Day 14: Beijing

April 24, 2010

We slept in this morning, then decided to have lunch at Huang Ting, the Peninsula’s Cantonese restaurant. We took advantage of their weekend dim sum buffet – nearly 40 items, as much as we wanted – and enjoyed a great lunch of spring rolls, dumplings, fried noodles, and more.

Delicious dim sum lunch at Peninsula

Finishing our shopping was the goal of today, so we took a taxi to Panjiayuan Antique Market, an enormous open-air flea market with over 3000 vendors. Furniture, jewelry, statues, trinkets, silk, you name it – it was here, and we had a great time walking around and bargaining some good prices for a variety of items.

Panjiayuan Market in southeast Beijing


Quite an assortment of statues


Waiting for customers

The amount of stuff for sale was staggering; there were marble lions the size of small cars, a ton of Mao paraphernalia, beautiful Tibetan furniture, a huge book bazaar, and piles of beads in every color imaginable. Around 5:00, the market began to close down, with vendors boxing up their wares and loading them onto the backs of their bicycle carts. This was one-stop-shopping at its finest.

Lots of Mao-themed items


Don't try to pick these up - you can't


This kid was ready for the camera


Endless stalls

We managed to hail a cab among the departing bicycle carts and dropped off our purchases back at the hotel before heading back out for dinner. We stopped at a department store where I bought a Chinese-style cleaver similar to the one we used at the Yangshuo cooking class.

Walking to dinner

Then we headed back to Da Dong, where we had a reservation for one more delicious roast duck dinner. This time we sat by the open kitchen, watching the roasted ducks come out of the fire. Our meal was as good as it had been the other night, and this time we ordered a dessert we’d seen at another table: fruit “dandelions”, sugar-coated fruits surrounded by a “fluff” of cotton candy.

Roasting the world-famous ducks


One last great meal in China


Cool fruit "dandelions" for dessert

We walked back to the hotel to start packing and see if we’d bought so many souvenirs we’d need another bag. Tomorrow morning is our last chance to shop, and Matt swears he saw someone eating a McDonalds banana pie, so we might have to go check that out, too… 🙂

6 Responses to “Day 14: Beijing”

  1. What a wonderful last two days you have had! The pictures(as well as the narration) of the great wall were absolutely wonderful(Matthew, you have to be happy with your camera!) And it was nice to see you with sunshine in the background! Oh yes- the caps are cool!! Anyway, glad you have enjoyed all the wonderful food and shopping…can’t wait to hear more about your experiences once you are safely back home. Considering the time difference – you are probably already on your way. Thanks again for sharing this wonderful travelogue blog! Hugs, mom

  2. Hip-hip hur-ray for a great trip and blog!

    Love, DAD

  3. We also are sad to see the trip come to an end. It was all so personal and warm and educational and soooooooo delicious! There were so many things I would have bought at the shopping market just from looking at your pictures; cant’s wait to see what you bought. It’s going to take me a few days to stop thinking of you guys 13 hours ahead of us. Glad you had a chance to sample the food at the Pennisula. Talk to you soon. Love, Mom and Dad

  4. We loved the pictures of the Great Wall! We’re also sad that your trip has ended! We’re looking forward to seeing all the pictures you took. Looks and sounds like you had a great trip and we feel so lucky that you shared it with us. Love, Aunt Kathy, Uncle Mark, Mandy & Drew

  5. Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us. I appreciate the time that you spent on the blog. Amazing pictures and great descriptive narrative. This trip was obviously well planned. You are both very adventuresome and created great memories.
    Karen Witz

  6. What an awesome trip! Thank you for including me in your wonderful adventures. Michael and I would love to travel with the two of you someday. I can’t wait to see all of your pictures.

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