On the upside, we found the Chinese to be very child friendly. Basically everyone will smile and try to interact with your child. Restaurant staff has consistently been very considerate, bringing extra spoons/napkins/water, and even taking into account possible drafts from air conditioning. Parents of similarly aged or slightly older children will encourage their children to say hello to the “little sister”. On the downside, complete strangers will try to touch your child or end up otherwise creeping out the kiddo by persistent attempts to interact. Strangers will also try to snap photographs of “exotic looking” children, depending on their politeness with or without asking permission first. We cannot even count the number of pictures taken of our little one in that week! But overall, the positive interactions have far outweighed the annoying ones.
Food need not be a cause of great worry as long as some basic precautions are taken. For starters, food in Beijing is not very spicy. For our daughter, we relied largely on white rice, steamed vegetables and marinated tofu when eating out (also steamed buns would have been perfectly good, but she didn’t like them) and kept some apples, bananas and crackers from a nearby seven-eleven on hand for in between. As the tap water in not drinkable, it’s also a good idea to have bottled water within reach at all times.
You will probably have to use taxis to get around. Beijing taxis do not carry car seats for children, and even if you had your own, rarely have accessible seat belts at all. Seat belt use is simply not a thing. On the upside, you are likely to go slow due to heavy traffic.
As for practical matters, we readily found diapers (pampers, huggies and some Japanese brands), wipes, and other baby supplies at a large supermarket nearby.
The sights in Beijing are truly stunning, and our daughter has genuinely enjoyed seeing the Temple of Heaven (maybe because it’s so colorful?).
Beijing has a lot to offer. We have been somewhat on the conservative side avoiding heat/air pollution/suspicious food, and I am happy to say our daughter has enjoyed excellent health throughout our stay. She also has had some good fun running around the sights, playing with Chinese children and generally basking in all the attention she was getting.