Updated: Jan 28, 2020
Planning a trip to China soon? You can’t go without visiting the bustling metropolis of Beijing. China’s capital both now and in imperialist times, the city is bursting with culture and history.
This guide will tell you the hot-spots to eat, drink, stay and play in one of the world’s oldest cities.
Quanjude Roast Duck Restaurant located in the Shuaifuyuan Hutong - $$$
You will be visiting Peking – the ancient name for Beijing – therefore you must indulge in some authentic Peking Duck. A great place to try for new visitors to China is Quanjude Roast Duck restaurant. There are multiple branches around Beijing and the staff have English speaking skills. Try a whole Peking Duck complete with pancakes and plum sauce for a culinary experience. The chefs will even slice the duck up in front of you! It is quite the performance.
Mr Shi’s Dumplings located in the Baochao Hutong - $$
Some of the tastiest, most authentic Chinese food can be found in the Hutongs of Beijing. The Hutongs are ancient neighbourhoods which still hold their imperialist charm to this day. Try some fresh dumplings at Mr Shi’s Dumplings restaurant. You can try them steamed, fried or even with soup inside of them! There is a technique to dumpling eating, but don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty if you can’t perfect this. A tasty treat that you’ll be sure to remember!
Make sure you brush up on your chopstick skills! Many restaurants in Beijing only offer chopsticks as cutlery.
Beijing has a bustling bar scene and there are plenty of places for tourists to try.
Sanlitun Bar Street - $$$
Take a walk down one of Beijing’s most popular nightlife districts - Sanlitun Bar Street. Famous among expats and young locals, you will be spoilt for choice as 260 metres of bars and nightlife lay ahead of you. Try some
Mijiu (Chinese rice wine) or indulge in a favourite cocktail from back home, the choice is yours!
O’Bar Nuo Hotel Beijing - $$$$
Indulge in a glass of French champagne or a cocktail while gazing upon Beijing’s glittering skyline at O’Bar, inside the Nuo Hotel. Experience their mixture of oriental opulence coupled with modern mystique!
Nuo Hotel Beijing
Stay at the Nuo Hotel, located in downtown Beijing. Based off of Ming Dynasty treasures, this hotel boasts all the modern comforts with hints of imperial luxury. You can wake up each morning feeling refreshed and ready to explore Beijing. The best part? The hotel is conveniently located close to the airport!
Sunrise Kempinski Hotel Beijing
Are you looking for more tranquil and relaxing accommodation, but still wanting to experience the hustle and bustle that is Beijing? Look no further than the Sunrise Kempinski Hotel, located on Yanqi Lake. A perfect location for those wanting to explore the Great Wall of China as this hotel is conveniently located between the city and the Great Wall.
The Great Wall of China
No one can visit China without visiting the most famous attraction of them all, the Great Wall of China! After serving its purpose of keeping the Mongols out, it now serves as a UNESCO world heritage attraction. The wall is over 2000km long and there are many places tourists can go to visit. The closest sites to Beijing are Muitanyu and Badaling. Each location is only a short hour and a half car ride from downtown Beijing. There are many things to do at the Great Wall, you can climb it, toboggan down it, take a ski lift to the top and even a picturesque helicopter ride. There are also shops and restaurants tourists can buy souvenirs and enjoy lunch at.
The Forbidden City
Due to Beijing’s rich imperialist history, tourists can visit the Forbidden city - located in the heart of Beijing. Another very famous UNESCO site, tourists can experience life as an emperor and visit the Imperial Palace which was forbidden for commoners to visit for over 600 years!
Beijing has recently exploded with chic boutique and ultra-modern shopping centres. Stroll down Beijing’s high street – Jinbao Street – where you can find all your favourite designer brands and some incredible shopping centres or pick yourself up a bargain at Beijing’s favourite fake brands market – Silk Street market. You can buy some authentic Chinese souvenirs at one of the many stalls and shops situated around Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City.
By Georgia Ristivojevic