It is no secret that one of the things I love most about Beijing are its parks. There are plenty of them. Different from most parks in western countries. Less grass and more concrete but believe me: concrete pathways, lakes and Chinese architecture is a beautiful combination.
The parks in Beijing are not just there to look pretty. They are used by people of all ages, all walks of life and they especially come to life early in the morning and late in the afternoon. Activities vary from Tai Chi to opera singing, practising sword skills and playing Ma Jiang. It always touches me to see how the elderly come out and socialize. You do not need to know who's there to join in on a spot of Ma Jiang, "walk" your birds or practise Tai chi. You just join in and make new friends. One of the most lively parks I've visited in Beijing is the Tuanjiehu park. It is situated around 15 minutes walk from our apartment and is what I call a little gem surrounded by skyscrapers. When I walk into this park, I forget about traffic and the smoggy days and I remember one of the reasons why I looked forward to moving to China: the incomparable park atmosphere!
I took these pictures of Tuanjiehu park on two different occasions: a morning walk with my friend Berni and a morning walk alone (in the snow) 2 weeks ago. Enjoy!