Beijing in Two Days & Heritage Walk

  • Travel Date: 18 August 2016

A day before I went to Beijing, I asked help from Crystal to help me to book a round trip train ticket to Beijing. We went to a small ticket outlet near my place and bought a round trip ticket. In Dalian, there are two railways, the new one and the old one. I’ve got a ticket that will depart & arrive in Dalian North (Dalian Bei). It’s 20-25 minutes away from my place.

August 18 came, and after our shift Crystal also helped me how to navigate Dalian’s subway to Dalian Bei/North Railway Station from Xinghai Park station. My trip from Dalian Bei was at 10AM and I arrived at Beijing Railway Station at almost 4PM. I loved the train and how comfortable it was. A 6-hour train ride that I felt so quick because of excitement. It was raining when I arrived in Beijing. I couldn’t remember how I thought I needed to get out for me to ride a subway, there might be a way underground but I was excited to see how big the train station was.

Day 0 – Arrival in Beijing & Hutong

Dalian North Railway System

@ Dalian Bei or Dalian North Railway System – Everything seems to be pretty new.

Dalian North Railway - Dalian bei

@ Dalian Bei or Dalian North Railway System

 

Dalian North Railway - Dalian bei

Arrival in Beijing Central Station.

Dalian North Railway - Dalian bei

Inside China’s high-speed train to Beijing.

Dalian North Railway - Dalian bei

Queueing up to get a ticket for Qian Men station–which is just 2 stops away from Beijing Central Station.

Looking for my hostel is a bit challenging because my phone was busted. It’s turning on and off intermittently.  The hostel was just beside the road, but honestly, it was challenging because I didn’t have any application on the phone that could help me locate it, I just have screenshots of the map. I was at the No. 46th when I realized that if I just follow the number, I can surely locate the hostel. I have seen a shop and let them repaired my phone in Hutong but it’s still busted.

 

When I arrived in my hostel, I immediately booked my Great Wall of China Tour.

Day 1 – The Great Wall of China – Mutianyo

Day 2 (half-day)- Tiananmen Square  & Forbidden City

It was a sunny morning and my last day in Beijing. My trip is at 4PM and I still had a chance to visit around the area. I didn’t know that Mao’s Mausoleum, Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City are just in the corner. If I knew, I could’ve gone in there around at night. I just realized when I was walking towards that area.

Beijing China

My morning walk to Tiananmen Square.

Beijing China

So from here, you have to use the underpass to cross the street. Look at the background, most of them are tourists.

Beijing China

Before going into the crowd…

Beijing China

After I crossed the street, this welcomed me. I thought this is going to Tiananmen Tower. I seriously did not know what the line was for.

Beijing China

I met a woman but still, we didn’t understand each other— Below are the pictures that I have taken while I was on the line oh and today (2019) I realized that these landmarks are all part of Tiananmen Square.

Let’s go back to history what about the famous Tiananmen Square:

The Tiananmen Square protests were student-led demonstrations calling for democracy, free speech and a free press in China. They were halted in a bloody crackdown, known as the Tiananmen Square Massacre, by the Chinese government on June 4 and 5, 1989.

Pro-democracy protesters, mostly students, initially marched through Beijing to Tiananmen Square following the death of Hu Yaobang. Hu, a former Communist Party leader, had worked to introduce democratic reform in China. In mourning Hu, the students called for a more open, democratic government. Eventually thousands of people joined the students in Tiananmen Square, with the protest’s numbers increasing to the tens of thousands by mid-May. 

– History

 

Beijing China

A few minutes later, I finally saw this and eventually learned that it’s the Monument to the People’s Heroes.

Beijing China

Front view of the Monument to the People’s Heroes.

Beijing China

On this side, Tiananmen Tower (Gate of Heavenly Peace) is just across this square. There’s also a flag-raising ceremony every day and a lot of people flock in this area.

Beijing China

 

I finally ditched the line and saw the Great Hall of the People.

Beijing China

I finally ditched the line and saw the Great Hall of the People.

Beijing China

And this is the Tiananmen Tower (Gate of Heavenly Peace).

 

First I saw was this– I thought it was the famous Tiananmen Square because there were a LOT of people queueing. I have no one to ask so I just followed them, and I finally realized that it’s Mao Zedong’s Mausoleum and the crowd was so huge. I remembered lining up for 1.5 hours. I am not familiar with these landmarks in Beijing, the internet just taught me after I visited Beijing.

Tiananmen Square

On my way to the Forbidden Palace. You just can’t unsee how many people are visiting this square.

Following the map that I got from my hostel, Forbidden City is just around the area as well. Since I decided not to enter the Tiananmen Tower, I went right and the Forbidden City is actually at the back of the Tiananmen Tower. I made my way to the Changpu River Park.

Forbidden City

Forbidden City

Forbidden City

At first look, I didn’t know that inside these walls was a large crowd of people waiting to get inside the palace.

Forbidden City from afar. The walkathon goes on and when I finally arrived to the gate—-boom! It’s an expectation vs reality. It’s a mob! I didn’t even know where to start.

Forbidden City Beijing China

The Meridian Gate, front entrance to the Forbidden City, with two protruding wings.

Forbidden City

Forbidden City

With this large crowd, it was impossible for me to enter the palace.

Forbidden City Operating Hours & Ticket Fees as per Travel China Guide (Subject to change)

Months Opening Hours Ticketing Time
April to October 8:30-17:00 8:30-16:00
November to March 8:30-16:30 8:30-15:30

 

Entrance Ticket April to October: CNY 60
November to March: CNY 40
Treasure Gallery CNY 10 (in Palace of Tranquil Longevity, including the Opera Museum and Stone Drum Museum)
Clock and Watch Gallery CNY 10 (in Hall for Ancestry Worship)

With a 4PM trip back to Dalian, I just took some pictures of its exterior and went back to the hostel. Again, this might not be my chance to visit these landmarks, but maybe soon. I am not closing my doors to visit China again.

Hutong Qian Men

Last-minute rampa @ Hutong.

Beijing Central Station

@ Beijing Central Station

So, for this trip, I actually kicked ‘To Hike at the Great Wall of China’ on my bucket list. I wasn’t able to visit the other landmarks, so I might visit Beijing again soon.

Where I stayed? Qian Men Hostel – I booked it through http://www.hostelworld.com.

  • Website:www.qianmenhostel.net
  • Add: No.33 mei shi jie, Qian Men, Xicheng district, BeiJing.
  • Chinese Address: 北京市西城区前门煤市街33 号
  • How to get to the Qian Men Hostel:
    • –To take Airport Express Trian from Terminal 3 or Terminal 2 of the Beijing International Airport to the Dongzhimen terminal, then transfer line2# to stop at Qianmen subway station,To go out from exitc# to Mei Shi Jie.Our hostel is No.33.
    • –Train: If you arrive at the Beijing Central station (Beijing Zhan) take the subway line2, two stops to the Qianmen Subway stop. Metro ticket costs 3RMB.
    • –If you arrive at Beijing West Train Station (Beijing Xi Zhan), take bus No.9 and stop at Qian Men Xi. Then turn to left 200 meters away to Mei Shi Jie. Walk South on Mei Shi Jie. Our hostel is No.33.
    • –Taxi: a taxi from the airport directly to the Hostel costs 120 RMB approx.

Expenses in RMB = Total of RMB 1620

    • Round trip high-speed train ticket from Dalian – 520
    • Qian Men Hostel – 210/2 nights
    • Great Wall of China Mutianyo- 280
    • Pasalubong from Hutong – 200
    • Food (2 days) – 160
    • Massage – 100
    • Phone Repair – 150

I actually didn’t feel that this country is a communist country at all. All you need to do is to abide with their laws and everything will be all fine.

P.S.

  • Read more about Tiananmen Square: Tiananmen Square Protest.
  • Thank you @ https://www.travelchinaguide.com website. 
  • FFWD to 2019: I just learned that all of those are part of Tiananmen Square while I was working on for this blog 😀 That’s maybe I was literally lost on those days because I was didn’t know that most of the landmarks are in Tiananmen Square and it’s just not a usual square as what I saw in Dalian. 

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