The ancient Chinese Temple of Heaven complex consists of beautiful parklands and the "only" round temples in Beijing, The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests and the Imperial Vault of Heaven. These wooden buildings were built during the Ming Dynasty in 1420 and have magnificent round blue roof's and ornate interiors. There was also the lovely cool Long Corridor,marble gates, other buildings and a circular ceremonial Altar Mound. A really lovely complex covering 273 acres with masses of grass and trees right in the bustling city of Beijing; fully understand why Alec and Helen enjoy it. The extra hour I lost would have been well spent investigating this complex further. Beijing certainly has some great parks and green space areas. The alarm to head back went off at 11.30 am and it was hot footed back to the subway and return to the hotel. We had a late check out, so showered, changed and ready for the taxi to the airport by 1 pm.
Now we have had some good drivers so far in China, but I can certainly say this was not one of them. All over the place, in and out of lanes constantly and just wandering in the middle of two lines frequently. Sped up, slowed down, really crazy driving but we eventually got to the airport and were glad to get out.
Check in and customs were relatively quick and painless, except for the rude woman pushing in on Jane's line and being told by security to go back. Other than that no trouble and after the little train to terminal 3, we had time for a bit of food, lousy coffee and a look around some not very exciting shops. The Singapore Airlines SQ807 flight was on time and this time downstairs in the A380 seats 44J & K. No sooner in the air than seats in front of us both back as far as possible ( why me, continually). Other than that a good flight to Singapore where we had a short stopover, but with enough time for the lounge and a glass of vino. Then back onto the final flight (SQ255) back to Brisbane at 0030 hours ( with more lovely people with fully reclining seats in front @#$$%%^&^ ) on the A350-900. Not as much room between seats on this plane so was a bit squeezed even with the reclining, but the nine hours went fairly well and we finally arrived back into sunny Brisbane. I stupidly left my passport on the seat as we got off so had to wait until ALL passengers had alighted before being able to get it back and get to the duty free shop for the Whisky purchases. Bit of a line up through customs but no bag checks and finally in a taxi (much better driver than the last one) and on the way home getting there around midday. All in all an excellent trip with some fond memories. Would I return to China, you betcha. Much better than expected and certainly way more left to see.
Landed and home