Archive for the ‘Beijing Travel’ Category

How to Visit Jingdong Karst Cave in Beijing

Monday, August 20th, 2018
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Plan your Beijing excursion? Jingdong Karst Cave, is popularly known as Jingdong Big Cave or Big Karst Cave in Pinggu. It is located in Heidouyu Village at Pinggu District, 90km east of Beijing city proper. “Jingdong” literally means “East of Beijing”.

Jingdong Karst Cave have existed ever since 1.5 billion years before, hence the name of “The Oldest Karst Cave in the world”. This karst cave stretches over 25,00m including a 100m boat trip inside the karst cave. The temperature inside the karst cave is stable, warm in winter and cool in summer.

The karst cave is divided into 8 viewing areas named after the unique rock formations, the stalactites, stalagmites, and columns that can be found inside the cave. The formations were created over thousands of years by dripping water. Some of the eight viewing areas are given interesting names like “Fairyland in Penglai”, “Spring Rain in Southern China”, “Water Curtain Cave”, “Heavenly Torch” and so on.

The normal visiting time inside the cave takes about one and half hours. Visitors will be escorted by a karst cave tour guide from beginning to the end. The entrance ticket is RMB65 p/p.

After having your ticket checked, you walk through a 140m man-made tunnel which is linked to the cave inside. The stalactites, stalagmites, and columns are lit by lamps of different colors. You have to walk slowly to keep from falling down due to the wet and slippery stone steps.

How to get there?
For public transportation, you take the 918 from Dongzhimen Transport Hub. Arriving at Pinggu Bus Terminal, you are required to connect bus 25 passing by Jingdong Big Karst Cave and get off the Jingdong Karst Cave.

For self-guide drive, you drive along Jinggu Expressway, then branch off and follow the road sign pointing to Jingdong Big Karst Cave.

Enquiry: 60971708
Tourist complaint: 89991622
The the stalactites look like icicles.

The rock is naturally carved with th forms of gingers

The rock is naturally carved with th forms of gingers

The stalactites are still growing and the stone rocks are formed by fast-flowing water rich in calcium carbonate and carbon.

The stalactites are still growing


The other major Attractions in Pinggu, Beijing

1) Flying Dragon Valley
2) Bolitai Great Wall
3) Jinhai Lake
4) Pinggu Glass Sightseeing Platform
5) Jingdong Karst Cave
6) Huangsongyu Reservior
7) Diaowo Village

Hassle-Free Private Tour to Visit the Glass Sightseeing Platform
If you don’t want go the daunting do-it-yourself-route and prefer an organized hassle-free private tour to visit the glass sightseeing platform, no worry and we have the following options:

Beijing Family Visit Springtime Day Tour
Beijing Family Visit Summer Day Tour
Beijing Family Visit Autumn Day Tour

Further Readings


Top 10 Attractions in Beijing
How to Visit Forbidden City
How to Visit Temple of Heaven
How to Visit Summer Palace
How to Visit Ming Tombs
How to Visit the Great Wall of China
How to Visit Tiananmen Square
How to Visit Hutongs
How to Visit Olympic Sites

Top 10 Markets in Beijing
Top 10 Shopping Malls in Beijing
Beijing Shopping

Wangfujing Night Snack Street
Qianmen Commercial Street
Beijing Huguosi Street
Any questions,  just drop a line.

The Best Place to Watch Sunrise in Beijing

Friday, August 17th, 2018
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Looking for a romantic place to capture the sunrise in the downtown Beijing area on your Beijing tour? There is no better place in than Jingshan Park sitting on the centre of the north-south axis of Beijing.

The hill in Jingshan Park is 45.7 meters at relative height and 94.2 at sea level, the highest sea-level viewpoint in Beijing where you are able to have a panoramic view of the city of Beijing – East: Beijing Central Business District; South: Forbidden City; West: the Beihai Park and the North: Drum Tower and Bell Tower on the north-south axis of Beijing.

Tips for watching the sunrise from the hilltop of Jingshan Park
1. It is important to know when the sun will rise and set. Different day and season has its unique sunrise or sunset time. Check Beijing Real Time Photos for the general ideal of the sunrise time.

2. It is better to get up early to be on the hilltop of Jingshan Park and have ample time to check the surroundings and understand where would be a good spot to take pictures. The shortcoming is that the official opening hour of Jingshan Park is set at 6:30am, which makes some seasons, especially summer time impossible to capture the first rays of the sunrise. The sunrise time from March to October is after 6:30am in Beijing. That means people cannot watch the first rays of sunrise from the hill top of Jingshan Park.

3. So the best time for watching the sunrise from Jingshan Park falls on later autumn (November) to the early spring (February) when the sunrise time is after 6:30am, the opening hour for Jingshan Park.

4. Though the time between March and October is not the good time for watching the sunrise from Jingshan Park, basically it won’t deter you to go there for a splendid sunrise experience! Before you clamber up the hilltop of Jingshan waiting for the sunrise, you are advised to go to the northwest corner outside the moat of Forbidden City, a perfect spot capturing the first rays of sunrise over Forbidden City and the moat, an amazing supplement for the shame caused by the improper opening hour of Jingshan Park.

After watching the sunrise over the moat and Forbidden City, continue to walk to the Jingshan Park to watch the sunrise already a bit higher over skyline in the east of Beijing.

How to get to Jingshan Park
Jingshan Park is located just across the north gate to Forbidden City. Jingshan Park has three gates with south gate facing the north exit of Forbidden City. At such early hour in the morning, you’d better take a taxi from your hotel, and ask your taxi driver to drop you off at any of the three gates – east, west and south.

Opening hours: 6:30 am – 9:00pm. Entrance fee: RMB 2 (RMB10 per person during Peony Festival April and May). Basically it takes 3-5 minutes to walk up to the hilltop of the a park. On the hill, there are five pavilions with Wanchun Pavilion perched in the middle along Beijing’s North-south axis and two couple of pavilions on both side the Wanchun Pavilion. The Wanchun Pavilion is the best spot to watch the sunrise.

If the sunrise time is before the opening time of the Jingshan Park, you may go to the northwest corner outside the moat of Forbidden City, a perfect spot capturing the first rays of sunrise over Forbidden City and the moat, a amazing supplement for the shame caused by the improper opening hour of Jingshan Park.

For information on Jingshan Park, please read my earlier post of Jingshan Park not to be missed  and Sunset View at Jingshan Park.

Now, follow me to experience the sunrise from Jingshan Park.

Leaving my home around 5:50am and drive directly to the west gate to Jingshang Park. After parking my car at the parking lot west of the west gate,  I have to walk fast to the northwest corner of Forbidden City to catch the rising sun since it has been already 6:00am, a sunrise time today!

It is a 3-5 minute walk from the parking lot to the northwest corner of Forbidden City. To my pleasant surprise, there have been already a few crazy people there chatting, and taking pictures. This is a perfect spot to shoot the magnificent turret of Forbidden City and its reflection on the moat.

there have been already a few crazy people there chatting and taking pictures 1

there have been already a few crazy people there chatting and taking pictures 1

It is a cloudy today and the sunrise is blurred and shreds dotted rays, adding much colors to the skyline decorating the Turret ornately.
adding much colors to the skyline decorating the Turrent ornately.

adding much colors to the skyline decorating the Turret ornately.

The sun defies the blocking of the clouds and gives out radiant rays.
The sun defies the blocking of the clouds and gives out radiant rays.1

The sun defies the blocking of the clouds and gives out radiant rays.1

The red sunrise rays cut through the thick clouds with pretty reflections on the moat.
The red sunrise rays cut through the thick clouds with pretty reflections on the moat.

The red sunrise rays cut through the thick clouds with pretty reflections on the moat.

Mesmerized by the stunning view, I’ve almost forgotten the time. It is past 6:30am, so I walk quickly to the west gate to Jingshan Park and walk up to the hilltop – Wanchun Pavilion and enjoy myself with the whole city below me.

The sun has been higher over the skyline

The sun has been higher over the skyline

The sun has been higher over the skyline

Below the east sunrise is the skyline of the new CCTV office building, World Trade Center Phase 3 Building (at 330M Beijing’s Tallest)…

The rising sun finds a hole in the clouds and appears triumphantly

The rising sun finds a hole in the clouds and appears triumphantly

The rising sun finds a hole in the clouds and appears triumphantly

Wanchun Pavilion is the best place in the park to watch the sunrise.
Wanchun Pavilion is the best place in the park to watch the sunrise.1

Wanchun Pavilion is the best place in the park to watch the sunrise.1

In the north below my feet is the massive Forbidden City looking brilliantly under a radiant rising sun.
the massive Forbidden City looking brilliantly under a radiant rising sun.

the massive Forbidden City looking brilliantly under a radiant rising sun.

In the north below my feet is the massive Forbidden City looking brilliantly under a radiant rising sun.
the massive Forbidden City looking brilliantly under a radiant rising sun.1

the massive Forbidden City looking brilliantly under a radiant rising sun.1

On the west is the famous Beihai Park with its beauty – White Stupa and the lake.
On the west is the famous Beihai Park with its beauty - White Stupa and the lake.

On the west is the famous Beihai Park with its beauty – White Stupa and the lake.

To the north is the Drum Tower and Bell Tower on the north-south axis of Beijing.
To the north is the Drum Tower and Bell Tower on the north-south axis of Beijing.

To the north is the Drum Tower and Bell Tower on the north-south axis of Beijing.

Watching the sunrise at Jingshan Park is a non-ending process for me!
Watching the sunrise at Jingshan Park is a non-ending process for me

Watching the sunrise at Jingshan Park is a non-ending process for me

 Surely, I will come back!
Surely, I will come back!

Surely, I will come back!

Tip:  Hassle-free Beijing Guided Tours
If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours,  here are some options for guided tours to Beijing:

Beijing Dinner & Night Boat Tour. from US$ 59P/P

Beijing by Night Illuminations Tour  from US$33 p/p

Beijing Hutong Highlight One Day Tour  from US$59 p/p

Beijing Highlight Day Tour from US$59 P/P
(Tiananmen + Forbidden City + Mutianyu Great Wall)
Beijing Classic City Tour from US$65 P/P
(Tiananmen + Forbidden City + Temple of Heaven + Summer Palace)
Beijing Excursion Tour from US$59 P/P
(Mutianyu Great Wall + Ming Tomb)
Beijing Hutong Highlight Tour from US$59 P/P
( Hutong + Rickshaw)

Mutianyu Great Wall Half Day Tour from US$55 p/p
Hike from Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall Day Tour from US$69 p/p

Mutianyu Great Wall Layover Tour from US$65 p/p
Beijing Highlight Layover Tour from US$75 p/p

Further Readings


How to Visit Grand Canal in Hangzhou.
Top 10 Attractions in Beijing
How to Visit Forbidden City
How to Visit Temple of Heaven
How to Visit Summer Palace
How to Visit Ming Tombs
How to Visit the Great Wall of China
How to Visit Tiananmen Square
How to Visit Hutongs
How to Visit Olympic Sites

Top 10 Markets in Beijing
Top 10 Shopping Malls in Beijing
Beijing Shopping

Wangfujing Night Snack Street
Qianmen Commercial Street
Beijing Huguosi Street

For any questions, just drop a line.

Astronomical Instruments at Beijing Ancient Observatory

Thursday, August 16th, 2018
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In 1900, Field Marshal von Waldersee, as Allied Supreme Commander in China in 1900-1901, was amazed by the ornately made astronomical instruments of Chinese-Western style placed on the top of the castle-like platform of Beijing Ancient Observtory. He ordered to have 5 of the most spectacular astronomical instruments taken to Germany.

In 1907, all the 5 astronomical instruments were shipped to Berlin and placed on the lawn of the royal garden in Bustan Palace including 1) A New Armilla, built in 1744  2) A Celestial Globe, built in 1673  3) Altazimuth, made in 1672 4) Sexant, made in 1673 5) Azimuth Theodolite, made in 1715. It wasn’t until in 1921 did all the five pieces were returned to Beijing Ancient Observatory under the Item 131 of the Treaty of Versailles.

Plan your Beijing tour? If you have a passion for Chinese history and ancient astronomy in particular, surely you cannot afford to miss a glimpse of these magnificent astronomical instruments.

Clamber the 90 stone steps up to the 14m high castle-like square tower to view these instruments with a backdrop of modern buildings nearby, definitely giving you a strong feeling of timeline and better understanding China’s past, present and future.

The 14m high castle-like square tower that holds these 8 most magnificent astronomical instruments. Take subway line 1 and get off at the station of Jianguomen, exit from Exit C and you will see the massive tower.
Clamber the 90 stone steps up to the top of the 14m high castle-like square tower

Clamber the 90 stone steps up to the top of the 14m high castle-like square tower

Clamber the 90 stone steps up to the top of the 14m high castle-like square tower


View these instruments with a backdrop of modern buildings nearby
view these instruments with a backdrop of modern buildings nearby

view these instruments with a backdrop of modern buildings nearby

New Armilla: Made in 1744 for the purpose of determining true solar time as well as the right ascension difference and declination of celestial bodies.
New Armilla

New Armilla

Celestial Globe: Made in 1673 for the purpose of determining the rising and setting time and azimuth of celestial bodies as well as their altitude and azimuth at any other time.
Celestial Globe

Celestial Globe

Ecliptic Armilla: Made in 1673 for the purpose of determining ecliptic longitude difference and latitude of celestial bodies as well the 24 Solar Terms.
Altazimuth: Made in 1672 for the purpose of determining the azimuth of celestial bodies.
Altazimuth

Altazimuth

Azimuth Theodolite: Made in 1715 for the purpose of determining the azimuth and altitude of celestial bodies.
Azimuth Theodolite

Azimuth Theodolite

Sexant: Made in 1673 for the purpose of measuring the angular distance between two stars less than 60 apart as well as angular diameters of the sun and the moon.
Sexant

Sexant

Equatorial Armilla: Made in 1673 for the purpose of dtermining the true solar time as well as the right ascension difference and declination of celestial bodies.
Equatorial Armilla

Equatorial Armilla

Tip:  Hassle-free Beijing Guided Tours
If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours,  here are some options for guided tours to Beijing:

Beijing Dinner & Night Boat Tour. from US$ 59P/P

Beijing by Night Illuminations Tour  from US$33 p/p

Beijing Hutong Highlight One Day Tour  from US$59 p/p

Beijing Highlight Day Tour from US$59 P/P
(Tiananmen + Forbidden City + Mutianyu Great Wall)
Beijing Classic City Tour from US$65 P/P
(Tiananmen + Forbidden City + Temple of Heaven + Summer Palace)
Beijing Excursion Tour from US$59 P/P
(Mutianyu Great Wall + Ming Tomb)
Beijing Hutong Highlight Tour from US$59 P/P
( Hutong + Rickshaw)

Mutianyu Great Wall Half Day Tour from US$55 p/p
Hike from Jiankou to Mutianyu Great Wall Day Tour from US$69 p/p

Mutianyu Great Wall Layover Tour from US$65 p/p
Beijing Highlight Layover Tour from US$75 p/p

Further Readings


How to Visit Grand Canal in Hangzhou.
Top 10 Attractions in Beijing
How to Visit Forbidden City
How to Visit Temple of Heaven
How to Visit Summer Palace
How to Visit Ming Tombs
How to Visit the Great Wall of China
How to Visit Tiananmen Square
How to Visit Hutongs
How to Visit Olympic Sites

Top 10 Markets in Beijing
Top 10 Shopping Malls in Beijing
Beijing Shopping

Wangfujing Night Snack Street
Qianmen Commercial Street
Beijing Huguosi Street

For any questions, just drop a line.