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How would you split these up into three days

by nomad7890 Online Now Sep 6, 2008 at 6:45 PM

Looks like I'll be able to fly out after all. I have three full days in Beijing and I am listing the sights I would like to see. I am making some guesstimates for the length of time for some places. How would you skip these? Only thing, I would prefer to do the wall on the second day, for half a day. Don't want to leave it for last, but want to get another night's rest before going. Also looks like it may rain. Here are the places - please excuse any spelling problems. If there is a place you'd skip, please let me know

- Tianamen Square 2 hrs (or should it be 1 hr for square, 3 for Forbidden City)
- Forbidden City 2 hrs
- Beihai Park 2 hrs
- Gulou and Zhonglow (Drum and Bell Towers) - look at hutongs from Zhonglou ?
- Great Wall Mutianyu 1/2 day
- Beihai Park [which of these parks is better for people watching in AM } 2 hr
- Summer Palace 4 hours
- Ditan Gongyuan (Park of the earth) -2 hours
- Temple of Heaven 2 hours
- Wangfuying Street 2 hours
- Dongnan Jiaolou (south corner tower) 1/2 hour
- Yonghegong (Temple of the Lamas)
- Fayuan Si 1/2 hour

Look forward to your suggestions/additions/deletions

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41 Answers
  • nomad7890's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by nomad7890 Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 6:17 AM

    This is priceless Sharrie, thank you ... I will try the concierge again. Hopefully he won't refer me back to Destinations China! aggh!

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    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by Sharrie Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 7:20 AM

    Oh, one more note about that acrobatic show. There's one in Shanghai as well and I've seen it with my Aussie friend a few years ago. It's good. You don't need to cram everything in Beijing. Leave that for Shanghai if you've more time in Shanghai.

    When in Shanghai, make sure you go on a day trip to one of the watertown around Shanghai. There are at least 4 or 5 around which you can go on a day trip. Zhujiajiao (closest), Zhouzhuang, Tongli (where there's a sex museum), Xitang, etc.. If you need help with a private car, I can give you the number to call. There's a driver whom I used to call for day trips to these places. He works with hotel guests mostly and can speak English. Nice chap.

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  • nomad7890's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by nomad7890 Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 7:29 AM

    While on this thread ... concerned over what to wear.

    I am taking a nice outfit for dinners - but otherwise I have casual wear. I will be taking my hiking boots, which are compact per hiking boot standards but I plan to wear them on the trip so they don't take up all the luggage.

    Overall, for five days not counting travel time:

    3 casual slacks
    5 tops
    -possibly a sporty jacket
    -wind-breaker type foldable jacket
    -nice dressier walking shoes (I have used these in a conference)

    Weather is supposed to be high 50 F to mid 70 F - and rain only for Wednesday.

    Questions:

    - Will it be OK to wear the hiking boots into one of the nice Starwood's in Beijing?

    - How is the weather in Beijing - dry and cool in the afternoons like in California, or hot throughout like in Florida (I'm leaning to more like in California)

    All comments welcome!

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  • Sharrie's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by Sharrie Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 7:38 AM

    I think it's still too hot for boots!

    I just checked Beijing weather. The high for wednesday is still 30 deg. C (that's from the local weather site)! That's 80s in F. By the way, China as with Canada uses Centigrade. The lows in the night is in the early 70s, or best late 60s!

    It is ok to be casual as most hotels will know you are a tourists. Except perhaps for dinner in pricey restaurants. There are quite a few both in Beijing and Shanghai if you are planning on visiting. There's a Jean Georges here in Shanghai as well.

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    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by nomad7890 Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 7:52 AM

    Thanks again Sharrie - I think the last posts criss-crossed.
    This time I am getting back to work, or I will be working until very late in the day as there are some things that must get done before the trip.

    I need to straigthen out all these tours tonight or early tomorrow when I confirm my flights. Thank you for offering the driver. I'm already thinking about the second trip! So much to see!

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  • Sharrie's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by Sharrie Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 7:54 AM

    It's very dry in Beijing. When it's very hot, it can be stuffy.
    Bring some hand cream and also sun block.

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    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by nomad7890 Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 8:37 AM

    A couple of other checks on phone and ATM pins.

    Cell Phone:
    I have a Nokia phone I use in Europe with T-Mobil service. The T-Mobil site states there is roaming service with China Mobile and China Unicom. I plan to use the phone once a day to call home, and only for emergency, so right now I don't think it's worth the trouble to get a SIM card -
    Am I correct to assume I should be able to use my cell?

    ATM pin numbers:
    Some time back I heard some ATM pins required six digits - mine all have four. Is this an issue? I have a VISA "ATM", and a bank ATM with many of the world wide networks. Do I need to worry about passwords - or only remembering them? ;=)

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  • MikeySoft's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by MikeySoft Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 8:42 AM

    I've used an ATM debit card with a 4 digits pin at Bank of China and never had a problem, My card is a visa debit with the PLUS logo.

    If you can use your GSM phone in Europe, i would think you could in China. I've always got a SIM card in china so I'm not speaking from experience. Is your phone unlocked incase you decide to change your mind and get a SIM card?

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  • Sharrie's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by Sharrie Online Now Sep 9, 2008 at 9:10 AM

    I'm assuming your phone is a GSM phone with a SIM card already in it. In that case, even IF you've roaming services, it is still worthwhile to get a Chinese SIM card as it is way cheaper than paying for your roaming charges. If you can find out how much your network charges you for auto-roaming in china, that's best. My experience is that with a local SIM card, you only need to pay as low as 1/10 of the charge per minute although in Beijing, it is also not cheap to call out of the country. The system is a bit strange... calls out of Beijing to US is a lot more expensive than say if they are out of Shanghai! Are u with Verizon or AT & T? I've seen toll free numbers via AT & T from hotels in Beijing. I figured you will be billed in the U.S. if you use its services. It may be cheaper, I have no idea how the U.S. bills for auto-roaming.

    As for the ATM, if you have Citibank card, brings it. Citibank doesn't charge for withdrawing from its own ATMs and there are quite a few Citibank ATMs in both Beijing & Shanghai. U do have to pay for exchange fluctuations, but that's all.

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  • nomad7890's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by nomad7890 Online Now Sep 25, 2008 at 5:34 AM

    Thanks for all posts! I have already returned. China was spectacular!

    I had a driver and guide the first two days. Part of the Forbidden City was closed apparently due to an important visitor, so we did most sightseeing the first day. I went to an acrobat show on my own the second night, then I had a person assigned by the concierge accompany me shopping and showed me how to use the metro. It was excellent! I used the expensive hotel pickup the first day, which was just what I needed: being whisked out of the airport in Beijing, met by the concierge downstairs and being taken straight to my room where the concierge checked me in. Worth the extra money when you come in from a long flight and change of planes in Shanghai!

    Shanghai I ended up doing by myself by taxi - I got the taxi process down packed! Get in quick before stating where you're going so they don't say "no", and have it all written clearly. The "personal butler" accompanied me back to the airport in case I had any issues finding the Maglev station - I could not afford to make any mistakes going back.

    Loved Shanghai and Beijing! Hope to go back to other places next year.

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  • SPW's Profile Photo

    Re: How would you split these up into three days

    by SPW Online Now Sep 25, 2008 at 8:45 PM

    I'm glad you had a good time and are looking forward to a return trip.
    Cheers,
    Sue

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