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Beijing Hutong

In many people's minds, Beijing is associated with hutongs. These are small alleyways where people live together in communities of homes packed into a small area. The architecture is intriguing, but it is more than just the architecture that draws visitors. The hutongs represent the people who live there and are a museum of Beijing's folk customs and a witness to the city's history. Beijing is the only city in China that has them.

Since the Ming Dynasty, hutongs and siheyuan (courtyard homes) have been the signature features of Beijing 's urban landscape. These homes traditionally are comprised of buildings built around an enclosed courtyard. In modern times many of these areas have now been developed and as a result these distinctive symbols of Beijing are disappearing.


The beautiful snowscape of Beijing hutong alleyway. Beijing Siheyuan represents the capital's architectural style.

The narrowness of the alleyways and of many courtyard homes discourages heavy traffic and encourages residents to live their lives on the street, fostering a strong sense of community. The pace of life in these neighborhoods is less hurried than on Beijing 's broad modern avenues and the noise is less grating. It is common to see the residents playing cards, Chinese chess, Mahjong, or simply chatting with each other. The hutongs are like village within the megalopolis. As you wander through them, you may feel as though you have stepped back in time.

Many hutongs have disappeared in the past decade to make way for modern apartment buildings and wider roads. Fortunately, some historic neighborhoods are being preserved. In this respect, visitors can see Beijing as an ancient yet modern city. We suggest going on foot since this will allow you to soak in the atmosphere, move at your own pace, and observe the small details that make hutongs unique. Renting a bicycle is also a good option, this way you can cover more ground and rest your feet. Hiring a rickshaw is also a fun way to go.

Beijing Tours With Hutong

Pick up from your hotel between 7:00am and 8:30am → Drive to Beijing Zoo for the lovely Giant Pandas → Yonghe Temple, the largest Lama Temple of Beijing → Visit a Chinese traditional handicraft silk carpet factory → Have lunch at a local Beijing family's house→ Touring through the Hutongs of "old Beijing" by rickshaw for two hours, visit the traditonal courtyard, maze-like lanes and bell towers etc. → A short exterior visit to the main Olympics' Venues --Bird's Nest and Water Cube → Enjoy tea ceremony at a China Tea House → Transferred back to your hotel.   Read Details
This tour features taking you to discover more exotic mysteries about the locals' life style of Beijing. Besides, it provides you with major lures of Beijing. For instance, you will visit Tian'an men Square which is the landmark of the nation; Forbidden city, Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace will lead you to the history and culture exploration of China...   Read Details
This tour will lead you to experience the ancient Beijing and modern Beijing. You will visit Tian'an men Square which is the landmark of the nation; Forbidden city, Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace will lead you to the history and culture exploration of China; you can also have a trip to Badaling Great Wall; At South Luogu Lane, Hutong walking tour would let you know more about the locals' life style...   Read Details
Let us take you on a magical tour of Beijing that offers colorful activities and amusements for children and parents, a dynamic metropolies where the rich heritage of old meets new provides a living culture of diverse contrasts and excitement. In this tour, you will explore details of must-see attractions, meaningful activities in Beijing. It is not only satisfy your eyes by visiting Badaling Great Wall, Forbidden City...   Read Details

Top Beijing Attractions

  • Badaling Great Wall: This is the best-preserved and most imposing section of the Great wall is approximately 3,741 meters(2.3 miles) long and was of great strategic importance in ancient times.
  • Temple of Heaven: This temple complex is an architectural wonder featuring the triple-roofed "Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest" where the emperor went to worship heaven and pray for the coming harvest.
  • The Forbidden City: One of the world's most beautiful architectural complexes, this served as China's imperial palace for almost five centuries. Its massive scale and majestic design are overwhelming.
  • Summer Palace: Once serving as the imperial summer getaway, it ranks as one of the most visited and most classical gardens in the world. It's size and splendor will leave you a lasting impression.

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