We love visiting the fountains at The Village at Sanlitun, Solana and Lido during the steamy Beijing summers as much as the next family, but surely there are other equally fun (and drier) ways to cope with the heat?
On a recent trip to Mothercare, I came across the Birdie Breezer (¥199), a cooling fan that is a necessary addition for any stroller. Not only will it give your baby a nice, constant breeze during your walks outside, but it also has foam blades so you never have to worry about wandering fingers.
For older kids, just do what my son and I do: eat ice pops! These treats are an easy, healthy way to cool down, and making them is always fun. Pick up some plastic moulds from April Gourmet (¥6.90 for a set of four, ¥15.50 for six), then fill them with your choice of blended fruit before freezing. Our family particularly loves using watermelons (just remember to de-seed them first).
Teenagers, meanwhile, can indulge in a treat of the caffeinated variety: Coke and root beer floats. I fondly recall summer days as a teen sipping the frothy and creamy concoctions. Just place one or two scoops of ice cream (vanilla is best) in a glass and pour in the soda. Remember to have them in moderation though, lest you develop a few cavities along the way. I’m surprised I didn’t.
Of course one of the best ways to stay cool during the summer is to stay out of the sun entirely. This is especially important for children who have more sensitive eyes and delicate skin. Try to avoid direct sunlight between the peak hours of 10am and 3pm. If you do decide to go outside, make sure to cover up with light clothing, sunglasses and a hat. One of our favorite purchases so far this summer has been a straw panama hat from Okaidi for our son. It cost us a pretty penny, but it gets the job done. Of course, cheaper versions are available at Ya Show.
My final recommendation for staying cool: BabyGro's new line of UV summer clothing for babies and toddlers. Check it out at www.babygro.com.cn. While you're there, pick up a bottle of Alfreseco Anti-Bug Bite Moisturizer (¥100). It uses botanical extracts like geranium, Melissa and lavender to repel pests instead of DEET.
Enjoy the summertime and stay safe everyone.
How do you like to stay cool in Beijing? Let us know in the comments below!