Day 2: Forbidden City and Swiss Embassy

Our second day in China started with a typical Chinese breakfast which would be for Europeans more a lunch or dinner. After this cultural experience we drove to the biggest public area in the world: the Tian´anmen square. The government showed parades with millions of people but there were several incidents. The last one was in 1989, where thousands of people demonstrated for democracy, freedom of press, against corruption and censorship. At the end the army ended this demonstration with a massacre.

Afterwards we passed thousands of Chinese tourists to the entrance of the Forbidden City. It is the palace of the Chinese emperor Mao Tsetung. Around 1420 the buildings of the palace were finished. The palace was living and working place in the same time. The name of the “Forbidden City” is due to the reason that not everybody was allowed to enter the area of the palace. At the end of the Forbidden City is a beautiful park with trees that are more than 300 years old.

After we visited this amazing palace we climbed up a hill the so called “Kohlehügel”. On this hill is a beautiful temple where you have a great view over the Forbidden City. Unfortunately, due to the smog, we could not enjoy a perfect view but it was already a great view.

In the afternoon we had our first business meeting at the Swiss Embassy. The presenters spoke about the exchange programmes with Swiss students coming to China and Chinese students going to Switzerland. Furthermore we got information about how the Embassy helps companies to enter the Chinese market and how they support them. Finally a speaker presented us the military actions in China and surrounding countries (which are rather small).

After the interesting visit at the Swiss Embassy we could drive shortly back to our hotel. In the evening we met one more time to go to a typical Chinese opera. This event was a really special one and not comparable to an opera that we know from Europe. The building was of course in a Chinese style and the design inside was amazing. After some tea and snacks the opera started. The actors worn colourful costumes and had typical make up in their face. The music was as well very special and very loud. All in all, although we don´t speak any Chinese, we could understand that the opera was about love.

After the opera we had a last meeting of the day and some went to a restaurant for dinner and some directly to the hotel. Tomorrow will be an amazing day with a walk on the great wall.

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