My time in Beijing was pretty relaxed. I knew that I would be coming back at some point, so didn’t have to rush around all of the tourist sites in panic. On my second day in Beijing, I decided to go to explore the Hutongs and thee back lakes (Houhai 后海).
We got there quite early at around 9am on a Sunday, which you don’t actually need to do as nothing was open! We walked around the Hutongs and lakes for a while before we happened to stumble across a street food market, leading to the main tourist area of the lake, which was perfect because we were pretty hungry by that point!
The main road was full of bicycle tours for tourists around the lakes and Hutongs (which I didn’t actually do due to lack of time and funds but would next time). It was a busy, tourist-filled area with the tour drivers shouting out “Hello! You are beautiful! Where are you from?”
I’d completely recommend spending at least an afternoon exploring the different streets. There’s a good selection of street food, shops and array of houses that are interesting to see. After finding a coffee shop to regenerate, we had a walk around the rest of the lakes and stumbled across a Temple. I always enjoy looking around temples and this one especially was quite picturesque and free to enter.
After feeling satisfied that we had explored the streets and surrounding areas, we headed back to the hostel. The girls I had befriended were heading home that day, so I decided to walk around the souvineer streets around my hostel and Tiananmen Square before heading back to the Wanfujing Night Market with my new American roommates. This time I tried a small section of a Seahorse tail. I wouldn’t recommend it.