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Best of Beijing

Must-hit spots in China’s booming city.
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Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Duration: Multiple days

Overview :  We’ve got the lowdown on the city’s can’t-miss sites, shops, restaurants, and tour guides. It’s everything you need for visiting China... more »

Tips:  Flying to Beijing, China: Beijing’s Capital Airport has 98 international air routes linking the city to 39 countries. From the States,... more »

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Points of Interest

The heritage center offers educational tours through the city’s traditional, and fast disappearing, hutong neighborhoods.

Address:
Fangjia Hutong, Andingmennei Dajie, Room 309, Bldg. E, No.46
Beijing
China

Phone:
86-10-6403-4932

2. Dadong Roast Duck Restaurant

For an authentic Peking Duck experience, locals swear by Dadong, just a 10-minute walk from Chaoyang Park Beach. After a complex process of inflating and drying their skins, the birds are roasted in fruitwood-fueled brick ovens. The result: an authentic Peking duck with supernaturally light, brittle skin and moist, greaseless flesh—served,... More

3. Dashanzi Art District

Also known as Factory 798, this Bauhaus-style complex houses the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art.

Address:
4 Jiuxianqiao Rd., 798 Yishuqu
Beijing
China

Phone:
86-10-8456-2421

It doesn’t have a street address—which is only fitting for a place that was once considered the center of the universe. The Forbidden City’s vast, gorgeous compound of buildings, courtyards, and pathways—all surrounded by fortress-like walls—was completed during the reign of the Ming dynasty in the 15th century, and for hundreds of years it was... More

5. Houhai Lake

The central Houhai Lake is lined with lively waterfront bars and cafés, take a stroll along the promenade before sitting down to dine.

Address:
Beijing
China

Treat yourself to an over-the-top dinner at the Philippe Starck-designed LAN, full of Baroque accents and crowd-pleasing dishes (oysters in spicy-sauce; stir-fried lobster).

Address:
12B Jianguomenwai Dajie, LG Twin Towers B 12, 4th floor
Beijing
China

Phone:
86-10-5109-6012

7. Legation Quarter

A high-end restaurant, entertainment, and cultural development set within the former American Embassy compound.

Address:
Beijing
China

8. National Centre for the Performing Arts

A colossal monument to theatre, opera, and classical music opened in the Fall of 2007, just in time to impress the Olympic crowds.

Address:
2 West Chang’an Ave.
Beijing
China

Phone:
86-10-6655-0000

It isn’t often that a building defines a city, and even becomes its icon, but that seems destined to be the case of Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron’s National Stadium in Beijing, the primary site of the 2008 summer Olympic games. The stadium is a stunning attraction, a woven-basket form that seems to have grown organically on the edge of town ... More

10. Olympic Green

The epicenter of the Beijing games, the green is the site of Herzog & de Meuron-designed "Bird’s Nest" National Stadium where the gymnastic and aquatic competitions are held; and Olympic Village, where more than 10,000 Olympians set up camp.

Address:
Datun Rd.
Beijing
China

Phone:
86-10-6669-9185

11. Panjiayuan Market

For really distinctive souvenirs, avoid the dreary state-run stores and samey hotel-lobby shops in favor of this boisterous, treasure-filled market. The rows of shops (augmented by a sprawling outdoor market on weekends) sell every kind of Asian antiquity a collector could want—including centuries-old carved mahogany furniture; Buddha statues;... More

12. Ruifuxiang

In-the-know shoppers head to this Tianamen square locale for bespoke qipaos (traditional full-length dresses) in rich silk or brocade.

Address:
5 Dazhalan Jie
Beijing
China

Phone:
86-10-6303-5313

13. Tiananmen Square

Capable of holding a million people, the 100-acre Tiananmen is the world’s largest public square. Built in 1949, when the Communist Party took power, the square is flanked by hulking, Stalinist-style structures such as the Great Hall of the People and, to the north, the Forbidden City, with Mao’s massive entranceway portrait. The mausoleum of the ... More