Beijing, China & Seoul, Korea in 9 days
Beijing Travel Blog› entry 1 of 3 › view all entries
June 29th, 2009 – by: bodtkd
The Forbidden City or Imperial Palace is the largest ancient architectural complex in China. Construction began in 1407 and completed in 1420. 24 Emperors reigned there during the Ming & Qing Dynasties. The architecture & artwork is fascinating. All the roof tops are yellow (the color of royalty) & the walls are red (happiness).
Then in 1420, The Temple of Heaven was built for the emperors to worship heaven.
The list of destinations goes on. The Summer Palace and lake (built by hand) for the Emperor; Ming's Tomb; Shaolin School of Kung Fu; Keimyung University, where students are trained in the martial art of Tae Kwon Do; Golgusa Temple, the center for Sunmudo, the Zen Martial Art; Korean Folk Village; Kyunghee Gung Palace;
A visit to Beijing isn't complete without a stop at the mind boggling Great Wall of China. Taking 2000 years to build it stretches approximately 5,500 miles (unbelievable) from east to west. It's a magnificent structure that words and pictures don't do justice. Unfortunately only about 30% remains today due to forces of nature and the hand of mankind.
Also jam packed into this week were visits to the Chinese Circus, huge jewelry stores/factories around the cities selling pearls, jade, porcelain vases, amethysts. A rickshaw ride through old sections of Beijing, shopping and a local meal in someone's home, a stop for a 1/2 hour foot massage, a workout with the Tae Kwon Do students (also watched their demo), 4:30am prayer & meditation with monks, Kung Fu show/play.
This was a phenomenal cultural experience for all of us but please don't show me another bowl of rice or seaweed soup for a long time.
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