Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Olympic Park, Kung Fu, and Food! - Beijing, China (Day 1)

After about four hours touring the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square, it was time for lunch!  Afterwards we went briefly to the Olympic Park, before the tour disembarked back at our hotel.  My wife and I would go out again to see a (very touristy) kung fu performance at a local theatre.  Here are some photos of the end of Day 1.

My wife approaches the restaurant.  No English on the door = darn good food.

They were set up for our party of about 40 people.

The Lazy Susan was the name of the game.

Not a bad place whatsoever.

These meatballs were unexpected, and delicious.  American Chinese food, eat yer heart out.

This first meal ended up being one of the most memorable of the entire trip.  I'd recommend the place if I only knew what it was called and how to find it!

I unfortunately brought the wrong lens with me to the Olympic Park.  The only way I could fit the Beijing National Stadium ("Bird's Nest") into the frame was to be as far back as I was.

Otherwise all of the shots end up looking like this.

Ling Long Pagoda, which houses a broadcasting center.

We officially entered the Beijing Olympic Park through security.

A look back towards town, with something akin to the Forbidden City in the distance.  Notice the air quality decreasing.

This IBM building is curiously designed.

Get your Mao icons, while they're hot!

The Beijing National Aquatics Center, aka the "Water Cube."

Bird's Nest

Beijing traffic wasn't too bad at that hour.

One last look at the Bird's Nest.

The observation tower behind Ling Long Pagoda looked like something out of Blade Runner.

The Water Cube

Overview of the area.

Suz found a funky sculpture.

That night it was time for kung fu.  It may not have been Shaolin, but it was still cool.

Almost as cool was the theatre exterior.

This screen was all we could see for 30 minutes (we got there early to buy tickets).

Photography wasn't allowed, but I risked it to get this shot.  They demonstrated how sharp the spears were before they did this by stabbing melons with them.

Those are three blades on the floor.  They lowered him onto the blades, and then basically started piling things on top of him.  Of course he was fine, but good gravy.

Day 2 in China featured a tour of the Ming Tombs area and the Badaling section of the Great Wall.  Stay tuned.

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