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The 6 Most Beautiful Ancient Villages around Beijing

cuandixia villageCuandixia Village alley

Autumn around Beijing is a beautiful time of year. It is not difficult to find somewhere to enjoy the autumn scenery peacefully since there are various traditional ancient villages away from the modern city. 

You can enjoy both the natural landscape and the folk culture of the area. Below we recommend to you the six "must-visit" ancient villages of the Beijing area.

1. Diaowo Village in Pinggu District (平谷雕窝村)

Diaowo Village has beautiful and pleasing scenery. It is located northeast of Huangsongyu Town (黄松峪乡) and is surrounded on three sides by mountains and on the fourth by a river. There are over 100 villagers living here. The residents are enthusiastic and earnest, and there is an unusual artistic atmosphere.

Visitors are often able to spend nights with the residents in their farmhouses and enjoy home-cooked meals. The famous "whole baked sheep" is strongly recommended, and the taste of each family’s dish is quite different.

Besides the beautiful scenery and delicious food that is also found in other villages around Beijing, the artistic atmosphere there is unique. Many famous writers and artists come to experience life in the village. There are seven art academies in the village, so the village is also known as the "Village of Art" in the eastern Beijing area. You will find collections of works by famous artists preserved in almost every family that indicates an optimistic view of life. 

There are three main attractions near the village: Hudongshui Lake (湖洞水), Shilin Valley and Feilong Valley.

  • Accommodation: 30–200 yuan per night
  • Address: Diaowo Village in Huangsongyu Town, Pinggu district (平谷区黄松峪乡雕窝村)
  • Bus route: Take express bus 918 to Pinggu District Hospital, and then take bus 25 or 26 to Diaowo Village.
  • Car route: Drive along the airport highway to Pinggu district, and then turn to drive toward the big cavern to the east of Beijing. There are green leaf-shaped signs along the roads. Just follow the signs "Jinghai Lake (金海湖) → Big Caverns (大溶洞) → Diaowo Village," and you will reach the village after going through several tight turns and passing the reservoir.

2. Folk Culture Ancient Village in Yanqing County (延庆古城民俗村)

This village in Jiuxian Township of Yanqing County (延庆县旧县镇) has a long history dating back to the Western Han Dynasty. Tourists like its blessed geography and the natural landscape of Longqing Valley (龙庆峡). 

Now there are over 100 families, and the village can accommodate over 1,500 tourists at the same time who enjoy the outdoor activities and the countryside scenery. You can choose to pick fruits or harvest vegetables, fish, go horse-riding, and experience other agricultural activities such as rice-milling. Or just leisurely experience the local folk culture.

For entertainment, there is the Agritainment (古城农家乐) Hotel. Your can enjoy their kangs, a heated bed common in the countryside, here in the winter. Outside the Agritainment, there is an open space for campfires with an area of 2,000 square meters. Sitting by the campfire with a cup of milk tea, you will enjoy being in nature.

The hotel serves delicious corn cakes, potato cakes and corn noodles that are popular among the tourists.There is also a 3,000-square-meter orchard nearby for you to pick fresh fruit.

  • Address: Ancient City Ancient Village, Longqing Valley, Yanqing County, Beijing (北京市延庆龙庆峡古城民俗村)
  • Bus route: Take bus 919 from Deshengmen to Yanqing County, and then transfer to bus 920, the loop line.
  • Car route: Drive along the Badaling Highway (八达岭高速) to Longqing Valley Parking Lot (龙庆峡停车场) in Yanqing County, and the village will be 200 meters south of the road.

3. Cuandixia Village (爨底下村)

cuandixia villageCuandixia Village

With the ancient style and features of this village well preserved, and the buildings divided into two neat rows, Cuandixia Village is known as the "Potala Palace in Beijing".

This quaint little village is more attractive than you can imagine. The quadrangle courtyards built in the Ming and Qing dynasties are perfectly proportioned, and most of the houses are built with stones from the mountains outside town.

Lattice windows, kang beds, fire-red hot peppers, golden corn — everything combines to produce a jubilant atmosphere.

In the village, you will also have the chance to taste many delicious dishes such as braised pork with vermicelli, deep-fried fish, braised tofu, wild-vegetable salad, steamed pumpkin and red bean rice. More Cuandixia Village>>

  • Accommodation: 30–200 yuan per night
  • Address: Cuanbai scenic spot in Zhaitang Town, Mentougou district, Beijing (北京市门头沟区斋堂镇爨柏景区)
  • Bus route: Take bus 929 from Pingguoyuan Railway Station (苹果园地铁口) to Zhaitang Town (斋堂), and then take a taxi to the village. There is a bus every hour and the last bus will leave at 3:00 p.m. going back from Zhaitang Town. You can also charter a bus to go to the village directly for about 100 yuan.
  • Car route: Cuandixia Village is over 90 km away from Beijing. Turn right at the Shuangyu roundabout (双峪环岛) in Mentougou district toward the Longquan Hotel (龙泉宾馆). Then drive along National Highway 109 and follow the signs to reach the village.

4. Liugou Ancient Village in Yanqing County (延庆柳沟村)

Located in the southeast of Yanqing County, Liugou Folk Village is surrounded by mountains on three sides. There are willow trees and ravines formed by floods all around the village area. This is where the name "Liugou" (willows and ravines) comes from. The people here are simple and honest, and the local attractions draw tourists.

In winter, with steaming hot Liugou Tofu in the casserole and hot drinks, a trip to Liugou Village is extremely enjoyable. Do not miss the "Tofu Feast" on your visit.

Near the village, there are several famous attractions such as the Badaling Great Wall (八达岭长城), Longqing Valley, the Kangxi Grasslands (康西草原), and the Guanting Reservoir (官厅水库).

  • Bus route: Take bus 919 to Yanqing County and then transfer to another bus to reach Liugou Village.
  • Car route: Drive along the Badaling Highway to the north to Yanqing County, and then on to Liugou Village.

5. Zhuanghu Ancient Village by the Great Wall of China (庄户民俗村)

Near Xiangshui Lake (响水湖) in Huairou District (怀柔区), there is a folk village named Zhuanghu Village. The village is making a great effort to develop its tourism industry recently with its picturesque scenery, elegant environment, earnest residents, the ancient Great Wall and Xiangshui Lake nearby.

The village is on the west side of Bohai County in Huairou District and is 80 km from Beijing. It is surrounded by mountains. At present there are 48 families and 120 people living in the village.

There are currently 32 host families capable of accommodating 200 tourists at one time. The apples and Chinese chestnuts there are famous, and as the seasons change, you can try more than 100 kinds of wild vegetables and other foods.

Sitting on the second floor of the village leader’s house, you can see the Great Wall stretching off into the distance barely visible in the rain and quite beautiful. The leader channeled the mountain spring into his house to create an artificial fountain, and you shouldn’t miss the tasty roast fish that he cooks!

  • Bus route: Take bus 916 from Dongzhimen (东直门) bus stop to Huairou Main Station (怀柔总站), and then transfer to the scheduled bus to Zhuanghu that leaves at 7:00 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. every day. It takes an hour to reach Zhuanghu. The bus back to Huairou leaves at 8:00 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.
  • Car route 1: Start from Siyuanqiao (四元桥), drive along the North Fourth Ring Road for 2 km – Wanghe Bridge (望和桥) for 719 meters – Jingcheng Highway for 30 km and get off at Beishicao Exit (北石槽出) – turn left (283 meters) – turn right to Huangchang Road (怀昌路) for 8 km – turn left to Taiguan Road (台关路) for 10 km – turn left (235 meters) – turn left to Huaihuang Road (怀黄路) for 7 km – 57 meters straight – turn right to Huaihuang Road for 8 km – turn right and drive 6 km – arrive at Zhuanghu Folk Village.
  • Car route 2: Start from Sanyuanqiao (三元桥) – Jingshun Road (京顺路) – Huairou Viaduct (怀柔立交) – Yingbin Roundabout (迎宾环岛) – Yingbin Road (迎宾路) – turn left at the roundabout – Qingchun Road (青春路) straight – Mutianyu Road straight – Xiangshui Lake (响水湖) – turn right at Nanye Bridge (南冶大桥) – turn right at Xiangshui Lake Road crossing.

6. Beigou Village (怀柔北沟村)

Located at the foot of the Great Wall at Mutianyu  (慕田峪长城), Beigou Village is only 2 km from the Great Wall. There are Chinese chestnuts in the village and all over the mountain. Beyond the mountain stands the ancient Great Wall, which is the most attractive sight in the village.

The houses in Beigou Village are built into the terrain, and the rooms are well proportioned and tidy. The roads are very clean, and you will never find cigarette butts or other rubbish strewn about. In the village you will truly be able to relax and return to nature.

For dining, there are three little restaurants selling both Chinese and Western food opened up by the American Sayang and his wife from California. You can enjoy both well-brewed American coffee and traditional Chinese meals in company with the great landscape of the Great Wall.

  • Accommodation: 100–150 yuan per night
  • Address: Beigou Village in Bohai Town, Huairou district (怀柔区渤海镇北沟村)
  • Bus route: Take bus 916 from Dongzhimen to North Street in Huairou, and then take the scheduled bus toward Tianxianyu (田仙峪) and get off at Beigou Village.
  • Car route: Get off the Jingcheng Highway at the Huairou exit (怀柔口), go through Huairou toward the north to Mutianyu, and go straight for another 100 meters at the Mutianyu Roundabout (慕田峪环岛). Turn right and follow the signs for about 3 km until you reach the village.

Beijing Regional Tours

Badaling Great WallBadaling Great Wall tour

You could combine a stay or visit at one of these villages with a visit to the Great Wall. Liugou is near Badaling, and Beigou Village is less than a kilometer from Mutianyu. You could stay in the villages during a hike of the wall.

Check out our best selling Beijing tour: Four-Day Essence Tour Of Beijing

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