Let Your Imagination Run Wild
Pack in a wild week of fun and exploration in the mountains, woods and lakes surrounding Beijing. Imagival is an adventure festival offering all the best outdoor activities, making it ideal for anyone who can’t make up their mind. Days will be as varied as mornings spent paddle boarding or hunting for treasure, and afternoons featuring dragon slaying or bubble football. Imagine will whisk the children off to different locations daily to give them a true view of the spectacular sights and fun that Beijing’s undiscovered nature has to offer. After days spent clambering over a woodland obstacle course, kayaking through pristine waters and practicing parkour skills, the week will culminate in a riverside survival camp where kids will roast marshmallows over a fire and camp out with their new friends.
Date: June 26-30
Age Range: For kids ages 8-13
Price: ¥4,500 (use the code P&K17 for a ¥150 discount)
Parkour is the cooler-than-cool freestyle sport of taking to the streets to scale rooftops, leap nimbly over impossibly high drops and backflip casually onto gut-wrenchingly thin fences. If this strikes fear into your heart, be reassured that Imagine’s parkour summer camp will take place near ground level and with an excess of foam providing protection from the danger of wayward stunts. Your kids will build balance, strength and coordination while learning impressive street skills on slacklines, trampolines and bouldering walls. As well as great exercise, one day those cool skills could even save lives; bodily awareness and learning how to fall are essential elements of parkour.
Dates: July 21 to August 5
Age range: For kids ages 7-16
If it’s good enough for Richard Branson, it can’t be that bad of a summer holiday option. For true bragging rights, forget the Caribbean and send your kids to the exotic climes of Mars this summer. While contact with aliens is not guaranteed, and reaching space may be unlikely, the Daystar Space Camp will utilize the expertise of real NASA engineers to help your kids plan a Mars mission. Showing children that STEM is fun, this camp will challenge and inspire students through rocket building, coding and robot-making, putting them well on the road to being the first Beijingren on the red planet.
Dates: From July 10–14
Age range: For kids ages 7–12
Game of Thrones
Travel back to the time of knights, castles, coats of arms and ruthless clan competition. Kids get to combine creation with education and some good clean fun building violent weapons of war with Atelier and FabLab’s weeklong workshop. Relive the Middle Ages by building a real model of a fortified castle complete with a drawbridge and clan crest to defend before declaring your right to rule by designing a trebuchet, the most destructive of siege engines, and laying waste to your enemy’s efforts. As well as getting a seriously creative history lesson, kids will become familiar with some practical physics as they adjust the parameters of their projectiles.
Dates: July 3–7
Age range: For kids ages 9+
In Beijing, it can be all too easy to let the weeks pass by in a Western bubble of expat activities. Make up for it with a crash course at the China Culture Center this summer. With three weeks of different activities to choose from, there are a wealth of in-depth cultural activities that will immerse your little one in ancient Chinese culture. Days include exciting visits, like a dragon boat tour of the Summer Palace or a trip to see an opera artist painting on their makeup, as well as hands-on crafts and classes ranging from cooking to building toys or learning the ancient art of Chinese tie-dye.
Dates: June 19 to August 25
Age Range: For kids ages 5–12
Price: ¥3,400 /week
Swap the streets of Beijing for the summer sunshine and golden sands of Beidaihe Azure Coast. Beijing Sailing Center will be running weekly residential camps all summer, giving kids the chance to channel their inner pirate as they learn how to conquer the seven seas. The camp offers training at all levels, from landlubbers with no sailing experience right up to salty sea dogs who simply need further opportunity to work on their skills. Specialist camps for those who’ve passed the IYT Silver level include a Racing Camp designed for teenage speed freaks to perfect their form, a Keelboat Camp where teamwork is key to maneuvering a 22-foot sailboat, and an Assistant Instructor Camp for teens who want to take their passion to the next level.
Dates: June 11 to August 25
Age Range: For kids ages 4-18
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