Friday, December 02, 2011

Beijing Hutong Pedicab Tours

A number of companies now offer tours of Beijing's hutong by pedicab. The narrow street's of Beijing's hutong are not really suitable for cars, making pedicabs and bicycles the best and most environmentally sound way of seeing them.


Beijing hutong pedicab tours usually take in the Drum Tower, Prince Gong's Mansion, a Siheyuan (traditional Chinese courtyard house), Lama Temple and Pipe Tobacco Alley close to the Bell Tower. There is usually a stop for a drink at a hutong cafe or teahouse.


A number of large Chinese tour companies offer pedicab half day and full day tours.



© Beijing-Visitor.com

Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Christmas Services at Churches in Hong Kong

With more Christian churches than any other city in China, Hong Kong has a special Christmas atmosphere. In both Hong Kong and Macau, Christmas Day is a public holiday, though Christmas Day in not a public holiday in mainland China.

Hong Kong's department stores and shops go into overdrive in the run up to Christmas and the Christmas lights of Victoria will be shining throughout December.

The large number of Christian migrant workers from The Philippines are often enthusiastic church-goers.


Here are a list of churches in Hong Kong with Christmas services and Christmas mass.

St John's Cathedral
24th December - Christmas Eve

5.00pm Christingle Service
6:00pm Cantonese Service
11.30pm Midnight Mass

25th December - Christmas Day

8.00am Said Eucharist
9.00am Sung Eucharist
10.30am Holy Eucharist (Mandarin)
11.45am All Age Worship with Eucharist
2.00pm Sung Eucharist (Pilipino)
6.00pm Evensong

Emmanuel, Pokfulam, Bethanie, 139 Pokfulam Road

11.00pm Midnight Mass
25th December - Christmas Day
11.00am Family Eucharist with Carols

St Stephen's Chapel, Stanley, St Stephen's College

Discovery Bay Church, SKH Wei Lun Primary School

St Andrews Church

24 December
Christmas Eve Services
7:00pm* 9:00pm 11:00pm

25 December
Christmas Day Communion Services
8:30am 9:45am 11:30am 2:00pm* 5:00pm

* Services in Putonghua

Hong Kong Catholic Cathedral of The Immaculate Conception, 16 Caine Road, Hong Kong

Rosary Church, 125 Chatham Road South, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon

St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Tsing Yi Island

Christ the Worker Parish

Kowloon International Baptist Church, 300 Junction Road, Kowloon Tong, Kowloon

Island Evangelical Community Church
633 King's Road, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong (Quarry Bay MTR Exit C)

Watermark Community Church Upper Ground at Aspen Court, 46 High Street, Sai Ying Pun

Holy Trinity Cathedral
135, Ma Tau Chung Road, Kowloon City, Kowloon

Shatin Anglican Church, S.K.H. Tsang Shiu Tim Secondary School
Tak Hau Street, Wo Che Estate, Shatin, N.T.

Dec. 24 Candlelight Service Saturday 9pm
Dec. 25 God in a Manger Sunday 10am

Crown of Thorns' Church, 67 Texaco Road

© Beijing-Visitor.com

Hotels in Hong Kong
Hong Kong Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Beijing Visitor on Twitter

Follow Beijing Visitor on Twitter.



If you have a Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong or any China-related Twitter acount please follow Beijing Visitor on Twitter and we'll follow you right back.

We look forward to reading your tweets.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Calling Home From Beijing China

Whether you're in Beijing on business temporarily or permanently relocated to China’s capital, keeping in touch with your family back home is essential for curing homesickness. If you’re looking to call the US from Beijing, here are a few tips and tricks that will help you connect with your loved ones.

How to call the US from Beijing?
To call from China to the United States you have the dial the following sequence:
00 (prefix for international calls) + 1 (country code) + City code + Local Number

How to call Beijing from abroad?
China's international calling code is +86 while Beijing’s area code is 010. To call Beijing from anywhere in the world, simply use the following code:
011 (international code from the US, 00 for the UK) + 86 + 010 + Local number

Calling from and to Beijing cheaper
International calls can get very expensive if you’re calling from your regular landline or mobile, that is why you should consider other, more affordable options. Here are a few of the most commonly used tools by expats to call home
• IC cards or Integrated Circuit card can be found at any post office or most convenience stores and can be used mainly for local calls. It’s a good alternative to calls from your hotel or to roaming.
Prepaid phone cards are very versatile when it comes to calls to and from China. They can be used by your family back home and by you at lower rates than other offers on the market. The calling card can be purchased online, charging as little as 2cents per minute for international calls. You can even get some free calls if you act now.
• Skype and Google Talk are two good ways to call from PC to PC locally or internationally. However, if you have a slow internet connection, which is quite frequent in China, you will find it very hard to talk to your friends and family.
• Mobile phones are very common in China and can be very cost-effective as long as you get a local SIM. Try to avoid roaming as much as possible since it is generally very expensive for voice and data. Instead, use your mobile only for receiving calls and messages.

So what are you ways of calling abroad from Beijing?

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Mongolian Wrestling

Mongolian wrestling (Bökh) is considered one of the three traditional "manly skills" along with archery and horse-riding. Bökh has a long history as both a sport and as a means of combat training.

Visitors can see demonstrations of Mongolian wrestling in both Mongolia and Inner Mongolia in China.



Many wrestlers from Mongolia have gone on to have successful careers as sumo wrestlers in Japan. Sumo and Bökh have simularities in both style and traditions.

© Images of China Daniel Allen

Hotels in Beijing

Books on China and Beijing

China Cupid

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Tibetan Stupa in Western Sichuan

四川

Western Sichuan Province in China has many adherents of Tibetan Buddhism and stupas and prayer flags are ubiquitous in the region.


The Tibetan stupa or chorten is usually whitewashed and consists of three parts: the stepped base, the middle cylinder and the steeple. Each part has a significance to Buddhists.

Erecting a stupa results in gained merit and is seen as an act of the utmost devotion. Visitors should circle a stupa in a clockwise direction.

© Images of China Daniel Allen

Hotels in Beijing

Books on China and Beijing

China Cupid

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Beijing Subway Facts & Figures

Phase II of Beijing's subway Line 8 is on course to open at the end of the year part of the Chinese capital's massive investment in public transport.

The growth in subways in China's cities is remarkable. In 2006 there were only 10 lines throughout China, in 2010 there were 48 and this number is expected to double by 2015.

Presently 11 Chinese cities have subways including Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong with a further 33 cities in the building or planning stage.

Beijing subway now has 336km of subway track compared with London with 402km, Tokyo with 304km and Singapore 140km.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Friday, July 29, 2011

Bicycle Hire In Hangzhou

Getting around Hangzhou and West Lake is easy on a rental cycle.


There are a number of bicycle rental places in Hangzhou and rates are reasonable. You will be asked to provide a deposit.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Dragon Boat Festival Shanghai

端午节

Shanghai's Dragon Boat Festival (Duānwǔ Jié) occurs in May or June each year (the fifth day of the fifth lunar month).

Dragon Boat Festivals take place throughout China including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. The origins of the festival are obscure but legend has it that following the suicide by drowning of poet Qu Yuan in ancient China, people threw rice into the river to prevent the fish from eating his body and people paddled out in boats to retrieve the corpse.

The festival is associated with the eating of zongzi rice dumplings, which harks back to the rice thrown into the water to distract the fish keen to eat Qu Yuan.

The Whampoa Club in Shanghai will be offering rice dumplings to celebrate this year's Dragon Boat Festival. Available for pick up at RMB 188 per box.

© Beijing-Visitor.com


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Stanley Market Hong Kong

Stanley Market in Stanley on Hong Kong Island is a Hong Kong institution with lots of little shops and some good places to eat.

Stanley Market

Things to buy include silk and linen fabrics and clothes, t-shirts, sportswear, fruit & veg, cut flowers, cheap watches and electronics jewelry and lots of Hong Kong souvenirs.

Stanley Market

Access

From Exchange Square bus terminus in Central take bus #6, #6A, #6X or #260.

Stanley Market

© Beijing-Visitor.com



Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Home Inn Beijing

The Home Inn Beijing is part of a chain of Home Inn hotels in the Chinese capital.


The Home Inn pictured above is near the International Exhibition Center. Other Home Inns include the Home Inn Ciyunsi Bridge in Chaoyang, near the Central Business District & Silk Market. Functional, well located and clean the Home Inn chain is ideal for business and budget travelers to China.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Beijing Expat Show

The 4th Beijing Expat Show takes place at the World Trade Center from March 25-27.


The event includes a cuisine festival.

World Trade Center
No1 Jian Guo Men Wai Avenue
Beijing 100004




Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Juyongguan

居庸关

The Juyongguan section of the Great Wall is in Changping District, about 60 km from Beijing. Recently renovated, this section lacks the authenticity of other parts of the Great Wall, but still makes for an interesting day out.



Connected with Badaling in the north, the main feature is the heavily fortified Juyongguan Pass, which was one of the three great passes of the Great Wall (the other two were Jiayuguan and Shanhaiguan). The Juyongguan Pass has long acted as a military stronghold, serving as a natural barrier to invaders from the north.



The Juyongguan Great Wall comes down to the level of the parking lot in two locations, so no climbing or cable car is needed. Near the center of Juyongguan is a marble structure known as the Cloud Terrace, or Yuntai. This is a rare survivor from the Yuan Dynasty and was built in 1365. Among its exquisite carvings are a Dharani Sutra in six different languages: Chinese, Mongolian, Sanskrit, Tangut, Tibetan, and Uyghur.




Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Mutianyu

慕田峪

The Mutianyu section of the Great Wall, about 70 km north-east of Beijing, is a masterpiece of restoration, with 22 original style watchtowers.




Around 2 km in length, it is the longest fully-restored Great Wall section open to tourists. Winding over lofty mountains and high ridges, Mutianyu has a cable and wheeled toboggan ride which is fun for kids. Besides its strategically important location and compact layout, the Mutianyu Great Wall is also famous for the breathtakingly beautiful scenery, surrounded by woods on both sides.





Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Simatai

司马台

Simatai is the most spectacular and aesthetically pleasing section of the Great Wall. Simatai is a relatively short span (5.4 km) that is situated near the town of Gubeikou, roughly 120 km northeast of Beijing.


Great Wall of China

Like most of the other sections of the Great Wall, the Simatai section was refortified by General Qi Jiguang during the Ming Dynasty (CE 1368-1644).


Simatai

With 35 watchtowers it has the greatest number of watchtowers per kilometer than any other section. The extreme topography means steps are often very narrow and steep, making Simatai more suited to the adventurous and energetic.

Simatai, China



Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Badaling Great Wall of China

八达岭

Badaling is about 80 km from Beijing and is the most convenient place to view the Great Wall.

Admittedly Badaling is very touristy (the most visited section of the Great Wall, in fact), but it's easy to ignore that fact when you are confronted with one of the world's seven wonders.

Family friendly, Badaling has a cable car that will save you the walk to the top of the wall. There is a fee for the ride, but it's a great time saver, and the spectacular views as you rise will inspire photographers of all skill levels.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Monday, February 28, 2011

Hotel Kapok Wanfujing

The Hotel Kapok Wanfujing is like Ritz Carlton Hotel Financial Street, the Grand Hyatt Beijing, and the Shangri-La Beijing considered one of the top ten luxury hotels in Beijing.




Conveniently located in a quiet neighbourhood close to Wangfujing and the Forbidden City, this Chinese take on funky boutique wraps its distinctive milky-green latticed frame around a five-storey former government building. Designed by influential local architect Zhu Pei, the 89-room hotel flips the traditional hutong concept on its ear - re-working the system of courtyards and public spaces in the vertical for the modern-day traveller. Glass corridors wrap around a central courtyard leading to the 27 suites and 62 standard rooms, some with private pebble courtyards. Service can be sketchy, but great value considering the location.



Price per night: RMB 500+
Book the Hotel Kapok Wanfujing Beijing
16 Donghuamen Street
Dongcheng
Beijing



Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Shangri-La Beijing

Like the Ritz Carlton Hotel Financial Street and the Grand Hyatt Beijing, the Shangri-La Beijing is considered one of the top ten luxury hotels in Beijing.



Despite the Shangri-la's slightly inconvenient location and rather drab exterior this is more than made up for by luxurious rooms, sumptuous spa and easy access to Summer Palace and Western Hills.

Three great in-house restaurants, plus beautiful hotel garden with al fresco bar.

Price per night: RMB 1000 - 1800
Book the Shangri-la Beijing




Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Ritz Carlton Hotel Financial Street

The Ritz Carlton Hotel Financial Street caters to a corporate clientele but retains a homey feel - with the best beds in town.

Spacious marble bathrooms come with his-and-her sinks and televisions anchored in front of the bathtub. The basement health club and spa are top-notch. Upgrading to an executive room gives you access to a 24-hour club lounge, plus free WiFi. In-house restaurant Cepe serves the city's best upscale Italian fare. About 20 minutes to Tiananmen Square by metro.



Price per night: RMB 4500 - 8000
Nearest metro: Fuxingmen
Book the Ritz Carlton Financial Street



Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Monday, February 21, 2011

Grand Hyatt Beijing

Great location above Oriental Plaza Mall and close to Wangfujing, Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. Standard rooms are spacious and well-equipped, service second to none. The palatial lobby is a popular meeting place, with live music in the evenings. Some of Beijing's best eateries - including Noble Court and Made in China - can be found at the Grand Hyatt Beijing.



Price per night: RMB 3800

Nearest metro: Wangfujing

Book the Grand Hyatt Beijing




Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Peking Duck Recipes

Cooking Peking Duck properly is something of an art.


First the duck needs to be hung and correctly dried preferably in a natural environment though an electric fan can be used indoors.

Then bring a wok full of water with dissolved corn starch, spring onions, Chinese wine, ginger, honey, and vinegar to the boil. Baste the duck with the liquid and then leave to dry again for a number of hours.




When completely dry, the duck is roasted and turned for about one hour.

Peking duck is eaten with hoisin dipping sauce and small circular Mandarin pancakes or crepes.



Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Chinese Chess

象棋

Outdoor games of Chinese chess are a common sight in Beijing's hutongs and parks.


Chinese chess (Xiangqi) is an ancient game played between the black and red armies with 16 pieces per player with the object to checkmate the opposing "general".


© Daniel Allen & Beijing-Visitor


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing
China Cupid

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hong Kong Double Decker Buses

Like their counterparts in London, Hong Kong's fleet of double decker buses serve as massive advertising hoardings.


The above ad is known as L-Shape and costs HK$850 a week for a minimum booking period of 4 weeks.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Bank of China Building Hong Kong

The iconic Bank of China Building in the Central district of Hong Kong is a feature of Hong Kong's spectacular skyline.


The Bank of China Building (abbreviated as BOC Tower) was designed by the Chinese-American architect I. M. Pei and completed in 1989.

The tower is 315 m tall with two masts reaching 367.4 m. The building, which is the HQ of the Bank of China in Hong Kong, is the fourth highest skyscraper in Hong Kong. The International Commerce Centre, Two International Finance Centre and Central Plaza are all higher.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Noon Day Gun Causeway Bay Hong Kong

The firing of the Noon Day Gun in Causeway Bay in Hong Kong is a throwback to the territory's time as a British colony.

The Noon Day Gun, immortalized in Noel Coward's Mad Dogs and Englishmen, is fired each day at noon with some ceremony.


Noon Day Gun

The gun sits on the site of the first plot of land sold at public auction in Hong Kong, which was bought by the Jardine Matheson company in 1841.

Legend has it that the firing of the Jardine gun salute to the company's Taipan startled a senior British Naval Officer, who ordered that Jardines fired the gun every day at noon as a time signal.

The tradition has continued to this day, though the gun disappeared during the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong in the 1940s and was replaced in the 1960s by a smaller version, after complaints about the noise from local residents.

The firing of the gun is accompanied by the ringing of eight bells and since 1946 the gun also fires to welcome in the New Year.

The Noon Day gun is a short walk from Victoria Park.


Hotels in Beijing
China Job Search
Books on China and Beijing

Sunday, January 16, 2011