Shunyi has some wonderful hidden gems. Right on our doorstep, you can enjoy bird watching, taking in the sights and smells of nature. There’s no better way to do escape the hustle and bustle of Beijing than to take a day trip out to the wetlands, a park, or a farm. For most of these sites, the only things you’ll need are a picnic, a camera, and a sense of adventure. These outings are a great way to teach kids –and yourself – a bit about nature and the environment.
Hanshiqiao Wetland Nature Reserve Park
Great for bird watching, this nature reserve is full of wildlife and wonderful scenery. The park is the only remaining natural reed marsh in Beijing, with 292 species of wild plants and 153 species of birds. You can rent bikes and go for a scenic cycle ride around the park. For RMB 140 per hour, you can also hire a boat and take a leisurely trip around the reserve. Other activities include fishing, bird watching, and paintball.
Daily 7am-7pm, with bike and boat rentals from 9am-5pm. Hanshiqiao Village, Yangzhen Area, Shunyi District (6141 1200) 顺义杨镇地区汉石桥村
Beijing International Flower Port 北京顺义国际鲜花港
Four square kilometers filled with dozens of species and thousands of varieties of flowers, this flower farm specializes in growing and breeding flowers. Highlights include the Cherry Avenue, lined with beautiful cherry trees, the pond area with water plants, and the fruit picking sites.
RMB 20. Daily 9am-5pm. Hongsi Village, Yang Zhen, Shunyi District 顺义区杨镇红寺村
Agrilandia Italian Farm
The farm grows more than 60 varieties of fruits and vegetables to provide organic produce for the farm’s restaurant. Visitors can also pick their own produce. The restaurant serves a great range of Italian dishes, with super pastas and handmade pizzas. There is a large lawn area great for the kids to run around on, and if you don’t fancy the restaurant you could just bring a picnic. There are farm animals to pet, including goats, sheep, ducks, and peacocks.
Daily 10am-10pm. Baigezhuangcun, Mapozhen, Shunyi District (6940 7700, 130 0127 1094) 顺义区马坡镇白各庄村
Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park 北京奥林匹克水上公园
This park was the venue used for the rowing, canoeing, and 10km open-water swimming events in the 2008 Summer Olympic Games. After the games, the venue was converted into an attractive recreation and swimming resort, and is a great place to spend a few hours just enjoying the peace and quiet.
Daily 9.30am-6pm. Beixiaoying Town (Take Jingshun Lu and turn east onto Baima Lu, about 24km from Wuyuan Qiao; follow signs and keep driving for about 4km. Shunyi District (6940 5821) 顺义区 (走京顺路，在距离五元桥大约24公里的白马路路口右转，前行4公里即到
beijingkids Shunyi Correspondent Sally Wilson moved to Beijing in 2010 from the UK with her husband and son. Her daughter was born here in 2011 and both her kids keep her happily busy. In her spare time, Sally loves to stroll through Beijing’s hutongs and parks. She is a (most of the time) keen runner and loves reading: books, magazines, news, and celeb websites – anything really. Sally is also a bit of a foodie and loves trying out new restaurants.
Photos courtesy of Sharon Mollerus (Flickr and Sally Wilson.