v Editor's Words

As the national holiday of Golden Week races towards us, Beijingers brace themselves for the hordes of visitors who always accompany it. Chinese from the vast breadth of the country seize the one week holiday to visit the capital, adding a particular crush to local life. Beijingers also seize this time to escape from the grey confines of downtown and, you know, get reacquainted with Mother Nature.

CRI presents you with a handful of destinations where you can avoid most of the crowds, deeply inhale the fresh air, and slow down enough to fully appreciate autumn's onset.

• Health Bridge Wetland: Not Just for the Birds
• Beigong Forest Park: Easy Escape
• Jingdong Grand Canyon: Grand In Its Own Way
• The Schoolhouse at Mutianyu: Beautifully Balancing Tradition and Luxury
• Lingshui: A Charming Study of History
This small town is about a thousand years old, and the heady scent of history permeates its plastered rock walls, generations-old homes, and massive ancient trees.
• Lingshan Mountain: The Highest of Beijing's Heights
It's Beijing's highest peak, and it doesn't fail to provide the stunning vistas worthy of that title.
• Shuiyu: Definitely Out of the City
Shuiyu is one of those towns that is wonderful to visit precisely because it's not much of a tourist destination.