How to plan a family tour in Beijing

Serving as capital intermittently for 8 ancient dynasties, Beijing is known to the world for its rich cultural heritages and amazing natural scenery, which has more attractions than you can attend to, making Beijing travel a hit for families from all corners of the globe. Beijing is perfect for travelling throughout the year owing to its 200+ attractions accessible to the public, of which are 6 world heritage sites, 5 national geo-parks and 15 national forest parks, highlighted by Badaling Great Wall, the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace, and Beijing travel has offered millions of families unforgettable pleasant memories.

How to plan a Beijing tour for a family really depends on what you really like to see and do, and here’s a recommended 3-day itinerary for your reference, which enables your Beijing travel to be more comfortable enjoyable and educational.

D1: Tiananmen Square→the Forbidden City→Badaling Great Wall

Take bus No. 22 to Qianmen Street and walk through 2 underground-passages in the morning, and you’re on Tiananmen Square, where you can fully taste its strong historic connotation through Tiananmen Rostrum, Chairman Mao’s Memorial Hall, the People’s Congress Hall, China’s National Museum in the north, south, west and east respectively. Just walk few minutes northward after breakfast, you’ve get to the Forbidden City, where you are recommended to visit Supreme Harmony Hall, Central Harmony Hall and Treasure Hall to experience how imperial life was like. Take a bus at Qianmen Tourist Distribution Center to Badaling Great Wall after lunch, and you’ll marvel at the intelligence of the ancient Chinese, tasting the meaning of “He who has never been to the Great Wall is not a true man.”

D2:Summer Palace→Perking University→Yihe Garden

Get up early in the morning, and you take bus No. 330 to the Summer Palace directly, an imperial garden in the Qing dynasty, where you are highly advised to visit the Benevolence & Longevity Hall and Happiness & Longevity (residence of Empress Dowager Cixi) as well as boat in Kunming Lake with your children.

It takes about10 minutes from the Summer Palace to Perking University by Metro Line 4, and you could immerse yourself into its profound academic atmosphere and beautiful natural scenery, from which bus No. 685 gets you to Yihe Garden in the afternoon, an imperial garden as well, and there’re only crumbling walls and ruined curbs standing silently for public viewing after being ransacked by 8-power allied force in the Qing dynasty.

D3: National Center for Performing Arts→ Bird Nest→Water Cubic

After exploring the historical elements of Beijing for 2 days, it’s time for your family to appreciate its modern element. You’re advised to visit the National Center for Performing Arts in the morning to appreciate its aesthetic curves and listen to classical music once composed by Beethoven, Mozart and Tchaikovsky, from which a taxi takes you to the Bird Nest in the afternoon, and then you take bus No. 82 to the Water Cubic. Both Bird Nest and Water Cubic served as venues for 2008 Olympics, with bus No. 82 available between them, and the latter is more fantastic at night.

In addition to the attractions mentioned above, you can choose the Temple of Heaven, Beijing Happy Valley and Beijing Science & Technology Center as alternatives, all of which are magnets for visitors and surely will add much luster to your Beijing tour.

Editor's note: Plan your trip to Beijing with, featuring the best hotels, private guide and driver, discover more in Beijing.

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