Day two in Beijing we headed to Tiananmen Square and toured through the Forbidden City. Like with the Great Wall, I was blown away by the size and detail. It just seemed to continue on, and you couldn’t see the end because you walked through multiple sets of gates. Our tour guide for our entire time in Beijing carried around a green umbrella for us to follow, which was better than the groups that all wore matching hats the entire time.
One of my friends who is half Chinese and had visited China before, warned us that we would get stared at a lot due to our lighter skin, hair colors including blond and redheaded, and our on average taller heights. Not only did we get stared at, but we caught multiple people taking photographs of us. To cut down on how awkward we felt, we began asking them if they wanted photos with us. At Tiananmen Square we ran into some European men and took a huge photo with them, the roughly 30 of us on the trip, and random Chinese people.
From Tiananmen Square we headed straight to the train station. We took the bullet train to Tianjin. At the time the train was relatively new, and one of my Chinese friends not on the trip was most jealous about us getting to take the bullet train over the rest of our itinerary.