it’s getting hot in here, so head to the beach in downtown Beijing!

Yup, breaking away from general geekiness for a moment! It’s summer time y’all and it’s getting pretty darn hot in Beijing! With temperatures like these, I need to get me to the beach, lay down and soak the sun on some golden sand and jump into some crystal clear water!
“yeah, right” I was told… get over it, you’re in Beijing… closest sand & water combo is a few hours away!

WRONG!!!

closest sand & water combo, depending on where you live in the city is within a 5 to 20mn ride or a 2 mn walk from the Hou Jia Lou subway station on line 10… yup, it’s there and I got the pictures to prove it.

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I’ve been hearing about this misterious, almost mythical, place for years now and been way to busy to investigate the rumors… a beach in downtown Beijing? no way…. WAYYYYYYY… When it got hot enough and I wanted a quick easy dip and a lazy afternoon, I got off my couch, sat at the computer and started googling! and guess what i found?

This little gem hides inside Tuan Jie Hu park, across from Oakwood center off of the 3rd ring road in Beijing. This inconspicuous little gates on the outside hide a marvel of a park complete with lakes, boats, bumper cars, skating ring and more importantly, an artificial wave pool with real sand!

behind these gates lies artificial paradise

behind these gates lies artificial paradise

how about that? 15 little minutes walking for Sanlitun… It costs 25 RMB to get in the pool area where they have a chuan’r stand as well as reasonably priced cold beers and soft drinks. Lockers, showers and toilets are available on the premisces! The place is decked out with 2 slides, an artificial wave pool, a swimming pool and a few smaller mini pools to just sit in the water.

I went there on a sunday afternoon when everyone was busy working to make up for another one of those bridge days during the dragon boat festival. It was quite enjoyable and empty but I can imagine it being jam-packed on the weekend depending on the hour.

oh yeah, the water was CLEAN

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I also tried my luck at the yellow pedal boats and took them for a spin around the lake which was quite a little enjoyable affair and cost about 30RMB for the run around.

Beijing-style mini yacht

Beijing-style mini yacht

So, if you have nothing better to do and it’s one of those geougeous blue sky days we’ve been having, get yourself over there and soak it up… it’s just sureal and a good reminder of how quirky, weird and surprising Beijing can be:

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Tuan Jie Hu Park links and maps:
团结湖公园 Tuan Jie Hu Gong Yuan
朝阳区团结湖南里16号 Cháoyángqū Tuánjiéhú Nán Lǐ 16 Hào
To get to the pool, walk towards the center of the park with the skating ring

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