2018 Travel Plans: Beijing, China

China has been at the top of my bucket list for awhile. I tentatively planned to visit in 2016, but things fell through and I ended up going to Sydney, Australia instead. Well, I've finally made good on my promise to get back. Elizabeth and I are all booked to go to Beijing in April!

I've always been really intrigued by the Great Wall of China. How on God's green earth did an ancient civilization build such a massive wall? It's one of those landmarks I've been dying to see in person.

  IMAGE COURTESY OF HISTORY.COM

IMAGE COURTESY OF HISTORY.COM

The best part about traveling to China is that I have ZERO experience with Chinese culture. One of my favorite things about traveling is showing up in a new country with no idea what to expect. Aside from visiting my local Chinese restaurant for an order of orange chicken and fried rice, I've got nothing. Picturing myself navigating Beijing with no Mandarin experience makes me chuckle.

This is actually the first international trip I've booked without using any miles or points. I found some great round-trip economy fares from Omaha to Beijing on Delta for $653. Even though I'm not overly thrilled to spend 13 hours in economy, at least I get to fly Delta's brand new A350!

  IMAGE COURTESY OF NEWS.DELTA.COM

IMAGE COURTESY OF NEWS.DELTA.COM

Even though I didn't use any miles or points, I still had one trick up my sleeve. I used $150 worth of Delta gift cards I got from my airline fee credit on my American Express Platinum Card. In the end, my total out of pocket expense was $1,156.

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As for accommodations, I've booked a room at the JW Marriott Hotel Beijing Central. Hotels in Beijing are relatively cheap so I only paid $175 a night for our four night stay.

  IMAGE COURTESY OF MARRIOTT.COM

IMAGE COURTESY OF MARRIOTT.COM

  IMAGE COURTESY OF MARRIOTT.COM

IMAGE COURTESY OF MARRIOTT.COM

From what I've gathered this hotel has a great location, the photos of the property look nice and the reviews I've read have all been good. This will be my first stay at the JW Marriott brand, so I'm interested to see what the luxury side of the Marriott portfolio is like.

All-In-All

I know I've got a couple of months to go, but I'm still really excited to go to China for the first time! I really hope the Great Wall of China is as cool in person as it is in the pictures. If you've ever been to Beijing, please don't hesitate to give me some suggestions!

Who's been to Beijing?! What're your suggestions for me?