A November 1999 trip
to Beijing by dolphoto
Quote: Mixing business with pleasure, Beijing became a series of learning experiences. The pace of change was so fast you could watch it happening. Above all, the city was filled with ancient beauty and modern friendliness.
Present business cards with both hands.
What Americans consider very rude is acceptable in China and vice versa. Ignore personal hygiene issues and keep your voice and laughter low. Do not stare, but expect to be stared at.
Do not drink tap water, drinks with ice, or eat raw vegetables (especially salad).
Keep your mind and heart open.
Attraction | "The Great Wall of China"
The Great Wall is composed of tall solid stone walls topped with walkways connecting watch towers and other military installations. It follows the natural contours of the countryside, crossing rivers and climbing steep hills. As the many signs in English will explain, the wall was built and rebuilt across many centuries and many dynasties.
No matter which portion of the wall you visit, you will only see a small portion of the full expanse. Getting to the wall is easily done by either group tour or taxi. If there are two or more of you, the latter is probably the best way to go. Getting onto the wall takes a bit of a climb and once on the wall there are few level portions. As common in China, there are few accomodations for the disabled. The extent to which you can explore the wall will depend on your level of fitness. Even if you can only visit a small portion, however, you will be treated to amazing views and an experience you'll never forget. Bring bottled water and LOTS of film.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 20, 2002
Great Wall (万里长城)
North Of Beijing City
+86 (0)10 6912 1235
Attraction | "Street and Other Markets"
Many of the goods in markets have fallen off the truck. These are legitimate goods obtained through illigtimate means. How they were obtained is not your problem. All you need to worry about is getting the best deal. Check first for any flaws in the product and work your deal.
Many other products are copies of various quality. Some of these are very good and may meet your standards. Others are so bad they make great gag gifts. I came home with more than one Ralex watch. Look carefully and don't take any claims at face value.
There are many much more interesting things to spend money on in Beijing. These are the things you won't find at home, even in the best China Town. Look for things that will bring back special memories. For me, that was a very inexpensive end-piece for roof tiling. It reflected the careful detail in Chinese art and architecture.
When you've found something worth buying, it's time to get the right price. Never pay the first price proposed. Bargain hard. When you get near a price you like, ask to have smaller items thrown in for free. Be creative. Just be careful not to insult the vendor. Be realistic. Be ready to walk away. You'll very likely get called back and given exactly what you want.
Throughout the City
San Jose, California