EAT, DRINK, EXPLORE: BEIJING
Peking duck (shāo yāzi) has been eaten in Beijing since the Imperial Era and is the city’s most famous dish to date. The meat is characterized by its juicy, tender texture and thin, crispy skin and served in thick slices with a side of steamed pancakes, cucumber sticks, spring onions, and sweet bean sauce. Traditionally, meat is piled onto a warm pancake and eaten like a wrap. The cucumber sticks can be rolled into the pancake or used to cleanse your palette between wraps.
Originating in northeastern China, soybeans are commonly used to produce doujiang (soy milk). Considered a staple in traditional oriental breakfasts, doujiang is made by soaking dry soybeans in water overnight. The swollen beans are then blended into a liquid and strained into a cloth-lined colander until all of the “milk” drains out. The Chinese drink doujiang sweet, by adding sugar or simple syrup, or savory by mixing it with chopped spring onions, pickled mustard greens, cilantro, shallots, vinegar, soy sauce, and/or chili oil. When it comes to doujiang order it as you prefer - hot, cold, sweet, or savory!
China is home to one of the seven wonders of the modern world: The Great Wall of China - a series of fortifications built to protect the country’s border. Construction began in the 7th century and lasted more than 2,500 years. Exploring all 13,171 miles of it would be a feat but you can easily tour a chunk of it while in Beijing. Nine sections, spanning 356 miles, can be viewed including: Badaling, Juyongguan, Huanghuacheng, Jiankou, Mutianyu, Gubeikou, Jinshanling, Simatai, and Huangyaguan. Depending on which section you choose, it will take up to 3 hours to reach by car. Well worth the investment considering The Great Wall of China is the longest structure ever built by humans.