After hours of combing through our archives, we feature some places worth a visit over the holiday period to get the most out of Beijing before the cold has us shuddering at the thought of having to go outside. These place are action packed and hopefully the weather and air quality index permit a day out. Avoid the crowds at places like Tiananmen as even walking 200 meters will take an eternity.
Enormous not only in size, but also in educational fun, the China Science and Technology Museum 中国科技馆 will satisfy the thinker in children and adults alike. You can easily spend up an afternoon walking through four themed floors and nine different galleries. Once you’ve had your fill of the museum itself, check out the massive children’s play center Science Paradise. Containing countless hands-on exhibits and displays, the museum provides children with a healthy mix of information and entertainment that will leave them wanting to know more. Mind-boggling exhibits and topics on the third and fourth floors can even kindle the Einstein in parents as well. Perfect on cold and dreary winter’s day, the museum is a fun indoor haven for the whole family.
After emerging from the Olympic Green subway exit (Line 8), make your way northeast through the Olympic Green park towards the museum, a rectangular white building. The west entrance of the China Science and Technology Museum lies just off Datun Beilu. Purchase your tickets at the outdoor ticket booth or opt for the automated ticket machines (in Chinese only) once you enter through the main door. If you have young children, make note of the neon sign reading “Science Paradise” to your left, as you may want to return to this immense play center later.
he busiest gallery in the museum is The Glory of China (1). Check out ancient Chinese technological innovations, taking in the technology of looms, plows, iron casting and more. Kids can turn a life-size waterwheel and watch the powerful effects. While en route, admire the sailing ship commandeered by legendary Chinese admiral Zheng He. Take the small wooden set of stairs adjacent to the ship up to the traditional Chinese medicine exhibit. There, inspect models of diseased tongues and acupuncture charts. Head back down the stairs and keep looping around the circular path to discover the astronomy exhibit, where kids can gaze upon the stars. After fulfilling their astronomical aspirations, head to the age of ancient scientific exploration. Experiment with Pascal’s Triangle, Tangram puzzles, and blocks. Don’t spend too much time puzzling these conundrums though, as you have three more floors to scale.
Continue to find out what’s in store you here.
Check out the museum’s cinema review here.
Photo: Oscar Holland