Hutong Hideouts: Your Guide to Post-tour Nightlife in the Old City

For many dedicated revelers, the Old Beijing Dinner Tour is just the start of a fun-packed night of exploring Beijing. Our guides receive regular requests for post-tour nightlife recommendations, so we’ve put together a list of our top Beijing hidden hutong bars. While most guidebooks will point you toward Beijing’s Sanlitun and Workers’ Stadium districts to easily find bars and clubs, we can’t help but recommend our guests continue the Old Beijing theme by hitting the hidden hutong hideaways serving drinks until the early hours – without the unz-unz beats of a busy nightclub.

Most of these bars are very well hidden but all known to your Old Beijing Dinner Tour guide who can point you in the right direction. While most local taxi drivers are staunch in their reluctance to drive through narrow hutong alleyways, your guide can help you arrange a cab to the intersection closest to your destination and provide additional directions from there.

What to know

Before we launch into our list, let us first provide a few tips for hutong navigation:

  1. Old Beijing is arranged on a grid. Almost all streets are either due east-west or due north-south
  2. Most street signs on larger streets will display the cardinal directions
  3. On east-west streets and alleyways, odd street numbers will be on the north side of the street and even street numbers will be on the southern side of the street. On north-south hutongs, odd street numbers will be on the western side of the street and even street numbers will be on the eastern side of the street.

Now that you can find north, you’re ready to explore.

Capital Spirits & The Distillery

What you’ll find there:
Clever and crafty cocktails incorporating imported as well as local spirits. This bar was formed by the merger of a baijiu (China’s national spirit) bar and a gin distillery.

How to find it:
Walk north from Zhangzizhong Lu Subway Station Exit B (张自忠路地铁站B口) and take your second right into Dong Si Shi Er Tiao (东四十二条). Take your first left into Xinsi Hutong (幸寺胡同) and look for number 16. The gate to the courtyard will be locked and no amount of knocking will open it. Call +86 138 1108 9547 for entry.

Fang Bar

What you’ll find there:
Thoughtful and innovative cocktails incorporating Chinese and international flavors, a great soundtrack and friendly staff.

How to find it:
Take a taxi to Jiaodaokou Intersection (交道口路口), walk south and take your first right into Shou Bi Hutong (寿比胡同). The brightly lit door on your right is a small import supermarket. Enter the small, dimly lit wooden door immediately after the supermarket, with which Fang Bar shares a wall).
Address: 1 Shoubi Hutong near 15 South Jiaodoukou Da Jie, Dongcheng District, 东城区交道口南大街15号新华文化大厦(寿比胡同1号)

Hours: Sun-Thu 7pm-2am, Fri-Sat 6pm-3am. Tel: 158 1038 2089

Chez Gerard

What you’ll find there:
A small hutong import supermarket with attached bar; a great selection of imported beers at retail (rather than bar) prices; a mix of local and foreign hutong-dwellers, particularly those in the beer or bar industries.

How to get there:

Take a taxi to the southern entrance of Bei Luo Gu Xiang (北锣鼓巷南口), an alley running north off Gu Lou Dong Da Jie (鼓楼东大街). Walk north to number 45, keeping an eye out for an eye out for a courtyard entrance with a pair of red gates.

Address: 45 Beiluoguxiang, Gulou Dong Da Jie, Dongcheng District, 东城区鼓楼东大街北锣鼓巷45号
Hours: 10am-1am, 7 days.

El Nido

What you’ll find there:
A cozy courtyard with hard-to-find imported and local beers on tap, and plenty of outdoor space.

How to find it:
Take a taxi to the southern entrance of Bei Luo Gu Xiang (北锣鼓巷南口), an alley running north off Gu Lou Dong Da Jie (鼓楼东大街). Walk north 400 meters and turn left into Lang Jia Hutong (郎家胡同). El Nido is inside the first courtyard on your right.

Address: 1 Langjia Hutong, off Beiluoguxiang, off Gulou Dong Da Jie, Dongcheng District, 东城区鼓楼东大街北锣鼓巷郎家胡同1号
Hours: 6pm ‘til late.

Yue Space

What you’ll find there:
Live music of various genres from local and international performers, bottled beers and basic mixed drinks. If your Old Beijing Dinner Tour stops to try a flight of local rice wine, ask your guide to pop their head into Yue Space and tell you who’s performing after your tour.

How to find it:

Walk south from Beixinqiao Subway Station Exit C (北新桥地铁站C口) and take your second left into Ban Qiao Nan Xiang (板桥南巷). Keep an eye out on your left for the entrance to a car park, walk to the end of the carpark and look out for the Yue Space sign.

Address: 7 Ban Qiao Nan Xiang, off Dong Si Bei Da Jie, Dongcheng District (东城区东四北大街板桥南巷7号)
Hours: 10am ‘til late, 7 days

Dada & Temple

What to expect:
Dada (downstairs) plays some of the city’s best electronic music. If an internationally recognized DJ visits Beijing, they’re likely to play at a bigger commercial venue for cash and at Dada fun. Temple (upstairs) is grunge, grime, and a great place to hear the next big thing in Beijing’s rock and alternative music scenes. Confirm you’ve had your hepatitis shots and dive right in.

How to find it:

Take a taxi to 206 Gulou Dong Da Jie (鼓楼东大街206号). While in the taxi keep an eye out for the large traditional Chinese gate and the red DADA sign to help your driver locate number 206. Enter the gate and walk to the very back of the compound.

Address: 206 Gulou Dong Da Jie (鼓楼东大街206号)
Hours: 6pm ‘til late, 7 days (but you probably don’t want to get there until after 9 or 10)

School Bar

What to expect:
Another great place to see live rock, metal and punk, School Bar also has a rooftop, once common but now rare for hutong bars. The downstairs performance space is small so be prepared to stand like a sardine and/or mosh like it’s 1999.

How to find it:

Walk south along Yong He Gong Da Jie (雍和宫大街) from Yonghegong Lama Temple Subway Station Exit F (雍和宫地铁站F口) and take your first right into Wu Dao Ying Hutong (五道营胡同) and keep an eye out for a very small doorway and the School Bar sign at number 53.

Address: 53 Wudaoying Hutong, Yonghegong Dajie, Dongcheng District (东城区雍和宫大街五道营胡同53号)
Hours: 6pm til late, 7 days.

Tiki Bungalow

What to expect:
A group of expats dedicated to the revival of tiki cocktails from the 1930s to the 1970s. Expect Hawaiian shirts, cocktail umbrellas and hangovers.

How to get there:

Take a taxi to the western entrance to Jiao Dao Kou Bei San Tiao (交道口北三条西口) off Andingmen Nei Dajie. Enter Jiao Dao Kou Bei San Tiao and walk until you come to your first right hand turn. Do not take this turn. Instead, keep an eye out on your left for smooth grey wall with a small entrance. Walk through the entrance and then in between the wall and the building to find Tiki Bungalow.

Address: 东城区安定门内大街交道口北三条西口 (this address is for the western entrance to Jiaodaokou Bei San Tiao. There is no street number for this bar).

Hours: 6pm-late.

We’ve mapped out these top hidden bars in Beijing’s hutongs for your convenience below.

*Tip: If you have a Google account, hit the ‘star’ in the map embed title above to save this map to your account! Remember, if you’re in China either download the Beijing area map to your account for offline use, or purchase and set-up a VPN before your trip – products like Google, Youtube, Gmail, Facebook, Twitter & more are blocked. More info. *

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