How to Experience Hutong Life

How to Experience Hutong LifeAlmost all visitors who have lived in Hutong of Beijing will take a fancy to Chinese quadrangle courtyard and old Beijing culture. For them, to go deep into Hutong, the past memories and traces of Old Beijing, is the only way to experience the authentic Beijing flavor. Nanluoguxiang, or South Luogu Lane, a Hutong built 700 years ago in Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), has become a popular haunt for both domestic and foreign travelers today with many distinctive bars, stores and galleries. Inside Nanluoguxiang as well as its surroundings, there are many hotels and inns featured with strong old Beijing flavor. And here are a few for your reference during your Hutong tour.

Former Beijing Inn: A hotel just transformed from a typical Beijing dwelling, Former Beijing Inn is the right place to get back to the old Beijing times- the delicate courtyards, carved beams and painted rafters, neat rooms of primitive simplify, carved wooden beds of antique beauty inside, and outside crisscross Hutong, old Peking snacks, vendor’s cries, bustling residents… Former Beijing Inn not only stands among the age-old architectural complex but also connects the prosperous modern blocks of the city. It is adjacent to hot tourists’ attractions, like Tiananmen Square, Place Museum, Houhai Bar Street, Prince Gong Mansion, and so forth. During your Hutong tour, Duge Hotel presents itself with a unique blend of Chinese and western styles: It kept the courtyard’s original layout, with the black gate and red walls, wood-carven lattices, and the vigorous bamboo grove… Boldly using colors in the western way, rooms are decorated with diversified Chinese articles, the hostess’s paintings and calligraphies, collected photography works, ethnic headwear, porcelain paintings, facial makeup in Peking Opera, Old Shanghai posters, and so on.

N.E.Hotel Beijing–traditional Chinese paintings are the themes: An antique quadrangle courtyard with red walls and gray tiles in Yueya Hutong, N.E.Hotel Beijing is no less than a cultural hall. It is full of wooden carvings patterned with Chinese dragons and phoenixes, as well as decorations of Chinese paintings and calligraphies. Hutong Impressions Beijing Guesthouse–the memories of ordinary Hutong inhabitants: An old bike (a fashionable vehicle in 1960s and 1970s in China) pauses at the gate, with bamboo birdcages hang under the eave and copper bells tied on the door handle. On the clean walls are decorated paintings of bamboo, birds, and the paper-cut lamps. When opening the window, the authentic Hutong life scene just leaps to your eyes.

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Reasons to Visit Beijing Hutong

Reasons to Visit Beijing HutongFor your reference, here are some reasons why visiting Beijing Hutong is a must-do in Beijing. Hiring a traditional rickshaw, the visit to Hutong will give you the best insight into Beijing Culture and old history. Are you ready to be blown away by a world of magic!

Take a walk down Chengxian Street. It has a history of 700 years ago and enjoys a high prestige in Beijing. Its structures were erected fully in line with ancient Chinese customs: Confucius Temple and Imperial College, “Rongbu Tang” crafts store, well-known in making toys with downy materials (wool, cotton). Chengxian Street is definitely a great cultural heritage of the Hutong. Ascend the Drum Tower and indulge yourself with the overall view of Hutong and surrounding Courtyards. Wander along the Skewed Tobacco Pouch Street, constructed about 800 years ago. Taste the authentic flavors of old Beijing city and picture the scenes in which the old locals were selling long-stemmed pipes and tobacco. Explore Prince Gong’s Mansion in depth. The mansion was built in 1777. Offered to Prince Gong by Emperor Xianfeng (1851-1862) in 1851, the mansion took its name and is now known as the most well preserved prince mansion in Beijing. Immerse in the typical Hutong relaxed lifestyle in Shichahai area: the most famous Hutongs are there waiting for your discovery.

Get on board for a short tour on Shichahai Lake which used to be the center of old Beijing city. As the only water system survived, the lake traces back to Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). Shichaihai area is home to many former dwellings of the celebrities. Chat with locals living in Hutong, especially Mr. Dacheng Bai, a local folk craftsman famous for making figurines of drama characters. With clothes made of silk, and other many little crafts, the man’s work are pure intangible cultural heritage of Beijing Hutong. Lodge in a local courtyard located in Hutong. See the courtyard, enjoy local food and immerse in the typical relaxed lifestyle of the locals. Visit the former residence of the best known Beijing Opera master ever: Mr. Mei Lanfang (1894-1961). He is one of the greatest artists in the world and the founder of one of the three greatest acting methods created by Shakespeare, Stanislavsky and Meilanfang. Explore in depth his colorful and peaceful courtyard and get a glimpse of the place where he used to live. Visit the former residence of Song Ching Ling (1890-1981) who used to be Honorary Chairman of the PRC, and whose garden is a pure delight for the eyes.

Apart from Palace Museum, Beijing has another treasure house to offer—Beijing Hutong.

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Marvelous Beijing 3 Days Coach Tour

3 Day Beijing Tour Package – Bus Tour B (without hotel)

Price From: US$ 80 (512 CNY)

Day 1: Beijing (L)
Badaling Great Wall1. Pick you up from your hotel, and then drive to the Ming Tomb to visit Changling in 1 hour. Before having lunch, you will have 45 minutes for a short visit of Jade Carving Factory.
- Ming Tombs: Buried 13 emperors of Ming Dynasty, it is the largest clusters of imperial cemeteries in China.
- Changling: The tomb of Emperor Chengzu and his empress, is the largest and most magnificent one of Ming Tombs.
2. Having traditional Chinese lunch at Jindian restaurant. After lunch, drive to the Badaling Great Wall. The hike on Badaling Great Wall takes 2 hours. Cable car is available and optional.
- Badaling Great Wall: The most famous and best-preserved section of the Great Wall.
3. On the way to your hotels, we will drive by “Bird’s Nest”, ”Water Cube”, you will have a chance to take pictures in coach. After that, you will have a chance to enjoy the Chinese traditional Silk arts. After the tour, transfer back to your hotel.

Day 2: Beijing (L)
Forbidden City1. Pick up travelers from hotel, and then drive to the Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City (including the Exhibition of Treasures).
- Tiananmen Square: The largest public square in the world with a total area of 440,000 square meters.
- Forbidden City: The best preserved imperial palace in China and the largest ancient palatial structure in the world.
2. Drive to the Temple of Heaven. On the way, you will have a chance to visit the Chinese traditional medicine culture.
- Temple of Heaven: The largest existing complex of ancient sacrificial buildings in China.
3. After Chinese lunch (40minutes) in Restaurant. Enjoy a short visit to a pearl free market.
4. Drive to Summer Palace, visit it for about 1.5 hours. At last, drive the travelers back to guest hotel.
- Summer Palace: The largest and most well-preserved royal park in China, greatly influences Chinese horticulture.

Day 3: Beijing (L)
Hutong1. Pick up at your hotel, and then drive to Beijing Zoo to see the lovely Giant Pandas.
- Beijing Zoo: China’s and World’s largest treasure house of animals and birds, also there are pandas.
2. Then take you to the Lama Temple, 1 hour tour for the mysterious Tibet style Buddhism temple. Before having lunch, you will have 45 minutes to visit the Chinese traditional handicraft silk carpet factory.
- Lama Temple: The largest and most perfectly preserved lamasery of Gelug Sect in present day Beijing.
3. Then you will be arranged to visit the old Beijing lanes by taking rickshaws. Hutong tour lasts for 2 hours to explore the real life of ordinary people in Beijing.
4. On the way to your hotels, we also arrange the short visit to a China Tea House to enjoy tea ceremony. Transfer back to your hotels.

Detail Itinerary

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Typical Beijing Hutongs

Yandaixiejie Hutong is one of the typical architectures in Beijing, with long history of more than 700 years. Inheriting to now, hutong has become one of the spots of Beijing, some still are the residential areas, but some has become the business areas.

Nanluoguxiang is a famous hutong for visitors in Beijing. In fact, Nanluoguxiang is the wealth area with many residences of famous and rich people from Ming and Qing dynasties. From general in Ming Dynasty to prince in Qing Dynasty, from Beiyang Government to the Kuomintang and from master in literature to great master in art, every hutong leaves the historical trace in Nanluoguxiang Hutong. In recent years, it becomes the hot point in various fashion magazines. And many teleplay choose here as scenes. The Nanluoguxiang is also a famous wine bar street with various characteristic bars, different with other bar streets, it is quiet, harmony and nature.

Located at Dianmen Outer Street, Yandaixiejie is famous for managing the long-stemmed Chinese pipe, hookah, antiques and paintings in the end of Qing Dynasty, the architectural style of stores has strong characters of local Beijing, simple and traditional, and is also the noted cultural street, left many traces of celebrities. As the Beijing old hutong, Yandai Xiejie takes its advantage in location and was made to be a popular street for tourists. Walking along this hutong, it is easily find various interesting boutiques with beautiful and unique decoration, such as traditional Chinese clothing, jewellery, silk items, tea, etc. It gathers the characteristics of Chinese traditional culture, not very long, but close to Houhai Lake.

In QIanmen Street, there is famous hutong named Dashilan, with long history of 500 years. From 18TH year of Yongle in Ming dynasty, it changes greatly and develops to be a business street gradually. Now, there are 36 shops in 11 trades, the average of passenger flow volume are 150 thousand tourists and more than 200 thousand tourists in festival and holiday. All these old constructions and what happened in it are important human treasures and cultural resources of Capital Beijing. Dashilan hutong covers an area of 1.26 square kilometers with various ancient constructions with original flavor. From ancient time to present, the Dashilan Hutong is a flourishing business area.

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Majestic Beijing 4 Days Package Tour

4 Days Beijing Tour Package B (with hotel)

Price From: US$ 279( 1,780 CNY )

Day 1: Arrival at Beijing
Our tour guide will meet you at Beijing Airport on your arrival. Then pay an exterior visit to the Bird’s Nest and Water Cube. After the visit of Bird’s Nest, transfer to your hotel. Free at leisure for the rest of the day.

HutongDay 2: Beijing (B, L, D)
Full day trip to the Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City (including the Exhibition of Treasures) and then visit 300-year old courtyard,  Hutong in Rickshaw, Drop off the peidicab at the Silver Ingot Bridge( Yinding Bridge ) and walk along the 800-year old Yandai Xiejie ( Tobacco Pipe Lean Street ), and get to the Drum Tower. Enjoy the Roasted Duck in the famous Quanjude Restaurant in the evening. On the way to the Hutong, you will have a chance to enjoy tea ceremony.
- Tiananmen Square: The largest public square in the world with a total area of 440,000 square meters.
- Forbidden City: The best preserved imperial palace in China and the largest ancient palatial structure in the world.
- Hutong: Small streets in Beijing, was the memory of the traditional life and culture in Beijing.

Badaling Great WallDay 3: Beijing (B, L)
Full day trip to the Badaling Great Wall, Summer Palace. On the way to Badaling Great Wall, we will visit a large scale jade processing factory. There is workshop for demonstration of Jade carving, the visit will help you to know the processes of Chinese jade carving and Chinese jade culture. You may also take photo in the huge Jade exhibition hall or buy some jade carving souvenir as you like.
In the evening (7:15~8:30PM), enjoy the Peking Opera Show (or Chinese Acrobatic show, or Chinese Kongfu show, choose one show from these three options, depending on your interest).
- Badaling Great Wall: The most famous and best-preserved section of the Great Wall.
- Summer Palace: The largest and most well-preserved royal park in China, greatly influences Chinese horticulture.

Day 4: Beijing (B, L)
Pick you up from your hotel and visit the Temple of Heaven. You will have a chance to visit the Chinese traditional medicine culture. Transfer from hotel to airport, see off.
- Temple of Heaven: The largest existing complex of ancient sacrificial buildings in China.

Detail Itinerary

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Golden Triangle in Beijing Downtown

Located in center of Beijing, Hutong is the traditional residential form in Beijing. If you want to know about the real life style of Beijingers, Hutong is thee must-see. As well as Hutong, Forbidden City, Summer Palace and Temple of Heaven are the must-see spots in Beijing downtown.

Forbidden CitySituated at heart of Beijing, Forbidden City is one of the world famous attractions in Beijing, also known as the Imperial Palace, is home to 24 emperors in Ming and Qing Dynasties since the third emperor of Ming Dynasty moved capital from Nanjing to Beijing. Forbidden City is the largest palatial structure in the world and the best preserved imperial palace in China. Covering an area of 720,000 square meters, Forbidden City owns almost 10,000 rooms, is divided into two main parts including the Inner Court and Outer Court. Now, some halls of Forbidden City were rebuilt to be the museum for collecting the treasures of royal China and the private collections of emperors, so it is also called as Palace Museum.

Temple of HeavenTemple of Heaven is the largest existing complex of ancient sacrificial buildings in China. Covering an area of 273 hectares, it is four times larger than Forbidden City, is divided into inner and outer altars by two walls. The main architectures Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest, the Imperial Vault of Heaven and Circular Mound Altar are in the south-north axle. The wall, separates the Temple of Heaven, is square in south and circle in north, symbolizes the square land and circle heaven. The main architectures in Circular Mound Altar include the Circular Mound Altar and Imperial Vault of Heaven. They symbolize the four seasons, twelve months, twelve hours and constellation. Temple of Heaven is a holy place for ancient people.

Summer PalaceSummer Palace is the existed largest imperial garden, greatly influenced the Chinese horticulture. Covering an area of 290 hectares, Summer Palace is centered at Foxiangge Pavilion on Longevity Hill, including the Kunming Lake, Longevity and Suzhou Street mainly. Summer Palace collects the traditional landscape architecture art great achievements and borrows the surrounding environment. It not only contains the gorgeous imperial garden momentum, but also is full of natural interests. There are more than 20 small and large yards, more than hundred architectures and more than 3000 ancient rooms, more than 1600 famous and ancient trees in Summer Palace.

Related Routes:

Temple of Heaven & Summer Palace from US$ 44/pax

Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City & Summer Palace from US$ 54/pax

Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven & Summer Palace Day Tour for US$ 30/pax

Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven & Summer Palace Day Tour from US$ 52/pax

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Hutong – Witnesses Beijing

Shijia HutongHutong, the most ancient typical symbol of residential in Beijing, crowded with Chinese quadrangles, is the best place to know about the Chinese history and culture through talking with the owners of Chinese quadrangles or visiting lanes by rickshaw, the driver will introduce you the lane you are visiting. During so many years, some old hutongs have been rebuilt to be streets with various stores, such as the Yandaixiejie, Nanluoguxiang, etc. But still some original hutongs stand in center of Beijing, tell their stories to visitors.

Shijia Hutong is a simple but old one. Shijia Hutong is located in the southeast of Dongcheng District and near Shijia House Beijing. From east to west is Nianxiao Street of Chaoyangmen and Dongsi South Street. It is close to East and West Luoquan Hutong, and next to Neiwubu Street. It is recorded that the name of Shijia Hutong is base on the local big family Shi.There are strong cultural art smells in Shijia Hutong. The smell is not only from Shijia Primary School, the old artists add the strength of culture to the ordinary Hutong living in the dormitories of the People Art Theater. Many famous artists lived in this hutong such as Jin Yaqin and her husband Niu Xingli. The Shijia Hutong is an old and famous hutong with beautiful environment and elegant smell. The dormitories of Beijing People Art Theater are located in the 56 of Shijia Hutong.

Just visiting it is not enough to understand it, living in hotels in hutong with typical Chinese quadrangles style is an ideal way. Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel, a three-star Chinese hotel, is located in south of Andingmen of Dongcheng District in Beijing. Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel is close to Lama Temple, Houhai Park, Yan Dai Xie Jie, Drum Tower and some famous places. Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel connects with scenic spot of Nan Luo Gu Xiang closely. It is 8km from Tiananmen Square, 10km from Beijing Railway Station, and 25km from Beijing Capital International Airport. The design feelings of Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel come from these elements of hutong. “Hutong Inn in Hutong, In Hutong Hutong Inn” describes the situation of Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel. Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel is a convenient cultural hotel, also it is a Hutong Museum. Beijing Hutong Culture Inn & Hostel records over 60 stories about old Beijing.

Would you like to visit the ancient Beijing, hutong is the best place.

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1 Day Tour: Forbidden City, Hutong

Hutong is the most traditional living form in Beijing, this one day tour leads you to enjoy the Forbidden City and hutong to know the local life of Beijing.

Hutong

Price From: US$ 60( 380 CNY )

Departure: You decide!
Tour Duration: about 8 hours include lunch
Pick-up place and time: Your City Center Hotel between 7:00am and 8:30am
Finishing place and time: Your City Center Hotel around 6:00pm
Payment Method: Cash, Credit Cards, Wire, Western Union
Tour Guide Language: English, other language speaking guide (French, Japanese, Spanish etc.) is available, if need, please contact us!
Feature: Enjoy one day Private tour to the famous Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and Hutong will let you have deep impression on the old Beijing.

Review of tourists had visited the hutong and Forbidden City tour:
A very great Beijing private tour I have experienced today! The tour to Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and Hutong left us a deep impression on the old Beijing. Only 60 USD per person with the pick-up and drop-off service, the typical Chinese lunch and the well English speaking tour guide, it is really worth! And I would like to say thank you to our knowledgeable tour guide for her patient explanation for the background of each attraction.

Detail Itinerary

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Hutong in Beijing

Yandaixiejie

Hutong, the local living form in Beijing, came into existence in the Yuan Dynasty. Hutong is the most representative of old Beijing. For hundred years, they witness the passage of time. Now, Beijing hutong also becomes the one of the must-see place for tourists to visit Beijing. If you want to know more about the ordinary culture and history, hutongs in Beijing is ideal choice. Just take the rickshaw, the driver would introduce you the history of what you passed. The most important they would tell you some stories that rare people know. In Beijing, the most famous hutongs are Yandaixiejie, Nanluoguxiang, Dashilan and Liulichang. Almost every foreign tourist would visit these characteristics hutongs in Beijing to enjoy the typical Chinese style souvenirs, snacks and culture. Yandaixiejie, close to Houhai, famous for its shape seems like tobacco pipe. Here, you can see various interesting and delicate souvenirs with typical Chinese style. Nanluoguxiang is famous for its delicious snacks, and you always see many people line up for a cheese or kitchen wing. Liulichang is featured with many cultural shops sell paintings and calligraphy. Usually, you can also visit in center of Beijing to enjoy the hutongs for living, and talk to local people you will know more about the history of old Beijing.

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Shichahai

ShichahaiHere some attractions that you can visit in your holiday. One of them is Hutong Beijing which offers Beijing’s local people architecture and lifestyle to the tourists. Hutong Beijing is like a traditional courtyard residence with old Chinese furniture, decoration and layout. The tourists can experience that on our Hutong Beijing Tour. There, located not far from Hutong Beijing also has lot of interesting places that you can visit after your tour. One of the most interesting is Shichahai.

The name Shichahai comes from the original ten temples around. With a 336,000-square-meter water-covered area connected with Zhongnanhai, Shichahai is the only open scenic area with a wide expanse of water in the city. Shichahai which situated not far from Hutong Beijing is an historic scenic area consisting of three lakes in the north of central Beijing in China including the Qianhai, West Sea and Houhai. Houhai is one of the famous bar street that located surround the lake not far from Hutong Beijing. Along the lake surrounded lots of bar, shop and restaurants that attracts lots of foreigners at weekend.

Shichahai with beautiful natural landscape is also known as the “Lake of the North”, which is the ancient capital of the source, the source of culture, popular leisure, historical experience and enjoy the stylish resort. The folk customs resources are very rich in this area. The street layout of Shichahai may date back to the Yuan Dynasty. Many buildings in the area have a long history and maintain the typical characteristics of traditional Beijing buildings.

Around Shichahai, there also has the part of hutong Beijing that become popular in Beijing. The most famous hutongs near Shichahai will be the Yandaixiejie and the Nanluoguxiang. Nanluoguxiang is a little street over 1 kilometer long is offers with cafes, bars, restaurants, and shops selling traditional crafts and souvenirs. Because Shichahai Lake is located close to Hutong Beijing, so there has lots of interesting places that offer Beijing local people life and culture. The tourists can experience that all in Hutong Beijing. Shichahai Lake is also offers various recreation for example the guests can take the boat in the summer or ice skating in the winter. If you want visit Shichahai Lake and Hutong Beijing, here I recommend the tour that might suitable for you. You can see the details directly on our website. Hope you enjoy the holiday and welcome to Beijing.

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