Beijing, the capital of China, offers the most modern architecture, infrastructure and technology alongside the historic and traditional aspects that make it an extraordinary city to experience. Visiting this fabulous city offers a taste of the cultural, economic success seen by the world during the remarkable and unforgettable Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. From the world famous Olympic “Bird’s Nest” stadium (China National Stadium) to the“ Forbidden City”, Beijing has a wealth of treasures for you to discover.
Beijing, which means «Northern Capital», is very well served by its international Capital Airport. Transport links to and from the city are equally well covered by either the train (Airport Express) which connects with the metro system or by taxi. It is recommended to only use the taxis from the official airport taxi rank.
Taxi fares between the World Assembly venue (Hotel Kunlun) and the city centre are approximately 35 yuan (approx USD 6) and, outside rush hour take about 30 minutes.
The Beijing metro is modern, clean, efficient and very safe. A single adult fare from the Hotel Kunlun to the city center sites such as Tian’anmen Square costs 2 yuan (approx 0.30 USD) and takes 30 minutes. All the metro signage and announcements on the trains are clearly given in Chinese and English.
Passports and Visas
A tourist visa is mandatory to enter China and can be obtained at Chinese embassies and consulates worldwide. A passport needs to be carried all the time, since it will be required when checking in at a hotel, buying a flight ticket or changing money. It is strongly recommended that you apply for your visa in good time as the process may take several weeks subject to administration procedures in your country.
Language Mandarin is the official language in the Chinese capital and is understood by most Chinese people. A large number of local young Chinese speak fluent English. Employees at star-rated hotels speak English. Pinyin, the Chinese phonetic system, helps to speak mandarin in a more accurate way that Chinese people understand. The local dialect in Beijing sounds quite close to mandarin because mandarin is based on the northern language in China.
Lying at almost the same latitude as New York City and Rome, Beijing has an average temperature of approximately 20 C / 68 F in September. Praised as a golden month, September is cool and brisk. It can still be warm in the afternoons, but it is delightfully cool in the mornings and evenings, especially with the refreshing breeze. The comfortable and clear weather renders September the best time to visit Beijing.
Renmibi (RMB) is the local currency in China. The basic currency unit is yuan, known popularly as "kuai" in colloquial language. One yuan equals 10 jiao or 100 fen. There are 8 paper notes in circulation: 100 yuan, 50 yuan, 20 yuan, 10 yuan, 5 yuan, 2 yuan, 1 yuan and 0.5 yuan (or 5 jiao).
GMT+8, Beijing Time is the benchmark time for all the regions and cities across the country, which actually covers four geographic time zones.
The electric current in China is 220 volt. Hotels generally provide power outlets accommodating both straight two-pin plug and triangular 3-pin Chinese plugs.
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