Beautiful Bars in Beijing for 2022 🍺 Best Hutong Bars You Must Visit

Best Bars in Beijing 2022 🍹 LTL’s Guide to Alleyway Drinking Spots

Best Hutong Bars - Modernista Swing night
Best Hutong Bars – Modernista Swing night

We’re continuing our Best Bars in Beijing series, as you remember our last article was Best Hotel Bars in Beijing now it’s time the for Best Hutong Bars in Beijing.

Beijing is the heart of China with its 5,000 year history and unique culture.

Beijing us a unique city for its hutongs alone and that is where we put our focus today. For Beijing’s alleyways host a number of wonderful drinking hotspots!

Call us crazy but we fell in love and can never get enough of everything Beijing has to offer.

Even after living here for decades we can always find something new to discover.

For those of you who have no idea what hutongs are:“胡同 hu·tong (noun) – a narrow lane or alleyway in a traditional residential area of a Chinese city, especially Beijing.” – Oxford Dictionary

Please don’t get mistaken and think that Beijing is only hutongs and nothing more. 

Beijing is a big, modern city with a lot of interesting architecture but the hutongs are really what make this metropolis unique.

Beijing hutongs
Beijing Hutong Alleyway

You will be amazed how on one side of the street there are huge, modern offices, while on the other, there are these famous narrow alleyways.

Hutongs have a special feel to them and it is always interesting to wander around and very easy to get lost in them.

They are very popular among foreigners here because of the atmosphere and, of course, because they are home to some of the best bars in the city.

So while you’re here taking your Chinese courses or visiting Beijing as a tourist or living here as a professional why not do some exploring at the same time? We’ve put together a list of our favourite hutong drinking spots to help you along your way…

Some of the bars we’ve mentioned before when we shared the Best Deals in Beijing and some we mentioned when talked about Beijing’s Hidden Gems now it’s time to put all of them together and get best out of the best!

Best Hutong Bars: Modernista

Best Hutong Bars: El Nido

Best Hutong Bars: Mai Bar

Best Hutong Bars: Tiki Bungalow

Best Hutong Bars: Nugget

Best Bars in Beijing : Hutong Edition – Modernista

Best-Hutong-Bars
Film showing at Modernista

Modernista is a favourite bar for many expats.

It deserved its spot due to their great cocktails that won’t break the bank, delicious food and amazing bands they invite to play, nightly.

If that didn’t convince you enough, then look at their amazing design. The bar is sound proofed, and has hidden room where all the fun starts.

They also have weekly events like salsa classes every Monday, Drink and Draw every Tuesday and Swing Dance classes every Wednesday. Not a fan of dancing?

WE LOVE – Maybe the Sunday Jazz sessions are more up your street?

When you walk down the hutong street outside you won’t hear a thing due to the sound proofing.

Even once you enter the place you might think it’s just a normal restaurant with small bar, but if you venture further inside you’ll be surprised at the actual size of the place and what it has to offer. A real speak-easy feel!

Best Bars in Beijing : Hutong Edition – El Nido

This hutong bar is tucked away just off Beiluoguxiang behind a pair of red doors. Step inside and you’ll find yourself in a lovely courtyard with outdoor seating and also roof seating in summer.

Best-Hutong-Bars

On the north side is El Nido, former occupant of Fangjia Hutong prior to the “brickening” it has found a new home here and we couldn’t be more happy!

El Nido is one of Beijing’s many brew pubs and has a wide range of different beers on offer (do watch out though, some of them can be a little pricey).

If beer isn’t really your thing then that’s no problem because in the same courtyard on the south side is Fang Bar (another “brickening” victim) which offers a wide range of delicious cocktails. You can order drink from Fang Bar and take them to El Nido and vice versa.

El Nido also serve a range of food including some great sharing platters such as a cheese board, cold cuts platter or a mix of both and they are very reasonably priced!

We believe there is nothing more exciting than coming to Beijing and trying it yourself.

Best Bars in Beijing : Hutong Edition – Mai Bar

Best-Hutong-Bars

Mai bar is often mistaken with Mei bar which is located in Rosewood Hotel. Though the names are similar, Mai bar is a very different experience to Mei.

Mai bar is located in Hutongs and the owner of the bar wanted to give his customers a home like feel when visiting the place.

That’s why he came up with the name ‘Mai’ as it’s pronounced similar to the word ‘my’. The bar specialises in cocktails and trust us they are well priced and well made.

Best Bars in Beijing - Hotel Bars Thumbnail

Best Bars in Beijing – Hotel Bars

Top 5 Hotel Bars in Beijing for 2022 Today we’ll cover the best hotel bars in Beijing. These bars are not only beautiful high, end places, but they are also fun to be in. And, you don’t have to spend…

Best Bars in Beijing : Hutong Edition – Tiki Bungalow

Best-Hutong-Bars
Best Hutong Bars-Tiki Bungalow

You want to escape the feeling of a big busy city?

Want to plan a fun holiday on the beach?

Or maybe you just want to dream about being at a beach bar?

Tiki bungalow will help you feel like you’re on a beach vacation with it’s cocktails served with fresh fruits and a selection of nice rums.

If you want to experience the best of both worlds, a mix of being in a very Chinese neighbourhood with feeling like you’re on a summer holiday, then welcome to Tiki Bungalow!

Best Bars in Beijing : Hutong Edition – Nugget

Best-Hutong-Bars

Now Nugget is not only just a bar but also a cafe, live music venue, recording studio and music store all rolled into one! It’s a truly unique place especially because all of the music on sale there is on cassette tape.

Not only all of that but Nugget also host an array of events each week which are sure to keep you entertained:

  • Tuesday – Weekly drag screening
  • Wednesday – Craft night (the craft changes each week)
  • Thursday – Drink and draw
  • Sunday – Retro games night

Along with this they have a fridge full of a variety of beer, a great cocktail menu and hot beverages like coffee available too so no matter the time of day it’s a great place to visit!

Best Coffee Shops in Beijing (for 2022) Thumbnail

Best Coffee Shops in Beijing (for 2022)

Have a look at LTL Mandarin School’s list of best coffee shops in Beijing to find the perfect place for you to grab a cup of joe. There’s plenty of choice!

Bars in Beijing – FAQ’s

Are there many bars in Beijing?

Yes, Beijing is full of bars in all areas, whether it be in the student area of Haidian or the international area around Sanlitun which hosts a large area of foreign style bars

Are bars in Beijing expensive?

It depends where you go but generally you will be paying more in Beijing than most other Chinese cities bar perhaps Shanghai. There are still plenty of great deals to be had though

Is there a mix of Chinese and foreigners in Beijing bars?

Yes there are. Some bars have become popular hotspots for foreigners to meet but still host Chinese locals.

What is the best place to drink as a foreigner in Beijing?

Sanlitun is probably the most popular place for foreigners in Beijing to drink.

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  • LTL Avatar Irene Magnosi
    Irene Magnosi , Student Advisor

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