What to see and do on a Beijing layover

Got a layover in Beijing coming up? Wondering where to start? Beijing, China, is one of the largest and busiest cities in the world. As such, there is so much culture to soak up, history to learn and views to enjoy of both ancient and modern sites. And with a possible 72 hours of visa free entry to fill on a stopover, here are five activities to include in your Beijing layover bucket list.

The Great Wall of China at Sunset

Climb the Great Wall at sunset

What’s better than a romantic evening sunset stroll? The Great Wall of China extends up to 4,000 miles, so running out of walking paths isn’t a concern here! You can walk on the wall at sunset via the Mutianyu easy path or take a challenge through Jinshaling or Jiankou. Visitors can also walk via the Badaling section and buy several souvenirs to take back home for family and friends!

National Museum of China

Do you want to survey Chinese history? Well, visiting the National Museum of China is the best option to do so. Located at the edge of Tiananmen Square, you can be sure to find the nation’s past neatly outlined for you! For a comprehensive understanding and viewing of all artefacts and treasures, you need at least three hours with a guided tour to grasp everything. The best thing about it is that it is free to visit for both natives and foreigners.

Beijing Hutong

Rickshaw rides through the Hutongs

There is so much fun involved in riding a rickshaw, especially with friends. Pass through the Hutongs (narrow alleyways) and learn more about Beijing’s traditional glory. While on the rickshaw, see the contrast between the old and the new and catch a glimpse of the massive Beijing Olympic Stadium. Dug 36 metres below the surface for maximum support, the stadium is a sight to behold, along with it being a major site of modern historic value!

Dashanzi Art District

Art is serious business in Beijing! Dashanzi Art District hosts Factory 798, which is the epicentre of artistry in China. It’s located in an old warehouse, which gives it a vintage look and industrial-like vibes. While visiting the district, you can check out galleries, eateries, and cafés to relax, making it a one-stop-shop for everyone! Don’t forget to take lots of photographs in this colourful, youthful area for your Insta feed.

Beijing's Forbidden City - What to see and do on a Beijing layover

A visit to the Forbidden City

Being the largest ancient palatial structure on the planet, the Forbidden City is just one of China’s 55 Unesco World Heritage Sites. In order to avoid the crowds in the city, you should consider visiting with a knowledgeable tour guide. You get to learn about Chinese people’s history and culture, from their personal lives to the way they worshipped, all of which is just so fascinating and different from what we’re used to in the Western world.

The fact that Beijing is the capital city of China gives you the best travel experience. What’s more? All the activities mentioned above are achievable in one or two day trips. For maximum fun and enjoyment, carry your camera and capture the moments in Beijing, one of the oldest cities in the world!

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