3 Offbeat Beijing Experiences To Try This Year
Published: 12 February 2015
China’s burgeoning capital, Beijing, is a great mix of old and new. Famous attractions include the historic Tiananmen Square, the iconic Great Wall, the spectacular Summer Palace and the fascinating Forbidden City.
However, if you are looking for some off-beat experiences in Beijing, then look no further!
Walk Through the Bird’s Nest:
Beijing played host to the Olympics in 2008 resulting in the construction of this fantastic National Stadium. Standing proud on the Olympic Green, around 8 km from the centre of Beijing, the Bird’s Nest is the largest steel structure in the world and regarded as one of the most complex stadiums ever created. One look and you’ll know why. The stadium is shaped exactly like a bird’s nest with an intricate grid formation that you need to see to believe. Plus, it’s even strong enough to withstand earthquakes! Walking through this incredible stadium is a wonderful experience to enjoy in Beijing. Make a full circle through the ambulatory that runs around the stands for a good view of the entire stadium. The lobby is full of restaurants and souvenir shops too.
Attend an Acrobatic show at the Tianquiao Acrobactic Theatre:
This isn’t just any old acrobatic show. Watch the best in the city at the Tianqiao Acrobatic Theatre, as performers showcase the most difficult stunts with spell-binding ease. Starting at 7pm, each daily show lasts for 90 minutes and costs around £18. Located in the Xuanwu District, this 100 year old acrobatic theatre is beautiful and well worth a visit. Our tip: don’t mix the acrobatic theatre up with the Tianqiao Theatre which is a completely different structure that showcases foreign and domestic dance companies and singers.
Shop at the Panjiayuan Antique Market:
This is one of Beijing’s most popular flea markets and really worth visiting, especially on the weekend when it’s in full swing if you want a great shopping experience. Offering jade, amber and turquoise jewellery, Chinese art, antique furniture, pottery, traditional handicrafts, musical instruments, old swords, calligraphy scrolls, textiles, old books and maps, trinkets and much more, you can easily sift through over 3,000 stalls here. Be prepared to bargain, and carry a calculator with you so you can communicate the figure you’re willing to pay to the shopkeeper. Don’t believe everything they say either, as most of the antiques here are not really genuine. Nevertheless, this is a great place to stick up on souvenirs to take back home.
Wherever your travels take you this year, remember to book your Flexicover travel insurance before you go!