Sunday, February 14, 2016

Beijing: Siheyuan and Peking Duck

27-28 Jan 2016

Yet another short working trip to Beijing at the same venue. This time, after work, we headed out to the hutong (alleys formed by lines of siheyuan, traditional courtyard residences) again, via the Metro. We exited at the Shichahai station. We took the rickshaw hutong tour which cost CNY 80 and I didn't undestand a word the rickshaw cyclist/ driver was telling us. Luckily Farah acted as my translator. We also stopped by a siheyuan with entry ticket of CNY 20. Farah told me about an interesting fact of the door to the traditional houses. The more hexagonal panels displayed above the door, the higher the rank of the occupant. More interesting facts on the siheyuan can be found here. The hutong tour lasted about 40 minutes, with the driver expecting some tips at the end of the tour.

the rickshaw

hutong tour map

navigating through the hutong

Xiaoxangfeng hutong
entrance to one of the siheyuans
roof of the siheyuan

courtyard of the siheyuan

inside the siheyuan

the door or 'flower hung gate'. this one has 4 panels above the door

view of siheyuan by the hutong

Prince Kung mansion is closed

At the nearby frozen lake, Beijing citizens were seen happily skating away, not on their skating blades, but rather on chairs or bicycles, quite amusing ;)

frozen lake
frozen lake at Shichahai

skating on chairs

We also walked to the nearby Drum Tower and snapped some pictures. Close to the Drum Tower is the Bell Tower. In the old days, they were used to tell the time. More facts can be found here.

Drum Tower near Shichahai

For this trip, we also tried some halal old Beijing food - the Peking duck, beef dumplings and pancakes at the Hongbinlou restaurant. We took the Metro to Chegongzhuang station and walked from there. The peking duck (half duck) cost CNY 120 with the portion suitable for 2 persons. It is served with vegetables (zucchini and onion), spring roll skin (looks like the unfried popiah skin) and dipping sauce. You dip the duck slice with the sauce, then roll it in the skin with the vegetables.

Hongbinlou restaurant facade

peking duck and condiments
dip and roll it

beef dumpling - dip it with vinegar


Thank you yet again Beijing for the short but delightful experience (although this time the weather was cold and hazy).



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