Beijing is an ancient city with a long history. Back in 3000 years ago in Zhou dynasty, Beijing, which was called Ji at the moment, had been named capital of Yan. Thereafter, Liao, Jin, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasty all made Beijing their capital. Therefore, Beijingis famous for "Capital of a thousand years".
As the capital of the People's Republic of China, Beijing is located in northern China, close to Tianjin Municipality and partially surrounded by Hebei Province. The city covers an area of more than 16,410 square kilometers (6336 square miles) and has a population of 14.93 million people.
The long history leaves Beijing precious cultural treasure. Winding for several kilometers in Beijing area, the Great Wall is the only man-made structure that could been seen in the space. The Summer Palace is a classic composition of ancient royal gardens, and the Forbidden City is the largest royal palaces in the world. Tiantan is where the emperor used tofete their ancestors, and also the soul of Chinese ancient constructions. The four sites above has been confirmed world cultural heritage by UNESCO. However, the best representatives for Beijing are the vanishing Hutongs and square courtyards. Through hundreds of years, they have become symbol of Beijing's life. Tian'anmen square being still brilliant today with cloverleaf junctions and skyscrapers everywhere, the old-time scene and modern culture are combined to present a brand new visage of Beijing.
Beijing Travel Guide
1. From Beijing Capital International Airport
There are airport shuttle buses, express and taxi service at Beijing Capital International Airport.
(1) Take the shuttle Bus (to Gongzhu Fen) and get off at Beitaipingzhuang, and then take taxi to the Central Garden Hotel.
(2) Take the airport express at Terminal 2 and get off at Dongzhimen station. And then take the subway 2 from Dongzhimen to Xizhimen station and take taxi to the Hotel.
(3) Take the taxi directly. It costs about CNY 100 with extra highway fee 10 yuan.
2. From railway station
(1) Take the bus No.320 to Nongkeyuan station and then change to bus No.16 or Yuntong 105, or Yuntong 205 to the Central Garden Hotel.
(2) From Beijing Railway Station.
Take subway 2 to Xizhimen station and then change to bus No.16/933/Yuntong105/Yuntong205 to the hotel.
3. by Taxi
You can take taxi and go to Central Garden Hotel.
No.18, Gaoliangqiao Xie Street, Haidian District,Beijing
The sentence may help you to get to the hotel:
Please drive me to Central Garden Hotel
In China, only Chinese yuan is used. However, exchange centers can be found at airports, most hotels and large shopping centers. The exchange rate is about US$ 1 = CNY 6.8. When exchanging money, please keep your receipt, which you will need in order to change any remaining Chinese yuan back to foreign currency when leaving China. Visa, Master, American Express, Diners Club and JCB are accepted in many department stores and hotels. It may be difficult to draw cash with credit cards.
Climate and Weather
Beginning December is early winter for Beijing. The average daily temperature is about 3 degrees Celsius, with highs of around 8 degrees and lows of around -3 degrees. It will be cold during the day and below freezing at night. You'll probably be thankful if you bring along a light pair of long underwear, a fleece and a wind-proof or down jacket. Rainfall in December is at an annual minimum.
The Great Wall
Stretching for 6,000 kilometers from the east to the west, the Great Wall is China's ancient gigantic engineering project, one of the eight wonders of the world and the only man-made construction visible from satellites in orbit. Building of the Wall began during the Warring State Period (476-221 BC). When separate sections were built in scattered strategic areas by different kingdoms to protect their territories. Following China' s unification under the first Qin emperor. Qin Shi Huangdi (221-206 BC), the walls were linked up and extended. The imposing Badaling section, visited by virtually all tourists to the capital, is 6.6 meters high, 5.5 meters wide, broad enough to accommodate five cavalrymen or 10 infantrymen marching abreast. Standing atop the Great Walls, visitors looking through slots and over parapets can imagine the terrible battles, which were fought here hundreds of years ago.
The Palace Museum (The Forbidden City)
Commonly known as the Forbidden City, the Palace Museum is the largest piece of ancient Chinese architecture still standing. It covers an area of 72 hectares, 960 meters long from north to south and 750 meters wide from east to west, and is encircled by a 10-meter high wall and a 52-meter wide moat. This large-scale construction, one of the great achievements of human history, took 14 years and was finished in 1420. The entire complex includes six main palaces, as well as many smaller buildings, together containing 9,999 rooms. It is a vast treasure house of precious art objects and rich architecture. Twenty-four emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties ruled from the Forbidden City.
The Summer Palace
The Summer Palace (Yi He Yuan), so named because it served as the summer residence of the imperial households, consists of the Longevity Hill (59 meters high) and Kunming Lake with a total area of 290 hectares. It has a history of over 800 years. In 1153, the Jin Dynasty built an imperial palace on the present site of the Summer Palace. In 1750, Emperor Qianlong spent 4.8 million tales of silver in building the Garden of Clear Ripples and changed the name to Longevity Hill to celebrate his mother's birthday and the lake to Kunming for he wanted to follow the example of Emperor Wudi of Han Dynasty who had trained his navy centuries before in Kunming pool in Chang'an (near Xi'an).
The Temple of Heaven
Covering an area of 273 hectares, the Temple is a masterpiece of 15th-century architecture built in 1 420 according to the most advanced principles of mechanics and geometry available at the time. It consists mainly of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests, the Imperial Vault of Heaven, and the Circular Mound Altar of Heaven. It was the place where emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties worshipped heaven and prayed for good harvests twice a year, on the 15th day of the first lunar month and at the winter solstice.
The Lama Temple
The Lama Temple(Yonghe Palce) is a famous lamasery located in the northeastern part of the old city. It was a palatial residence built in 1694 by Qing Emperor Kangxi for his fourth son, Prince Yongzheng. This magnificent temple consists of five main buildings lying on the north-south axis, with annex halls on both sides. After Emperor Yongzheng moved to the Forbidden City, it was renamed Yonghe Palace( the Palace of Harmony) and green roof tiles were replaced by yellow ones to suit a monarch’s home. The Palace was converted into a lamasery in 1744. In the last hall stands a spectacular 18-meters Maitria Buddha carved from a single sandwood tree.
Tian’anmen( the Gate of Heavenly Peace), is located in the center of Beijing. It was first built in 1417 and named Chengtianmen(the Gate of Heavenly Succession). At the end of the Ming Dynasty, it was seriously damaged by war. When it was rebuilt under the Qing in 1651, it was renamed Tian’anmen, and served as the main entrance to the Imperial City, the administrative and residential quarters for court officials and retainers. The southern sections of the Imperial City wall still stand on both sides of the Gate. The tower at the top of the gate is nine-room wide and five –room deep. According to the Book of Changes, the two numbers nine and five, when combined, symbolize the supreme status of a sovereign.
On October 1, 1949, chairman Mao Zedong proclaimed on Tian’anmen Rostrum the founding of the People’s Republic of China. Since then Tian’anmen has been the symbol of New Chine\a. Chairman Mao’s portrait is hung above the central entrance, flanked by two slogans:" Long Live the Great Unity of the Peoples of the World". Today, the splendour of Tian’anmen attracts million of visitors from all over the world. The Rostrum on its top was opened in 1988 to the public for the first time in its history. It offers a panoramic view of the Square and the city proper.
Situated due south of Tian’anmen, the Square has an area of 44 hectares(109 acres) that can accommodate as many as one million people for public gatherings. It has witnessed may historical events in China’s modern history and is a place for celebrations on such festive days as international Labour Day on May 1st and national Day on October 1st.
Beihai Park located in central Beijing, is one of the oldest and most authentically perserved imperial gardens in China. It has a history of 1000 years.
Beihai has existed throughout the Liao, Jin, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties. Most of the buildings now standing were constructed during Emperor Qianlong's regin in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911 A.D.).
Beihai was opened to the public in 1925 and in 1961 it was one of the first important cultural sites placed under protection by the State Council. The park occupies an area of 69 hectares including a 39-hectare lake. In the garden, pavilions and towers nestle amid the beautiful scenery of lakes and hills,grass and trees. Carrying on the traditions of garden landscaping of ancient China Beihai is a gem of garden art.
National Stadium ("Bird's Nest")
Located at the southern part of the Olympic Green in Beijing, the National Stadium is the main stadium of the 29th Olympiad in 2008. Occupying an area of 21 hectares, it has a floor space of 258,000 square meters. Its seating capacity amounts to 91,000, including 11,000 temporary seats.
The venue host the opening and closing ceremonies of the Beijing Olympic Games and Paralympic Games, the track and field competitions, and the football finals. After the Olympics, the stadium will become a large-scale sports and entertainment facility for the residents of Beijing -- an architectural landmark and Olympic legacy.
The main body's elements support each other and converge into a grid formation, just like a bird's nest with interlocking branches and twigs. Being a seven-story shear wall system, the stadium's stand has a concrete framework. The upper part of the stand and the stadium's steel structure are separated from each other, but both are based on a joint footing. The roof of the National Stadium is covered by a double-layer membrane structure, with a transparent ETFE membrane fixed on the upper part of the roofing structure and a translucent PTFE membrane fixed on its lower part. A PTFE acoustic ceiling is attached to the side walls of the inner ring.
National Aquatics Center ("Water Cube")
National Aquatics Center, the landmark building of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, is located inside the Beijing Olympic Green. It is axially related to the National Stadium on the north part of Beijing Central Axis and reinforces the historical and cultural features of Beijing city. The National Aquatics Center is the venue for swimming, diving, synchronized swimming and water-polo final during the Olympic Games. The total seating capacity is 17,000, including 6,000 permanent and 11,000 temporary for Games which will be removed post-Games, then the National Aquatics Center will become the venue for various activities such as aquatic sports, swimming, fitness and recreation.
The international competition-winning scheme is known as "Water Cube" ([H2O]³). It is designed by the design consortium consists of China State Construction Engineering Corporation, China State Construction International (Shenzhen) Design Co., Ltd, PTW Architects (Australia) and Ove Arup (Australia). The design concept of the "water cube" combines the symbolisms of the architecture and the unique water bubble structure, and build an appropriate complement to the National Stadium. The NSC functionally meets the requirement of 2008 Olympic Games and post-games operation.
|Copyright ⓒ 2009 Beijing Jiaotong University. All rights reserved|