Beijing Travel Guide

Beijing

With a recorded history stretching back 3,000 years and a seemingly unstoppable upward trajectory that appears set to shape the world’s future, Beijing rarely fails to intrigue even the most seasoned travelers. And with world-class cuisine, cutting-edge architecture, priceless historical artifacts and multiple world heritage sites, including numerous stretches of the Great Wall, the city delivers. In fact, you’ll be left wondering why it took you so long to come here in the first place.

travel tips

When to go

SPRING
Warming up after the winter freeze, this short season only lasts about a month, from mid-April to mid-May. But it’s a good time to visit Beijing (the city’s spring flowers are a highlight). It’s windy, but generally dry and clear.

SUMMER
Warming up after the winter freeze, this short season only lasts about a month, from mid-April to mid-May. But it’s a good time to visit Beijing (the city’s spring flowers are a highlight). It’s windy, but generally dry and clear.

FALL
Another short but sweet season (mid-September to mid-October), autumn is the best time to visit. Temperatures are comfortable, the air is clear and trees are showing off their red and golden plumage.

WINTER
Despite temperatures plummeting below zero and staying there until late February, winter can be an enjoyable. The lakes become temporary ice rinks, the tree-lined hutong (streets) get the occasional dusting of snow and major tourists sites are unusually quiet.

Transportation

Beijing's free travel card, the yikatong (一卡通), or IC card, is available at major metro stations for a small deposit (CNY 20, or $3 USD). It gets you discounted fares on all buses and means you won’t have to stand in line for metro tickets. The card also gives you access to Beijing’s bike-share program, but you’ll need to register it. To do so, take the card, along with your passport and a CNY 200 (about $30 USD) cash deposit, to the registration kiosk outside Exit A of Dongzhimen or Jinsong metro stations.

Insider tips

  • Like most locals, hardly any taxi drivers speak English, so always carry addresses with you in Chinese characters, and never go out without your hotel’s business card in your pocket.
  • Like most locals, hardly any taxi drivers speak English, so always carry addresses with you in Chinese characters, and never go out without your hotel’s business card in your pocket.
  • Like most locals, hardly any taxi drivers speak English, so always carry addresses with you in Chinese characters, and never go out without your hotel’s business card in your pocket.

top attractions

The Great Wall of China at Gubeikou

Remote and unrestored, this sweeping stretch of the Great Wall promises a once-in-a-lifetime hike.

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Forbidden City

This huge palace complex spans 178 acres and features everything from grand halls to an open-air opera house.

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The Summer Palace

This former imperial getaway on the banks of Kunming Lake boasts marble bridges and beautiful temples and palaces.

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featured properties

Park Plaza Beijing

With stylish guest rooms and outstanding meeting spaces, Park Plaza offers trend-setting designs and capture the energy and style of each individual location.

Radisson Blu Hotel, Beijing

Characterized by attention to small details and a Yes I Can! service philosophy, Radisson Blu is delivers a positive and personalized service in stylish spaces.

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