Historical evidence shows that Beijing has been in existence for over 3,000 years. However, the discovery of “Peking Man”, an ancestor of Homo sapiens who lived in the area 200,000 to 400,000 years ago, shows that the area has a history of human habitation that is very ancient indeed.
Life in Beijing
Day or night the streets of Beijing are generally safe.
Despite its size, Beijing is a very safe city and its people are generally friendly and helpful. Violent crime is extremely rare, however, Beijing has its fair share of scams and touts, centered around the main tourist sites of Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall.
Beijing has excellent transport facilities. In addition to an extensive public bus system, Beijing’s subway is very convenient and constantly expanding, yet the fare is very inexpensive. Both subway and bus routes are incorporated into Google Maps, which provides a helpful tool for people to travel around. Traffic runs rather smoothly except during peak hours in the morning and evening.
The quickest and most economical way to travel short and medium distances is by bicycle. Most roads in Beijing have a separate lane for bikes, allowing a cyclist to zoom past the traffic during peak hours.
Visitors to Beijing should have no problem finding accommodations as there is no shortage of hotels and hostels. Whether you’re an executive looking to stay in a star-rated luxury hotel such as Hilton or Radisson, or a backpacker on a budget, you can always find something suitable.
Rent for a one or two bedroom apartment in Beijing typically ranges from RMB 1000 to 3000 yuan per month, depending on the location. Rent is usually paid three months in advance, negotiable with the landlord.
Beijing is the cultural center. There are nightly performances of traditional Chinese operas, acrobatics, and folk art such as crosstalk and storytelling. Each year, Beijing hosts many international cultural activities such as performances of pop and rock stars, classical music, jazz, movies and operas.
Not far from Frontiers is Beijing’s premier nightlife and entertainment area known as “Sanlitun Bar Street”. The area extends from the north gate of the Workers’ Stadium to the west gate of Chaoyang Park and covers Nuren Jie (Women’s Street), where revelers party at all hours of the night.
Beijing is a gourmand’s delight as every major style of Chinese cuisine is represented by the capital’s thousands of restaurants. So, adventurous diners can taste around the country without ever leaving the city! With restaurants representing every corner of mainland China, it would be possible to live in Beijing for years and never eat at the same place twice. On top of this, there are many excellent restaurants serving every kind of international food to suit all tastes and budgets.