Being one of the oldest cities in the world, Beijing has some iconic historical structures like the Great Wall and the Forbidden City. That being said, Beijing also has some of the most awe-inspiring skyscrapers in the world.
Beijing’s hi with tall buildings began with the National Minority Hotel in 1959. After a gradual increase in high-rise buildings in the next few decades, quite a few buildings have held the honor of being the tallest building in the city.
At the moment, the 81-storey China World Trade Centre Tower III is the tallest completed building in Beijing at 330 meters. Following this are two 63-storeyed structures, the Fortune Plaza Office Building 1 and the Park Hyatt Tower.
The Fortune Plaza Office Building 1 is 260 meters tall while the Park Hyatt Tower is 250 meters tall. The Park Hyatt tower is one of the three structures that make the Beijing Yintai Centre and has two 42-storeyed 186-meter tall skyscrapers on its sides.
The CCTV headquarters buildings are arguably more famous than the aforementioned buildings, thanks to their resemblance to “Big Shorts”. Though not the tallest, the CCTV headquarters is the second largest office building in the world – second only to the Pentagon!
One should also note that the CITIC tower is in the final stages of construction. Also known as China Zun, at 528 meters it will become the highest building in Beijing upon construction.
Lip-smacking Street food
Situated in Northern China, Beijing is the most populated capital city in the world. With high population comes the need for street food. And Beijing has certainly delivered in that department.
In recent times, because of pollution and food safety issues, the number of street food stalls in Beijing has been on the decline. Quick breakfast or munchies which were available in almost every corner of the city are now difficult to find. However, Wangfujing Street is one place where you definitely will find a good variety of street food.
The most well-known breakfast items are the jidan guangbing (eggs in a biscuit pancake), jianbing (street crepe), fried dough sticks, warm soy milk, skewered roast corns, and roasted chestnuts. A malatang (hot spicy soup) is usually consumed in the evening.
Chuanr (Skewered Meat) is very popular in Wangfujing Street. It is basically meat (most commonly lamb) cut into pieces and then roasted on skewers. Skewered scorpions are more of a tourist attraction than a delicacy. The silkworm pupae and the deep-fried starfish have medical importance in Chinese medicine.
Other noteworthy street snacks are the tanghulu (candied fruit), kaorou (lamb/pork kebab) sandwich, stinky tofu and, the donkey burgers.
Best Luxury Hotels in Beijing, China:
- Grand Millennium Beijing
- Hilton Beijing Capital Airport
- Shangri-La Hotel, Beijing
- Legendale Hotel Beijing
- Shangri-La’s China World Hotel
Awesome Gourmet food
Having looked at the street food, let’s move onto some impressive fancy dishes.
The Peking Roast Duck is the absolute must-try food of Beijing. Renowned for its crispy skin, and tender and juicy meat, it is usually consumed with savory pancakes with a filling of hoisin, cucumber, and spring onion. It tastes delightful on its own too!
The Beijing Mutton Hot pot is a specialty food of China. Wafer-thin mutton strips are served raw with a pot of boiling soup. The cook then cooks it for a few seconds in the soup and usually serves it with preserved bean curd, sesame sauce, leek flower, and sliced spring onion. With its origins dating back as far back in hi as the Yuan Dynasty, this is a truly imperial dish.
Zhajiangmian (noodles with soybean paste) consist of thick hand-pulled wheat noodles. The peculiarity of this dish is the Zhajiang sauce, which is slowly boiling stir-fried ground pork or beef with fermented soybean paste. The literal translation of Zhajiangmian is “fried sauce noodles”. Although popular all over Asia, Chinese Dumplings (Jiaozi) are genuinely considered to be from China. A dumpling is basically a thin dough filled with ground meat and vegetables. Usually, the filling includes vegetables and pork, beef or chicken. Dumplings are either steamed, boiled or pan-fried.
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