For centuries, beguiling Beijing has remained the cultural and political centre of China. With over 7,300 cultural relics and a staggering six UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the city is adorned with Imperial grandeur and splendid ornate decoration and, unlike Shanghai, its aesthetics have remained distinctly Chinese, dominated by centuries of heritage.
The Forbidden City and The Summer Palace both encompass grand palaces and elevated temples surrounded by elaborate gardens and intricate courtyards, enclosed by some of the world's most innovative modern buildings – highlighting the eclecticism and complexity of this compelling city. Of course, no trip to Beijing would be complete without meandering along the challenging path of the Great Wall of China as it snakes its way across breathtaking scenery and miles of isolated hillside.
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Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs as early as possible. We highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your Doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.
Visa and Advance Passenger Information
All passengers must ensure they have valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.Travelling With Children or Without an Adult
Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country (for example, South Africa) or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.
The Great Wall of China
Over 2,600 years ago, more than 1,000,000 labourers completed work on the longest manmade structure in the world. Once a striking and important line of military defence, the Great Wall of China has now become a unique UNESCO World Heritage Site and an icon of the China’s glorious and notorious past. Tackle the wall’s path at its most renowned spot, as it rolls majestically over the peaks and hills of the Beijing municipality, passing fascinating remains and absorbing truly breathtaking views.
The vibrant heart of China’s ever-evolving cultural scene, Beijing is home to world-class museums, enchanting galleries and countless music venues; the National Museum of China tracks 5,000 years of Chinese history and culture, the Capital Museum – arguably Beijing’s finest – houses informative exhibitions on the evolution of the city, whilst 798 Art District comprises a maze of galleries devoted to weird and wonderful contemporary art. A nation known for its mesmerising, traditional performing arts, Beijing allows guests to experience the mysterious Peking opera, breathtaking acrobatics and elegant traditional Chinese dance.
Temples & Palaces
Prepare to be utterly mesmerised by the UNESCO-listed Forbidden City – surrounded by kilometres of grand, scarlet citadel walls – the largest and best-preserved collection of antique buildings in China and the world’s most extensive palace complex. An equally striking design, the Summer Palace’s huge lake, temples, gardens, pavilions, bridges and corridors simply must be explored, whilst the stunning hilltop views are an added bonus. Home to countless, intricately designed Buddhist and Taoist temples, Lama, Fayuan and Dongyue Temples are among the most renowned.
Boasting no fewer than 60,000 eclectic, exquisite dining venues, Beijing reflects the Chinese love affair with food. Sample classic dishes from every corner of China – from Peking duck to delicious dumplings – or enjoy some of the world’s very best fine dining in stunning locations. The Four Seasons Hotel Beijing houses Cai Yi Xuan, in 2016 named ‘Best Chinese Hotel Restaurant’ by Time Out Food Awards; Jackson Wu’s prestigious, Michelin-starred, kitchen at The Chef’s Table and the multi-award-winning Italian eatery, Mio.
Combining vibrant, traditional Chinese markets with sleek, newly-founded malls, shopping is an inevitable part of a trip to Beijing. Easily navigate the air-conditioned, multi-storey Mall at the Oriental Plaza or the Scietch Plaza Mall – among others – picking up luxury goods from global designer brands. Alternatively, Wanfujing Shopping Street is one of the most ancient and recognised in the city, housing Beijing Department store, quaint bookshops and beguiling snack shops. A number of bustling, colourful markets sell everything from pearls and silk to tea, whilst the lively Panjiayuan Market is the best place for arts, crafts and antiques.
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