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City of the month: Beijing

City of the month: Beijing

The dramatic changes that China is experiencing are nowhere more apparent than in Beijing. In the capital, imperial palaces and temples still stand side-by-side with grey, functional buildings from the mid-20th century. But within just a few years Beijing has reinvented itself – for example in a business district whose skyscrapers and colourful illuminated architecture testify to China’s new prosperity. For the 2008 Olympic Games, further daring buildings such as the ‘Bird’s Nest’ stadium and the blue ‘Water Cube’ were erected in the Olympic Park.

Thanks to its countless sights, the city has something for everyone. You can enjoy the best view at a height of 238 metres from the viewing platform of the television tower. From here you can see across to the Summer Palace and the Forbidden City. If you want to escape the crowds in the city’s tourist hotspots, you can join the couples, strollers and Tai-Chi enthusiasts in Beijing’s spacious parks. In the evening, you can start by wandering through the hutongs – narrow alleyways in the old town lined with single-storey houses – then dive into the lively nightlife around the lakes and the Drum Tower district.

City of the month: Beijing

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