We only booked 6 nights in China (1 in Shanghai, 4 in Beijing and 1 on a sleeper Train), mainly because we had to get back to work, otherwise we would have loved to have stayed a lot longer. We were flying into Shanghai and although I’m sure there was heaps to see in Shanghai we were very keen on getting to Beijing..
We spent the 1st day trying to get tickets for a sleeper train, normally i am very organised but we thought we can sort this out by ourselves, well we spent the entire day going from one train station to the other and back again and finally worked out that we had missed out on any sleeper train going out that day, so we booked a night in Shanghai.
The next day we decided we would get any train to Beijing and get the sleeper train back, we had booked accommodation in Beijing and wanted to be there when we said we would. The train journey was nice, not an awful lot to see along the way, but it was lovely knowing we were in China…I was so excited about seeing the Great wall.
We found our Apartment pretty easy and it was really lovely and clean, the owner was there to meet us and helped us with all questions about the area.
The Great Wall and the Forbidden City were the two things we were determined to not miss, and wanted to preferably see the Great wall on a none misty day.
The Forbidden City
Day one was quite misty so we went to the Forbidden City, I was pretty blown away…we were in China and at the Forbidden City, how awesome, it was amazing….i had this silly smile plastered on my face i think for most of the day, we even got taken into a room and were shown the retired Emperors bed, the boys got to ask questions about the Emperor.
Tuk Tuk Trip in The Hutong
From the Forbidden City we went on a Tuk Tuk ride around the Hutong (Street Alleyways), which was fun and interesting. The Hutongs are lined with courtyard homes, it’s a little hub full of life, just stunning and a total must see if in Beijing.
After this already full packed day of adventure we got directions for Ghost Street that we had read about, which is full of lit lanterns, annoyingly because we had taken so many photos at the Forbidden City and the Hutong our camera’s were dead for this street full of life, restaurants and Lanterns, we had dinner and decided to come back for a photo session on our last night.
The Great Wall
The next day we woke and it was still a bit misty but we took our chance anyway…we took the fun and interesting journey, via taxi, bus and foot to the Great wall of China…at the bottom we decided that we would be better off waiting for the gondela, and we waited in the queue for what felt like all day! the sun came out in fall force..but when we finally got onto the Great wall, we were really there, I felt I had to pinch myself, you hear about the Great Wall and see so many photos and here we were..1 to tick off the bucket list, it felt incredible to actually be standing/walking on the the Great Wall. Even Jake and Luke were wowed…it turned into a really clear day and we could see for miles.
For our last full day, we looked up everything in the guide and picked to go to the Lama Temple and back to Ghost Street (Lantern Street) for photos and for dinner we ended up in a very gorgeous Peking Duck Restaurant that was recommended to us by a local.
The Restaurant we ate at on our last night in Beijing was called `Dadong’..you can watch the chef’s preparing the ducks through the big glass windows while you sit and have a drink and wait for your table. It all felt very posh, and my mouth was watering just thinking about my crispy duck…to be really honest the food was divine everything was done to perfection but it wasn’t like the crispy duck or hoi sin sauce that i was used to so just a tiny bit disappointed, but all the other dishes we had and the lychee were totally yum.
Overnight Sleeper Train from Beijing to Shangahi
We made sure we had our sleeper train booked for our trip back to Shanghai..we were all very excited, a lovely Chinese lady helped us find our cabin…kids bagsied the top bunks..when it was time for sleep we said to Lucas that when the train stops in the morning it’ll be time to get off…he was very disappointed to hear this he was expecting a buffet breakfast to be brought around..Grant and I had done an overnight train before in Thailand, and loved it so much, we slept like babies…but on this particular trip..not sure much sleep was had, but it was still a brilliant experience for the boys.
Lastley we took the bullet train again from the main train station to the airport and upgraded to VIP Class which we had to ourselves..the boys thought this was pretty cool 🙂
There is so much to see in China, would have loved to have been able to stay for longer, so much we didn’t get to see, but I kind of like that it means that we now have to come back one day.
We booked this Accommodation way in advance, had lots of contact from the owner `he was always very friendly and willing to help. When we arrived he was there waiting for us, his place was very clean, nice and big (2 bedrooms), had the internet and wasn’t far from the train station, overall we had a lovely stay in this Apartment. We never once felt unsafe in China, will definitely go back one day..
Total cost for 4 nights was $360US