Tips for Touring Beijing with Kids

Although incense-filled temples and ancient buildings may not, at first glance, seem child-friendly, Beijing's historic sites do offer some unique and special activities for the young. The Summer Palace is a great place for kids to run around and go splashing in paddleboats; the old Summer Palace has a fun maze; Tiananmen Square is a popular spot to fly kites; the Drum Tower holds percussion performances; and the Temple of Heaven's Echo Wall offers up some unusual acoustical fun. Budding astronomers might also be intrigued by the Ancient Observatory, with its Ming Dynasty star map and early heaven-gazing devices built by early Jesuit missionaries who worked for the imperial court. Wherever you go, remember this: Chinese kids are generally allowed to run around and act like children, so don't worry that your own tyke's behavior will be disapproved of.

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