Family visit – Part 1 Beijing
An Internship in China can give you so many opportunities in business experience and in travel. For those who are staying long term like me – it is very nice when you have the opportunity for family and friends to visit; You can take a break and just enjoy China as a tourist and view it from different eyes. I arrived in early April and was warmly welcomed by the InternChina team. My parents really supported my decision to do a marketing internship in Qingdao and promised they would pop by and visit me in the summer holidays. Once I was settled and confirmed to my mum the ‘no everything is fine, and yes my apartment is livable’ speech, it was just left to them to book their tickets…
Last Thursday I took the train to Beijing, arrived in the afternoon and settled in the hotel. Picking up my parents from Beijing airport the next day was surprisingly easy – Beijing has the second largest airport in the world, but as long as you know what terminal you want to go, the signs are easy to spot. Seeing my parents at the airport was pretty magical, after almost five months they were very happy to see me. With the heavy sense of jet lag and slight initial culture shock, I showed my parents around a busy shopping street and let them explore. For dinner we had a delicious Beijing duck with pancakes, sauce and spring onions – then it was time to rest for the day ahead.
The main activity we did this weekend was of course the Great Wall of China. We took a day trip from the hotel which took us to the sacred way of the Ming tombs. Our next stop was a Jade Museum which was beautiful and many members of staff showed us around the factory explaining how Jade is carved, testing the quality. I found a fantastic ring that I tried on but with the 5,000RMB price tag, I had to leave it behind. *Cry Cry
The main attraction for the day was obviously the great wall; Mutyianu is one of the most beautiful parts of the wall. However, at 35 degrees, I was more than sweating up the stairs but managed to take some beautiful photos and also read a bit about the history. On our way back we also went to a silk museum where again they showed us the production of the silk thread and all the beautiful products.
On the Saturday we also went to summer palace. This is one of the most beautiful touristic parks in Beijing – famous dating back to hundred of years ago. A little bit of advice for anyone coming to Summer palace or generally anywhere with many tourists, avoid going there on a weekend as there are thousands of people and it can get very crowded and hot. I managed to barter my way into wearing some traditional garments for 20 RMB and my dad quickly took some snaps.
For dinner, we chose to complete a Chinese cooking class in a Hutong area near Lama Temple. If you want to know- it’s called Mama’s Lunch. Joyce our teacher gave us some beautiful green tea and slowly explained the ancient culture of dumpling making. Unfortunately my dough was way too doughy but hey – it still created tasty dumplings! We were also taught how to make traditional pulled noodles which was created from similar dough as the dumplings. After the hours of rolling, pulling and making, we were allowed to sit back with a bear and enjoy our delicious creations.
After only a mere three days in Beijing it was time to go home and enjoy the next part of our trip – Shanghai….(See part 2 this week)
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