The scale of this city is the first thing that strikes you. It’s huge with over 20 million inhabitants.
At a local level though, small compact communities gather for morning tai chi and buy fruit, vegetables and bread and chat over a cup of tea.
Today we saw the grandeur and pomp of Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. This area known as The Dragons Artery is the birthplace of the current nation. Tens of thousands flock here daily to pay their respects to The Chairman and see how the old emperors lived in lavish decadence.
Our guide Eddie is not unlike the Aussie version, he has the gift of the gab but knows his facts and figures. He’s a good guide in an unfamiliar setting.
The food here is fresh, tasty and abundant. I’ll put in weight if I eat everything on offer! The beer is not bad either.
Eddie convinces us of the merits of the Golden Mask Dynasty, a big production daily show. We are not disappointed with front row centre and feeling the breeze as the acrobatic dancers perform amazing dance feats. Well worth the $60AUD admission.
Our hotel, The Zhongle is six star. With claw foot bath, complementary slippers and 2.5 metre wide bed it lives up to its rating.
The air quality is good today, we don’t need the gas mask supplied by the hotel. Even still, people have chesty coughs and the men spit where it’s legal. This is Beijing.
Off the The Great Wall next, which we are very much looking forward to. Bye bye.