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Tai Chi with Swords at the Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

 

Photo of the Day – Tai Chi with Swords at the Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

The Temple of Heaven is the most interesting people watching park in the world. It is full of couples dancing, individuals playing different games, and groups doing Tai Chi. With all of this in mind, I was a bit thrown off to see a group of middle-aged people wielding swords as they performed graceful Tai Chi routines.

This group would have been fantastic to have on your side in the middle ages.

Tai Chi with Swords at the Temple of Heaven - Beijing, China
 

The Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

 

Photo of the Day – The Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

The Temple of Heaven is located in the southeaster part of Beijing and contains several buildings and acres of park. The temple is striking with its traditional Taoist style and is very easy on the eyes with its circular nature. The temple is the center-piece for the park, but to be honest, I found the people watching much more interesting. The Temple of Heaven Park is certainly worth your time and there is no doubt that you’ll stumble upon this specific temple while you’re there.

The Temple of Heaven - Beijing, China
 

Chinese Tango Parade – Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

 

Photo of the Day – Chinese Tango Parade – Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

I’ve posted before about the fascinating local Chinese culture that you can observe on a visit to the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, China. On the same morning that I captured an elderly woman’s morning ritual, I also ran into a large group of Chinese locals parading down the street Tango Style!

An early morning visit to this park is an absolute must on your first trip to Beijing. Sure it isn’t as famous or impressive as the Forbidden City, Great Wall, Summer Palace, Tiananmen Square or the Olympic Park, but I promise that your current impression of who the Chinese are will change forever after you feel the happy and relaxed atmosphere created by the thousands gathered in the park.

Chinese Tango Parade - Temple of Heaven - Beijing, China
 

Morning Exercise Routine – Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

 

Photo of the Day – Morning Exercise Routine – Temple of Heaven – Beijing, China

The Temple of Heaven is often regarded as one of the Top 250 places to visit in the world. Personally it doesn’t do a whole lot for me. I’ve visited the temple twice and I find the buildings to be rather dull and unimpressive on a global scale (the Top 250 is a rather prestigious list). For me it probably just gets lost amongst the other amazing sites in Beijing – Forbidden City, Great Wall, Summer Palace, Tiananmen Square, Olympic Park and more!

While I am not in the love with the temple itself, the surrounding grounds offer a fascinating view of local Chinese culture. Every morning thousands of elderly Chinese gather in the temple parks to partake in a series of activities together. Organized group tango dancing, sword fighting, and painting sidewalks with water were all popular ways to enjoy the morning among friends. Those who weren’t into group activities would get lost in the surrounding trees and perform these deep, individual morning exercises. I caught this lady midway through her weekly Saturday morning ritual.

Morning Exercise Routine - Temple of Heaven - Beijing, China
 
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The Top 100 Places in the World
1 Great Wall of China
2 Pyramids of Egypt
3 Machu Picchu
4 Serengeti Migration
5 Galapagos Islands
6 Grand Canyon
7 Angkor Temples
8 Antarctica Cruise
9 Taj Mahal
10 Iguazu Falls
11 Amazon Rain Forest
12 Great Barrier Reef
13 Bora Bora
14 Victoria Falls
15 Bagan
16 Petra
17 Potala Palace
18 Karnak
19 Mt Everest
20 Cappadocia
21 St Peters Basilica
22 Fjords of Norway
23 Jerusalem Old City
24 Burj Khalifa
25 Borobudur
26 Forbidden City
27 Kashmir Valley
28 Li River Cruise
29 Ladakh
30 Alhambra
31 Louvre Museum
32 Perito Moreno Glac.
33 Banaue Terraces
34 Colosseum of Rome
35 Easter Island
36 Venice Canals/Alleys
37 Kathmandu Valley
38 Wat Phra Kaew
39 Yellowstone NP
40 Pompeii
41 Rio Panoramic View
42 Palace of Versailles
43 Dubrovnik
44 Golden Temple
45 St. Basils Cathedral
46 Vatican Museum
47 Florence Cityscape
48 Acropolis
49 Amalfi Coast Drive
50 Kremlin
51 Hong Kong View
52 TerraCotta Warriors
53 Mezquita Cordoba
54 Chichen Itza
55 Damascus Old City
56 Shwedagon Stupa
57 Sahara Desert
58 Mont St Michel
59 St. Marks Square
60 Egyptian Museum
61 Hagia Sophia
62 Angel Falls
63 Delphi
64 Teotihuacan
65 Baalbek
66 Banff NP
67 Santorini
68 Matterhorn
69 New York Skyline
70 Neuschwanstein
71 Chartres Cathedral
72 British Museum
73 Prague Old Town
74 Burj al Arab
75 Yangtze River Cruise
76 Yosemite NP
77 Hermitage Museum
78 Torres del Paine
79 Chambord Chateau
80 Lijiang
81 Portofino
82 Great Ocean Road
83 Tongariro Alpine
84 Las Vegas Strip
85 Tikal
86 Topkapi Palace
87 Sydney Opera House
88 Eiffel Tower
89 Luxor Temple
90 Kerala Backwaters
91 Golden Gate Bridge
92 Cinque Terre
93 Metropolitan Mus
94 Uffizi Gallery
95 Ayers Rock
96 Cliffs of Moher
97 Pacific Coast Hwy
98 Shanghai Skyline
99 Glacier Bay NP
100 Wulingyuan
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