Though I’ve never lived as an expatriate in Beijing, China, I have traveled through the city and review this list and video from Geobeats with a handful of my Asia expat friends who know their city well. Beijing’s top tourist attractions are popular for a reason and it centers on the fact that this city dates back far into history and many major global events played out in the ancient streets of Beijing.
Let’s take a look at the beauty and culture in the city steeped into Beijing and a few tops spots local expats will enjoy sightseeing even in their home city!
Top Ten Travel Attractions in Beijing, Thailand
- Hutongs: This refers to the small complexes you’ll find clustered behind elaborate doors throughout the city. The hutongs are clusters of houses with ancient architecture and design still visible all around.
- The Beijing Zoo: This is hit or miss on my personal list since I find many zoos in the developing world hard to handle, but the diversity of animals can make for a fun day if you need a break from Beijing’s overcast skies and zooming cars.
- National Aquatic Center: Okay, this is impressive and modern, and not at all ancient, historic Beijing but it’s really a neat building. The Aquatic Center was built for the 2008 Olympics and now stands in the city center for public viewing.
- Ming Tombs: The tombs of China’s former emperors and some classic examples of well-preserved architecture throughout. A good afternoon activity to give expats some historic perspective on their city on a day off from work!
- Chinese Opera: You’ll find these throughout the city and it’s not your standard-fare Western opera, these are full shows and spectacles that your entire family will enjoy. I recommend this soon after you move to the city or visit because it’s good fun!
- The Bird’s Nest: This is impressive. Again, like the Aquatic Center it’s a piece of modern history and the building is incredibly complex and gorgeous at night!
- Beihai Park: The waters and classic Asian garden style make for a relaxing afternoon if you have some downtime and need a new place to visit and enjoy.
- The Summer Palace: Make sure you visit, well, in the summer because although pretty in the Winter, this is most impressive when the gardens are in full bloom!
- Tienanmen Square: Quite significant in Beijing (and China’s) history, this is located in the city center looking toward the Forbidden City and expats and tourists alike should make sure they watch the lowering of the flag just after sunset each day.
- Forbidden City: Touristy to the max, but you’d be terribly remiss if you skipped the city; expect to fill several hours and enjoy the largest complex of still-standing ancient wooden structures in the world.