So we are on our last country for this period of travels, and it is of course CHINA! Our first stop is in Beijing, China, where we spent 4 days cruising around the city and taking in as much of the tourist spots as possible.
On our way to our first spot, we met this young Chinese boy. Now, at the airport we where told by a lovely lady called Laura that if you ever needed someone to speak English, your best bet was to ask the teenagers or young adults because it is mandatory for them to learn English in school. And what would you know, that proved to be very useful information! He showed us around for a bit and took us to the
The Forbidden City,
before he had to go home for dinner XD.
So let’s talk The Forbidden City, this place was MASSIVE, it served as the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. Most of the palaces, temples, and large attractions that we visited in China are from either the Ming(1368–1644) or Qinq(1644–1912) Dynasty, as they where the most recent and most things have since stayed in tact.
The Forbidden City contains over 980 surviving buildings with 8,707 rooms! Needless to say, we did NOT walk into every room. Mainly because alot of the rooms are actually closed off to the public, or if they are open, they are heavy guarded with most of the historic artifacts either already removed, or placed behind glass.
Courtyard in the Forbidden City.
The Emperor’s path, only he was allowed to walk down this, everyone else would take either the path to the left or to the right, depending on their rank.
Stone cut to tell the story of the Dragon and the Pearl, symbolizing the Emperor holding the world. There is all sorts of meanings, but whenever you see a Dragon and a Pearl, it is a symbol of the Emperor.
Next off, what is a visit to China without a bit of SHOPPING!! Yes, I am a girl and how could I resist! The amount of fake and knock-off products was unbelievable. Every major high-fashion bag brand had fakes at the market. And there was good fakes, and bad fakes. The good fakes looked so real I honesty believe you could pass it off as genuine.
In a later tour that took us to a place that shall remain anonymous for the time being, we got to stop off at a jade factory. Here they had some of the most amazing jade sculptures I have ever seen! The quality and quantity was outstanding, unfortunately the price was ridiculous, and therefor there was no jade purchasing for Nadine :/
Look closely at the photo and maybe you can see an amazing photographer at work! Heheh
Now this was a must! I HAD to see the Birds Nest Olympic 2008 Stadium, even though it was only literally a 2 second photo. I convinced our tour bus to pull over on the side of the road so I could run up and take a peek! (Cause the bus wasn’t allowed to stop there :P)
Anyways, that’s all for this post, TONS more China coming at you!!