61 Interesting and Fun Facts about Beijing

Ready to explore some interesting facts about Beijing, the capital of the People’s Republic of China? I got you as I have compiled a collection of some of the most interesting facts about the history, culture, development, and the people living in Beijing.

Do you know that The longest traffic jam in the world happened in Beijing and it lasted for about nine days? Keep reading to uncover more fascinating and unpopular facts about this interesting city.

1. Beijing is one of the oldest cities in the world and has a history of almost three millennia, its earliest record came from the travel notes by Marco Polo.

2. Beijing has changed its name about fifteen times and some of the names it bore before now were Zhongdu, Yanjing, and Jicheng.

3. In Beijing, the most popular surname in the city is Wang as about 11% of people in the city use Wang as their surname according to a survey.


4. The most famous food in Beijing is the parking deck which is made from the white Beijing duck.

5. Beijing houses the largest number of Fortune Global 500 companies in the world.

6. Beijing Capital International Airport is the second busiest airport in the world, providing services to over 100 million travelers every year.

7. Beijing is just as old as London, six times older than New York in the US, and ten times older than Sydney in Australia.

8. Beijing has the world’s seven UNESCO heritage sites and including the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, the Temple of Heaven, and others.

9. Beijing’s Bird’s Nest Stadium cost about $480 million to build and served as contentment of the 2008 Olympic Summer Games.

10. Beijing’s Bird’s Nest Stadium is the world’s biggest steel pattern and the most complicated stadium ever designed.

11. The longest traffic jam in the world happened in Beijing and it lasted for about nine days.

12. Beijing is the 2022 Olympic host and is set to be become the first city to host both the Summer and Winter Olympics in the year 2022.

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13. To qualify to purchase a car in Beijing, you have to win a “car lottery”.

14. The government of Beijing once banned 2.5 million cars in 2015 to get wonderful blue skies for a World War II parade.

15. One of the interesting things about Beijing is that breathing its air for six average days is the equivalent of smoking one cigarette.

16. Because of the overuse of groundwater for drinking by its massive population, Beijing is sinking at a rate of 4 inches per year.


17. The highest elevation in Beijing is Mount Ling and it stands at about 2,303 meters (7,556 feet).

18. The Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and the Red Cross Society of China have their headquarters in Beijing.

19. The whole municipality of Beijing has a population of 21,893,095 and a population density of 1,300/km2 (3,500/sq mi).

20. In 2021, Beijing had a GDP (gross domestic product) of $634.38 billion (nominal) and a GDP per capita of $28,975 (nominal).

21. Beijing is a global city and it is the second-largest Chinese city by urban population after Shanghai.

22. Beijing is so developed in terms of an economy that it houses the world’s four biggest financial institutions by total assets.

23. Beijing is where the headquarters of most of China’s largest state-owned companies are located.

24. Beijing is also nicknamed the “billionaire capital of the world” because it has the highest number of billionaires in the world living in the city.

25. The subway network of Beijing is the busiest and longest network in the world.

26. There is another international airport in the city known as Beijing Daxing International Airport which is the largest single-structure airport terminal in the world.

27. During the second millennium CE, Beijing was the largest city in the world by population.

28. Beijing is one of the most important tourist destinations in the world and is known for its gardens, tombs, walls, gates, opulent Palaces, and temples.

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29. Despite the traditional cum modern atmosphere this city has, more than 91 internationally recognized Universities are found in the city.

30. Shu Qingchun who was known for writing eight million Chinese characters in their entire life is from Beijing.

31. Beijing has hosted the ISU Grand Prix of the Figure Skating Cup of China 6 times.

32. The Zhongguancun area in Beijing is a world-leading center of, entrepreneurial, scientific, and technological innovation.

33. According to the Nature Index in 2016, Beijing is ranked the No.1 city in the world with the largest scientific research output.

34. Beijing was the second highest-earning tourist city in the world after Shanghai in the year 2018.

35. There is a place known as Beijing CBD which serves as a center for Beijing’s economic expansion, including new skyscrapers.

36. The two best C9 League universities in Asia-Pacific, Tsinghua, and Peking, are located in Beijing.

37. The IAAF World Championships in Athletics that was held in 2015 was hosted by Beijing.

38. There are about 175 foreign embassies in Beijing and also headquarters of high-ranking organizations such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

39. Nearly 96% of Beijing’s population are ethnic Han Chinese according to the 2010 census.

40. According to finance experts, Beijing’s nominal GDP is projected to reach US$1.1 trillion in the year 2035.

41. According to Globalization and World Cities Research Network, Beijing is classified as a global first-tier city.

42. The 5th wealthiest city in the world is Beijing with a total wealth that amounts to 2 trillion US dollars.

43. According to the 2021 Global Financial Centres Index, Beijing came sixth among the world’s most competitive financial centers.

44. The famous Chinese rock singer who introduces western Rock to China in 1986, Cui Jian, is from China.

45. Beijing has the highest share of articles published in the fields of physical sciences, chemistry, and earth & environmental sciences.

46. According to Nature Index, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, which is located in Beijing, is the No.1 research institute in the world.

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47. Beijing values education a lot and its compulsory education system is among the best in the world.

48. Beijing served as the location of the famous Asian Games that were held in 1990.

49. The Universiade that was held in 2001 was hosted by Beijing.

50. Beijing’s LeSports Center was one of the main venues that were used for the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup.

51. According to Global Urban Competitiveness Report in 2021, Beijing comes first in terms of “Global City Competitiveness”.

52. Beijing is one of the best cities to create a startup and was ranked 3rd in the strongest global startup ecosystem by Global Startup Ecosystem Index.

53. Yuan Longping who was one of the most famous agronomists in China is from Beijing.

54. Ms. Yang was known for her fiction, plays, essay, and nonfiction from Beijing and she was the first person to translate “Don Quixote” into Chinese.

55. Each service sector of Beijing contributes at least 6% to the city’s economy in 2013.

56. The place that is known as the Silicon Valley of China is Zhongguancun which is located northwest of Beijing.

57. The gender balance in Beijing in 2013 was 51.6 percent males and 48.4 percent females.

58. There are what are called local hukou permits in Beijing and anyone that has it is entitled to permanent residence in the city.

59. Nearly eighty percent of the population of Beijing is working for the age population.

60. There is a part of Beijing that is known to sell illegal goods. Urban Beijing is known for being a center of infringed goods.

61. About 22.2% of people in Beijing have some high school education and 31% of them have reached middle school.

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