Beijing & Wellbeing
The routinely highlighted historical sites, city tours, and nightlife in Beijing more often than not drown out the wealth of health customs practiced around the capital for generations, keeping the secrets of Chinese longevity and health just that — secrets.
A visit to Beijing offers insight into Chinese traditional healing, treatments, and cuisine that make Beijing not just the capital of the country, but also a center of wellbeing.
Sample the Alternatives
Visitors to Beijing have countless options if hoping to enrich their travel experiences and health. Acupuncture treatments not only relieve stress, promote blood circulation and help weight loss, but are so common place that they won't put a hole in your budget. Acupuncture shops can be found around Houhai or nestled in a foreigner friendly Hutong.
After a tour of Tian'anmen Square why not stop by one of the many nearby traditional Chinese pharmacies. Free health assessments from a traditional Chinese medicine doctor are offered up with a side of advice and ginseng, tea treatments, Buddhist beads, and countless other treatments for what ails you.
Tai chi was born in China, and Beijing keeps the tradition alive and well. Interested visitors can just join in on the thousands of practitioners at sunrise around Tian'anmen Square, the Summer Palace, or nearly any park in the city. This medically-proven stress reliever promotes deep breathing, muscle relaxation and flexibility.
Beijing is a not just a cuisine heaven, but also a vegetarian's paradise. The most ravenous of steak enthusiasts are often left saying "I can't believe it's not meat". The sautéed mushrooms and simmered tofu could fool customers into thinking their chewing on a quarter pound of beef.
The variety of greens in Beijing expands far beyond salads. Try a vegetarian hotpot, one of the hundreds of vegetable soups or the long list of bean dishes: bean soups, bean porridge, and let's not forget the literally thousands of tofu dishes. For vegetarians that indulge in fresh fish the famed Barbequed Fish Restaurant and Diaoyutai Restaurant are favorites of foreign diplomats including Hilary Clinton. With the plethora of options visitors can go vegetarian for days and honestly not notice.
After a Great Wall hike or a tour of the Forbidden City there is nothing better than a spa treatment in a Sanlitun or Wangfujing health resort. Whether it's a private establishment or a hotel service there is nothing better than indulging in the comforts of Chinese hot springs for your pores, cupping therapy to mobilize blood flow or their internationally renowned masseuses whose fingers tap dance over every muscle and nerve. With experienced and bilingual staff the only difficulty tourists encounter is choosing from a foot massage or massage by foot.
You'll Be Coming Back for More
Many tourists return from Beijing looking and feeling younger and healthier than before. So come for sights and stay for the insight into Eastern medicine. The healthy, yet exquisite cuisines and pampering are sure to have you coming back for more. Contact us to include any of the above in your trip.
I updated this article on March 10, 2014
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