Beijing in the snow is a beautiful city. Heavy snowfalls sometimes hit Beijing, creating a fascinating snowy landscape, especially in the historical area of the city. Here we would like to recommend the top ten places for you to enjoy the snow in Beijing.
Without the hustle and bustle of tourists in winter, it is great to walk peacefully in the Forbidden City on a fine snowy afternoon. To get there, take the subway to Tiananmen East or West station or take bus No. 101, 103, 109 or 111.
There are several places with good views in the Forbidden City, such as the Meridian Gate Square, the Southeast Corner Tower out from Donghuamen (东华门) and the hill in Jingshan Park (景山公园) behind the Forbidden City.
The Summer Palace has the best of all the snow views from all over the city. To get there, take subway Line 4 and get off at Beigongmen (北宫门). Or get off at Xiyuan (西苑) and walk along Tongqing Street (同庆街) for 500 meters to the west, and then you’ll arrive at Donggongmen (东宫门).
The gates are open from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and the parks inside the Summer Palace are open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
The Meridian Gate, also called Wumen (午门), is the main gate of the Forbidden City on the south to north axis. Because the Meridian Line passes through it, the gate was named Wumen.
The Southeast Corner Tower is out from Donghuamen (东华门).
Located to the north of the Forbidden City, Jingshan Park is in the center of Beijing’s downtown area. It used to be deserted before the Yuan Dynasty (1206—1368) and then was used as an imperial garden during the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties.
We suggest setting aside one to two hours for touring the park. Tickets are 10 yuan for adults, 5 yuan for students and free for seniors. The hours are from 6:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. To get there, take bus No. 111 or 124 to the Jingshan Park stop for the East Gate, bus No. 5 or 609 to the Xiban Bridge (西板桥) stop for the West Gate, or bus No. 101, 103, 109, 124, 609, 614, 619 or 685 to the Forbidden City and then switch to Special Bus Line 1 from the Forbidden City to Jingshan Park for the South Gate.
The old buildings covered by snow in Hutongs behind Houhai are more special than any other times. the snow scenery offers the real taste of old Beijing. It couldn't be a better choice to enjoy the Beijing Hot Pot in Hutongs after a cold stay outside. Take a sip of drink and chat with your friends in the Bar Street in Houhai is also a good way to spend the leisure time.
Yanqing (延庆) is always a good place to see ice lanterns and enjoy the winter landscape. In the daytime, you can walk along the valley to enjoy the snowy scenery on both sides, and at night you can enjoy the colorful ice lanterns. Longqingxia is great to take kids with you, but watch out. If it is very crowded, it’s better to watch from the outside rather than get in the crowds.
When it snows, it’s great to find an old temple and slow down your pace of life. You can sweep the snow in the yards with the monks to return your heart and body back to the simple life. Tanzhe Temple is the most suitable temple to view wintry landscapes near Beijing, firstly because it is not far from downtown at only about 40 kilometers. Secondly, it is a millennium-old ancient temple with many pagodas and grand old trees, which provide an extremely quiet and beautiful environment when it snows.
You can imagine how magnificent it is when it snows at the Great Wall. The sections of the Great Wall in Gubeikou and Jiankou have much better snowy landscapes than other areas, as both are wild sections of the Wall. You can really feel the tracks of history when snow falls on the Wall. However, while it is great for photography, getting to Jiankou is not so convenient. Gubeikou is just off Jingcheng Highway (京承公路), however, so if you just want to watch the snow, Gubeikou is highly recommended. Here you can see the mixed snow views of the Great Wall, Wohu Mountain (卧虎山) and Panlong Mountain (蟠龙山) without too much difficulty.
The biggest attraction to Taoyuanxiangu is that you can play interesting ice games here. Taoyuanxiangu has the best-developed site for ice climbing, which is climbing up an ice wall made by a frozen waterfall. The site is not only spectacular to see, but also provides ice-climbing clothes and equipment. Ice climbing is easy to handle compared with other ice activities, and it is really adventurous and thrilling.