After our tour of Tian'anmen Square and the Forbidden City, we took a Rickshaw Ride through the town of Hutong to visit a local family for a homecooked meal. In the afternoon was a visit to the Temple of Heaven. The evening ended with a group dinner ( Peking Roast Duck ) and going to the theatre to watch the Kungfu Show.
The 7:00 am wake-up call came early after the long 13 hour flight from Delaware, U.S., but many were already up earlier with excitement to be in China! After a delicious breakfast with a great assortment of foods, we boarded the bus at 8:00 am and headed for The Great Wall! On the way, our tour guide, Demi, shared the rich history of the city of Beijing that dates back over 3,000 years.
Beginning with the First Emperor in 221 BC, we learned about the first millennia of imperial rule the Great Emperors and their Dynasties. Upon arrival, we took this group photo and then all of the students ventured off to climb the wall for nearly 2 hours, returning, in the rain, as “heros”. Some students found some beautiful souvenirs to purchase with their Yuan. We boarded the bus to the next stop, The Cloisonne Factory, where students toured the factory to see this magnificent, traditional Chinese art form of handcrafted copper wire, colorfully painted with enamel, then heated with the process repeated several times until complete.
On the second floor, another amazing meal was served to us on the round table, family style, with a little time left to shop.
Our next visit was to the Ming Tombs, which are actually a collection of mausoleums built by the Chinese Ming dynasty emperors. On our bus ride to this next location, we learned from Demi, our tour guide all about the Yongle Emperor and the thirteen tombs of 明十三陵; Míng Shísān Líng. A favorite part was learning how the site was chosen based on the principals of feng shui, by the third Ming dynasty emperor. Our last visit today was to the Bird’s Nest! Even though it was raining, students were happy to explore Bejing’s National Stadium, designed for use throughout the Summer Olympics and Paralypics in 2008. Finally, our day ended with a wonderful meal an authentic Chinese restaurant in Beijing.Tomorrow, we will start at 9 am and look forward to a full day at the Forbidden City and Tian'anmen Square.
Our second orientation, led by Dr. Xiao Liu, today was a success! We met at the Collette Center in Dover. Our four chaperone teachers, Kate, Justin, Lori, and Pamela helped to make it interactive and meaningful for students and their families. We set up our WeChat groups and students selected and discussed their project topics. Donations were made to plant a tree in China.
Everyone is very excited, as we secure our Visas, Passports, and other documentation in preparation for our travel abroad. This Blog tab is where we will share updates and photos from our daily itinerary. Also, we will be communicating and collaborating through the App, We Chat. Mrs. Chang has kindly shared a list of tips for travel. It is attached in the Documents tab. Keep checking back to see what we are learning!