The next day was our first full, entirely free day! So we got up super early to try and make the flag raising ceremony at Tiananmen Square but we were too late, sadly. That didn’t mean it wasn’t cold, no, it was apparently -15 degrees (celsius) and was supposedly the coldest it had been in years! And we were crazy enough to go to Tiananmen Square anyway to see Mao’s body, which is only open 9am-12pm and has really strict security. No bags or cameras and you have to take your hat off too (which I understand really…) and you had to have ID aswell. Despite that we made it through and had a look…it was…interesting, that’s for sure.
We decided to go to the Forbidden City after since we were there already, and most of us had been told it would take at least a day to go around. If you’ve got a student card from a Chinese University then use it! You get a special price 🙂 (it’s pretty cheap anyway).
This is near the front, it’s such a beautiful place and it’s so huge as well! Despite the cold weather there were still quite a lot of visitors but it wasn’t too bad. I can imagine it being very busy in the summer. We walked around most of it before deciding that we were all probably going to freeze but there were still some things we hadn’t seen, so I may go back in the future. It was definitely worth braving the cold though 🙂