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Category:Asia

Riding With A Criminal At The Temple of Heaven

A visit to The Temple of Heaven perfectly captures what life is like in China – line between legal and illegal isn’t always so clear.

 

Credit: Jabari Bell

Credit: Jabari Bell

The Temple of Heaven is one of the largest complexes in China. Chinese emperors considered themselves sons of the Heaven. As a sign of respect, the Temple of Heaven was built larger than The Forbidden City.

Many visitors crowd in and around the Circular Altar, where sacrifices were made every Winter Solstice in hopes of bringing good fortune and prosperity for the coming year.

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A Snow Day On The Great Wall of China

Best time to visit The Great Wall of China? Go in December to avoid the heat and the crowds. You’ll have the wall ALL to yourself.

 

Credit: Jabari Bell

Credit: Jabari Bell

I conquered 7,200 steps to the top of Taishan and trekked 4 hours around the West Lake in Hangzhou. Climbing The Great Wall? Sure, no problem! Except I forgot to factor in the high altitude and nearly freezing temperature. I huffed and puffed all the way up. Either my cardio was really bad or my cardio was…just…really bad.

The Great Wall is segmented into sections based on the difficulty of the route. I chose to climb Badaling, one of the less strenuous routes. Unfortunately, I still found myself lagging behind.

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Memories of Beijing

I’d bear the toxic air in Beijing for more memories like these. Next time, I’ll know to stock up on air-pollution masks.

 

Credit: Jabari Bell

Credit: Jabari Bell

There are a million and one posts about Beijing. They all talk about the The Forbidden City, The Temple of Heaven, The Great Wall, Summer Palace and Tiananmen Square, but what I remember most are not the attractions but my experiences.

Sprite in New York tastes ordinary. Sprite in Beijing? It tastes like magic. That bubbly sweetness makes my taste buds dance. And no matter how mind-numbingly cold it is outside, the Peking Duck always melts in your mouth.

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