Source and photos: http://horizons.free.fr/seikatsu/eng/memories/2007-07_cn-beijing.htm
I travelled to 北京 (Beijing, China) for the first time on 22-28 July 2007 to give two talks at the 12th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (aka HCII2007). During my stay, I visited the famous 天安门广场 (Tiananmen Square), 紫禁城 (Forbidden City), 天坛 (Temple of Heaven), and 北海公园 (Beihai Park). 超 (Chao), a Chinese classmate from 総合研究大学院大学 (Sokendai, Japan), took me in charge the first evening, and showed me 天安门广场 (Tiananmen Square) before telling me how to deal with the city and inviting me for a gorgeous dinner.
The city was extremely polluted, with grey fog on daytime and halos on street lamps at night, especially at 天安门广场 (Tiananmen Square), which is surrounded by incredible streets. The only patch of blue sky I noticed was above 天坛公园 (Temple of Heaven park), where lies 天坛 (Temple of Heaven), a UNESCO world heritage site that features 祈年殿 (Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests) and 圜丘坛 (Circular Mound Altar).
I quickly toured 紫禁城 (Forbidden City), another UNESCO world heritage site, with conference fellows but should return for the inside of the buildings. However, I fully enjoyed alone 雍和宮 (Lama Temple), the gigantic 北海公园 (Beihai Park) with its beautiful 九龙壁 (Nine-Dragon Screen) and 白塔 (White Dagoba), the historical 明城墙遗址公园 (Ming City Wall Ruins Park), and the exotic 王府井大街 (Wangfujing street), where I pondered whether to eat scorpions or not...