transitory fluxus art. Using a small bucket of water and a long stick with a sponge tip, these old men create messages on the sidewalk in Chinese characters. After a couple of minutes, the breeze evaporates the text. It was fun watching the small Chinese boy seen in this photo, as he tried to make out what the old man was writing, and what could be the meaning of it all.
The original outdoor Xiushui Market (a.k.a. Silk Alley) was located in Xiushui Dongjie, Southeast of Ritan near the First Embassy Area of Beijing. The shopping alley consisted of 410 stalls selling mostly knock-off luxury name brand garments, silk products, and tourist souvenirs. After 20 years of business, the old Xiushui Market was ordered to close down for demolition on January 6th, 2005 due to fire safety hazards, security issues, and the absence of land permits from individual landlords. The application for demolition was filed on July 2004 by the Beijing Urban Planning Bureau, the Chaoyang Public Engineering Committee, the Chaoyang Department of Public Security and Fire Fighting, and the Chaoyang Foreign Liaison Office.
Silk Street(Xiùshuǐjiē) is a shopping center in Beijing that accommodates over 1,700 retail vendors, notorious among international tourists for their wide selection of counterfeit designer brand apparels. Xiushui Market, the current Silk Street establishment has diversified their business scope. In addition to selling fashion apparels & accessories such as hats, handbags, shoes, belts, sportswear, silk fabrics like their predecessor, the new Silk Street have introduced traditional Chinese handicrafts, antiques, calligraphy, carpets, table cloths, bed coverings, paintings, hand-knit dresses, toys, electronic gadgets, trinkets, and fine jewelry.
Touts waiting at taxi stands
There's usually a taxi stand in bus terminals, train stations, etc. You'll be approached by a tout who will over price you. Do not go with them, you might be tempted to because you will find the Chinese a bit rude and be happy when someone smiles at you and wants to help you (english is very limited so trust me you'll like this especially remote parts of China).
Don't listen to him, wait in the taxi line with all the other Chinese. Don't let them butt infront of you, there's usually someone there who is overlooking this and will help you.
Try to have a map or directions in Chinese.