There are two holidays in China that allow all citizens to have a full week off from work and school. These holidays are the mid-autumn festival and the China national day. Mid-autumn festival is a fall lunar festival and the national day represents the day that China became the People's Republic of China from Chairman Mao in 1969.
Baba's parents arrived on the Thursday before the holiday week and two days later were on a fast-train to Beijing (5 hours and $85). The activities in Beijing included:
The Great Wall of China;
The Summer Palace;
The Bird's Nest and The Cube (Beijing Olympics);
The antique market;
The pearl market;
The hutongs (old homes);
The Forbidden City;
Tianemen Square; and
The City Wall museum.
I'll add more photos from the other sites but this entry will be about the Great Wall trip. We went to the location of Mutianyu, which is about 1.5 hours away from Beijing and is known to be much less crowded than the closer points. It was a beautiful day but the stairs were too much for my mom.
|Chairlift to the wall|
|The Wall travelers. The Yings with Baba's parents.|
|They start you coming down the wall stairs.|
We agreed that the Great Wall of China would be better named the 'Great Stairs of China'.
|Then they have you go up this very steep sloping stairs. Grandma had to pause after this climb area. The rest of us went to the end of the restored area.|
|A look back from the highest point.|
|Yangmei, Yu gege, Yanyuan and Caomei.|
|This is Mongolia. Yuyuan and I had to trek into Mongolia (off the wall) without a passport to go take a pee. We learned that Mongolian bathrooms are really smelly...|
|These were the steep stairs behind them.|
|This slide was the way down the hill! It was great fun.|
|Here is the token picture with the toothless Mongolians. For $3, it was worth it.|