Last week, we decided to make the most of the Mid-Autumn Festival weekend by making our way up to Beijing for three days. It was quite a busy weekend and we definitely weren’t the only ones with that idea! But definitely worth it.
On Fridays we finish teaching at 11:15am, so we wanted to take advantage of that by leaving Dongying early. Unfortunately, even though we arrived at the bus terminal by 12:30, we could only get a bus ticket for 15:30. The Dongying Central Bus Terminal is lacking in food options, but we found a KFC and wasted some time there.
The 3 hour wait was a drag because the station was very warm!!
Above are the bus journey’s possible from Dongying (within the Shandong Province).
Padkos (“road-food”) for the bus trip.
Our bus tickets.
Eager to get to Beijing… 🙂
We arrived at 9pm, and our boss picked us up from the bus terminal. Him, and his wife, drove us to our hostel, and wrote down as many things as we might need, in Mandarin. This was very helpful, especially for the journey back home!!
Happy Chopsticks Hostel
We stayed at the “Happy Chopsticks” hostel. It was located in Bao Chao Hutong. We couldn’t have picked a better hostel because everything was in walking distance, and the atmosphere in the area was great at night!
Not wanting to waste our first night in Beijing, we made our way out to explore the famous Beijing hutongs (alleyways). Most of them are filled with people, food, and shops, at anytime of the day, or night.
Chicken skewers – 3 for 10 yuan (US $1,50)
So far, pointing, and smiling, seems to work for us. We haven’t learnt much Mandarin yet!
After an hour, or two of walking, we settled down at the Backwards Bar, for a couple of beers.
Early the next morning, we made our way out to start exploring Beijing.
Golou, the drum tower of Beijing (left) was a short walk from our hostel on Di’anmen Street. It was originally built for musical reasons, but now it is just a tourist attraction.
We didn’t have an exact destination point…
We just walked and walked and walked.
Di’anmen Department store.
Chinese McDonald’s sign 🙂
This was when it started pouring down with rain… so we started searching for umbrellas!
The Fire-Fiend Temple.
Justin on Jinding Bridge looking over at Wanning Bridge.
The Fire-Fiend Temple.
Thankful for our Umbrellas!!
More Christmas decorations?!?
Dancing in the rain
We walked for a long time down Di’anmennei Dajie.
Crawling Chinese Soldier toys
Left, look at that mess of wires!
More of Beijing’s Hutongs…
Fresh breads, buns and other baked goods. It smelt really good around this store!
Hhhhm… Rock paper scissors for which way we should go!
There are plenty of fancy (expensive) restaurants in Beijing.
These pots contain what is called “Beijing Old Yogurt” – A straw is pushed through the paper on top of the ceramic bottle. Apparently the yogurt tastes like a thick milkshake, but tangy with a refreshing tartness of the live and active cultures that make the yogurt very good for you. If you leave the bottle behind, you pay less for the yogurt. I will have to try one of these soon to see how good they are.
Left, A little shop called, Vampire in Beijing, where you can buy “blood” (juice in IV bags), and
Right, just outside the “blood supplying” window, was a sign saying “JESUS LOVES YOU”
Eight hours of walking in Beijing is exhausting!!
After resting our feet at the hostel, we changed and headed out to grab some dinner. There were unlimited food options but we tried to find a place that had pictures and/ or English menus.
Dinner at Jin Gui Gui Xiao Shan Cheng.
Kung Pao Chicken and a pan of fried meat, potatoes and vegetables.
Our food was DELICIOUS!
Planning our next day over some cold beers.
Cheers! To Happiness!
A message for us on the way back to the hostel.
Great times in Bejing.
More adventures tomorrow.