after breakfast, we left the hotel for another full day. our first stop was tiananmen square.
this is located at the heart of beijing and is considered as the largest city-central square in the world. the flag-raising ceremony at sunrise and flag-lowering ceremony at sunset are the most magnificent rites, which unfortunately we were not able to witness. it was a hot that day so we just took pictures around before heading to our next destination.
we walked a short distance to qianmen street. this street hosts a variety of high end shops and some shops that sells various items and trinkets which you could buy as pasalubong. there is also a tram which “tours” you through the street.
we did some shopping and pictorials here, but the main purpose of our trip here was to eat at one of the restaurants which serves the original peking duck. 😉 so off to quanjude we went.
we ordered veggies, rice, red bean cake and of course, the roasted duck. in most of the restaurants here, they serve the rice last so make sure that you ask your server to serve it to you once most of your dishes have already been served. plus, if you ask for water, you might likely get a warm glass of water. 😉
of course, the highlight of the meal was when the roast duck cart was parked in front of the table. one of the staff expertly carved the duck, separating some of the crunchy and yummy duck skin, and also slicing the duck meat thinly. traditionally, you wrap the duck in some sort of pita bread/pancake together with some cucumber/scallions and then you add hoisin sauce. the remaining duck meat, we ate together with our rice and veggies. 😀
our little boy even got a toy duck keychain which goes “quack, quack, quack” once you press the button at it’s side.
after we were full, we did some more shopping around the area. we were supposed to go to forbidden city that day, but since the time would not be enough, we decided to go to wangfujing instead. this is another shopping area which consisted of several shops/malls and also restaurants and fast food.
of course there was shopping involved and we also tried out some of the street food which beijing has to offer. some of them was too weird and exotic looking. i tried the strawberries/kiwis covered in hardened sugar syrup while hubby was more adventurous and tried out the fried baby scorpions. he said they tasted like baby crabs. 😉
on a side note, unlike here in the philippines, in beijing, the sun is still out at around 6pm. their 8pm still feels like our 5pm – 6pm here where in the sun is just starting to set. 🙂
another thing i observed is that they really give priority to the elderly/children. we rode a bus going to wangfujing street and we were standing inside. hubby was carrying matteo, and i was carrying the stroller. suddenly, the bus assistant was “shouting” angrily to one of the passengers and she was pointing to my hubby. we somehow understood that she was telling that passenger to stand up so that my hubby can take the seat since he was carrying our baby. so in the end, he got to sit down. 🙂
more of our beijing adventures next post.