Curious about Beijing nightlife and wondering how to maximise the free time in the evenings on a Beijing tour?
Look no further than this Beijing nightlife guide created by Beijing tour guides, who know all the best spots to be.
With nights just as important as the days for maximising precious time on your visit to Beijing, having a plan for what to do at night and create even more memories is a must.
Whether you long for the majestic sight of Beijing at night with its red lanterns and lights, or you’re eager to mix with locals, Beijing is a vibrant and dynamic city at night. You just need to know where to go.
Use this traveler’s ultimate guide to enjoy the best that nightlife in Beijing has to offer.
#1 Grab a bite and beverage
Good food, good times, great memories!
Beijing nightlife culture is definitely fun. With a strong expatriate community demanding tastes from home, there are plenty of places to grab a chilled beer, enjoy a burger, and mix locals, both Chinese and from overseas.
With our local expert’s ear to the ground, we’ve found three great food and drink venues for your China holiday.
Slow Boat Brewery Taproom
Named for the song Slow Boat to China by Frank Loesser, this popular bar emulates the feel and atmosphere of a gentle, relaxing voyage. Serving a variety of meals and tasty burgers, Slow Boat has built a reputation for its seasonal small-batch brews.
Owned by two expat American, this bar a swag of awards to its name, including Best Burger, Best Hutong Bar, and Outstanding Local Craft Beer. A bar for the hip and upwardly mobile, you’ll find Slow Boat nestled in a quaint little alley with two red lanterns above the entrance. Small it may be, but you’ll love the cozy ambience and fantastic service.
Find it: No.56-2 Dongsi Batiao Alley, Dongcheng District, Beijing
Check them out: www.slowboatbrewery.com
Great Leap Brewing: a craft brewing staple of Beijing nightlife
Great Leap Brewing has pioneered the craft beer scene in Beijing nightlife since it opened in 2010.
With the owners, Carl and Liu Fang priding themselves on their crafting ability, their claim that “Exceptional craft beer” is more than just a product at Great Leap Brewing, “It’s a responsibility!”.
The bar is regularly full of expats, locals, and travelers enjoying the American-style pub eats of french fries and burgers. When you visit their bar in the traditional Beijing siheyuan, be sure to venture out to the courtyard. That way, you can make like a local and sample their goods, appreciating fine local Chinese ingredients like Qingdao Flower Hops found in their 20+ craft beers.
Find it: No.45-1, Xinyuan Street, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Check them out: www.greatleapbrewing.com
Janes and Hooch
A popular luxury bar in Beijing, Janes and Hooch combines friendly service, great music, and an on-trend rustic ambience. The upmarket style of Janes and Hooch does mean the price tag is slightly higher, but the taste and atmosphere definitely makes it worthwhile.
Food is straightforward, of exceptional quality, and a little cheeky! With menu items like 50 Shades of Oolong and The Filthy Martini, a visit here will make a Beijing nightlife adventure.
Find it: No.4 Worker’s Stadium North Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Check them out: www.janeshooch.com
Wangfujing snack street: perfect Beijing nightlife food
Want to create beautiful travel food memories?
On your Beijing tour, make a stop at Wangfujing snack street. Although we’re talking Beijing nightlife, a visit to Wangfujing snack street is good any time of day.
Wangfujing is usually associated with shopping, and there is certainly plenty to be had in Wangfujing snack street. However, the real star of this Beijing food mecca are the traditional local snacks.
Bustling with tourists and locals till the early hours, Wangfujing snack street offers an authentic Beijing culinary experience. From the incredibly popular sugar coated haws or tanghulu on a stick, to Baodu, to fried scorpion and Douzhir, otherwise known as mung bean milk.
Experience these unique Beijing tastes for an unforgettable night of food. Looking for more great tips on Beijing food? Read Top 10 Major Snack Streets in Beijing.
Find it: Wangfujing Snack Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing
Go to a Beijing club
The people of Beijing are polite, hard-working, and decent. However, like anywhere in the world, after a long day in the office, the locals gather at one of these three clubs in Beijing, to let go of the day. On your China tour and wanting a taste of real Beijing nightlife? Any one of these three unique Beijing nightclubs provide a unique insight to local nightlife.
With four simultaneous dance floors, each with their own DJ’s and music, Club Mix earns the title of Beijing’s largest dance club.
As far as Nightclubs go, drinks are pricey, but given you’re rubbing shoulders with A-listers and Chinese celebrities, you might be prepared to forgive them.
Find it: North gate of Worker’s Stadium, Chaoyang District, Beijing
MAO Livehouse, or Musician Audience Organizer, is a chain of live venues across China. Other than the Beijing Livehouse, MAO captivates audiences in Shanghai, Chongqing, Kunming, and Hangzhou.
Since MAO started tuning into what fans wanted over 10 years ago, they’ve served more than 2.5 million music lovers with over 2,500 concerts, collaborating with more than 1,000 internationally recognized artists.
Beijing live music lovers have a saying about MAO: where there’s the MAO, there’s live music! Be sure to add it to your Beijing nightlife must-see list.
Find it: No.111 Gulou East Road, Dongcheng District, Beijing
After legendary gaming bar, 8-Bit, closed its doors in early-2018, LevelUp Barcade has quickly become the new haven for gaming buffs.
Patrons go head-to-head, challenging each other to battles of skill, wit, and button-mashing fury. Contest with locals on iconic games like Super Smash, Street Fighter, and Mario Kart. With food and drinks available and plenty of good-hearted competition, LevelUp Barcade is a club like no other. So plug in and beat down!
Find it: Building 13, No.3 Caijing East Road, Haidian District
Go to a Beijing show
With a history spanning millennia, and tall tales filled with drama, emotion, and not so happy endings, China sure knows how to put on a show.
Hosting some of the world’s best theatrical performances, with soulful melodies, fantastical tales, and death-defying Kung Fu, it was hard making a list of just four Beijing shows.
The Legend of Kung Fu at Red Theater in Beijing
Witness true Chinese martial arts at its best with this inspiring Kung Fu show.
The legend of Kung Fu showcased in the Red Theatre is a high-intensity performance with a moving story to back it up. The thrilling pace and incredible detail of the stage design take audiences to another time. Showcasing professional martial artists ranging in age from ten years to much older, the spectacular Kung fu action will leave you wanting more.
Whether you’re a martial arts enthusiast, or just have a soft spot for the young boy wishing to become a master, this is truly an unforgettable Beijing nightlife experience.
Find it: No.44 Xingfu Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing
Peking Opera at Liyuan Theater
With a history spanning centuries, Peking or Beijing opera, is a distinctive style of Chinese opera.
Now performed at the Liyuan Theater, the Peking Opera originated when the famous four Anhui opera troupes came to Beijing.
A true cultural treasure, the Beijing Opera showcases the time-honored traditions and routines of this unique art form. Speak with your local Beijing guide to book.
Find it: No.175 Yongan Road, Xuanwu District, Beijing
Acrobatic Show at Chaoyang Theater
There is no language block or cultural barrier here, just the easy to understand the result of unbelievable hard-work and dedication.
Arguably the best performing arts show China, the “Kingdom of Acrobatics” in Beijing’s Chaoyang Theater is a truly spectacular performance. With its brain-bending stunts, and graceful choreography, the acrobatics performed by this troupe are packed with color and excitement.
The Chaoyang Theatre Acrobatic Show is definitely in a league of its own and is probably one of the most exhilarating nightlife activities Beijing has to offer. Purchase tickets in advance as the venue sells out fast.
Find it: No.36 North Road of East 3rd Ring, Chaoyang District, Beijing
The Golden Mask Dynasty Performance in Beijing
An original Chinese masterpiece, ‘The Golden Mask Dynasty’ has eight spellbinding chapters and includes more than 200 performers. Proudly produced by all Chinese playwrights, directors, and designers, the show creates an incredible story of China in a mythical era.
Telling a deeply imaginative portrayal of war, royal conquest, and great obstacles, the central character is a queen who wore a golden mask and created a prosperous dynasty. As with many Chinese stories, catastrophe struck and the queen of the Golden Mask Dynasty was faced with sacrificing herself for the safety of her homeland.
Find it: Xiaowuji North Road, Chaoyang District
Whether it’s a full night out, or early to bed, ChinaTours.com can help create the Beijing nightlife experience you’d love to have. With our local guides knowledgeable about what’s on, and contactable 24 hours a day, you’re in safe hands. So unwind and relax with your Beijing getaway and leave the rest to us!
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