The 11 Best Beijing Neighborhoods to Stay in 2019
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The 11 Best Beijing Neighborhoods to Stay in 2019

By LilyUpdated Mar. 18, 2021

Knowing Beijing city's areas before you choose where to stay in Beijing can make a huge difference to your travel experiences. Beijing is one of the 10 largest cities in the world (with a population of 21 Million). It is as big as New York and bigger than any other city outside Asia. Its many different areas have different characteristics and different benefits for travelers. Find out the best areas for tourism, shopping, nightlife, air quality, business, cost, green spaces, transport, families, and stopovers.

11 Best Beijing Neighborhoods to Stay

Where to stay in Beijing - Answers organized by Traveler Type

First-Timers and Sightseeing Travelers

1. Qianmen Street: a central location, south of the Forbidden City, the most convenient area for sightseeing, the majority of first-timers’ choice

2. Wangfujing Street: a paradise for shopaholics, east of the Forbidden City

Families with Children

3. The hutongs: a quaint old residential neighborhood dating back to ancient Beijing, stylish courtyard hotels and bars, lakeside relaxation opportunities, lower costs

4. Chaoyang Park: the largest park in Beijing, miles of green space, child-friendly, suitable if traveling on a budget

5. Zhongguancun: university neighborhoods, near both summer palaces and Beijing Zoo, more green space, better air quality, lower costs

6. Beijing Olympic Park: north of downtown Beijing, large green space, the best air quality

Business Travelers and Layovers

7. Beijing Central Business District: includes the China World Trade Center (Guomao) and the CMG Headquarters; the choice of business travelers; the new Beijing area

8. Beijing Capital International Airport: the simplest solution for layover and transit visitors, 1½-hour subway journey to the city center via the Airport Express line

(Beijing Olympic Park is also good as the Beijing International Convention Center and a handful of luxury hotel chains are there.)

Young People and Night Owls

9. Sanlitun and the Workers’ Stadium: night owls’ favorite clubbing area, an expat hub, trendy with Western-style cafés, close to embassies

(Houhai Bar Street in the hutongs is also a good choice for youths.)

Travelers on a Tight Budget

10. Beijing Railway Station or Beijing South/West Railway Station: cheap costs, the available choices for travelers arriving from Tianjin or leaving for Xi’an/Shanghai for further trips

(Chaoyang Park is also a good choice if you’re traveling on a budget.)

Experienced Travelers, Off the Beaten Path Choices

11.Outside of or near to the Great Wall sections: good choices for discerning travelers preferring to travel off the beaten path

1. Qianmen Street: best area for sightseeing - No. 1 first-timers’ choice

Advantages:

Qianmen DashilarQianmen Dashilar Street

Disadvantages:

Subway: Take Line 2 to Qianmen Station (前门). It’s about 1 hour from the airport via the Airport Express line.

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse: 20–40 USD; mid-range, 3–4 stars, 50–100 USD, Dong Fang Hotel Beijing; luxury 5-star rating, 100–200 USD, New World Beijing Hotel

2. Wangfujing Street: best area for shopaholics, just east of the Forbidden City

Advantages:

Wanfujing StreetWanfujing Street

Disadvantages:

Subway: Take Line 1 and get off at Wangfujing Station (王府井).

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 30–50 USD; mid-range, 3–4 stars, 60–100 USD, Holiday Inn Express and Novotel Beijing Peace; luxury 5-star rating, 130–210 USD, The Peninsula Beijing and Hilton Beijing Wangfujing

3. The Hutongs:  best choice for culture lovers, history-filled residential neighborhoods

What is a hutong ? Hutongs are quaint alleyways connecting historic residences known as courtyards or siheyuan.

Advantages:

Hutong CourtyardHutong Courtyard

Disadvantages:

Subway: Lines 6 and Line 8 meet at Nanluoguxiang Station (南锣鼓巷). Both lines are connected to Line 2 heading to Tian’anmen Square.

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 30–40 USD; mid-range, 3–4 stars, 50–80 USD, Jingshan Garden Hotel (a courtyard hotel) and Beijing 161 Lama Temple Courtyard Hotel; luxury 5-star rating, 100–170 USD, Beijing Ruyuan Courtyard

4. Chaoyang Park: best area for children and budget travelers

Advantages:

Chaoyang ParkChaoyang Park

Disadvantages:

Subway: It takes 1 hour to reach the downtown area on Line 14 with a transfer to Line 1. It takes 40 minutes by taxi to reach Beijing Capital International Airport, which is 22 kilometers away to the northeast.

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 40–60 USD, Lab Hostel; mid-range quality chains, 3–4 stars, 60–90 USD, Home Inn; luxury 5-star rating, 100–200 USD, Four Seasons Hotel Beijing

5. The University Neighborhood - near the summer palaces, green spaces

Advantages:

Summer PalaceSummer Palace

Disadvantages:

Subway: Line 2 and Line 4 are useful and it only takes 45 minutes to reach Tian’anmen Square.

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 30 USD; mid-range 3–4 stars, 50–70 USD, Holiday Inn Beijing; luxury 5-star rating, 80–130 USD, Tylfull Hotel

6. Beijing Olympic Park - large green spaces; best air quality in town

Advantages:

Beijing National StadiumBeijing National Stadium

Disadvantages:

Subway: Take Line 8 and transfer to Line 2 to reach the downtown area in 1 hour, or take a taxi to get there in 35 minutes.

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 50 USD; mid-range 3–4 stars, 70–90 USD, Holiday Inn Beijing; luxury 5-star rating, 90–300 USD, Crowne Plaza Beijing Sun Palace

7. Beijing Central Business District: best choice for business travelers 

Advantages:

CCTV HeadquarterCGM/CCTV Headquarters

Disadvantages:

Subway: Line 1 and Line 10 meet at Guomao. It takes 20 minutes to get to Tian’anmen Square via Line 1, and 1 hour 10 minutes to reach Beijing Capital International Airport via the Airport Express line.

Prices and recommendations: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 50–70 USD; mid-range quality chains, 3–4 stars, 70–100 USD; luxury 5-star rating, 130–250 USD, Kerry Hotel, Beijing and Jianguo Hotel Beijing. Learn more about the Best Business Hotels in Beijing CBD Area.

8. Beijing Capital International Airport: best area for layovers

Beijing Capital AirportBeijing Capital Airport

Location: Beijing Capital International Airport is located 32 kilometers (20 miles) northeast of the city center. It takes 50 minutes by taxi or 1½ hours by the Airport Express line to get to the downtown area.

Advantages: It is easy for transiting and a good hotel for us to recommend is CITIC Hotel Beijing Airport (4-star). It is a family-friendly hotel and is reasonably priced, according to feedback from our customers.

Check 10 things you must know about Beijing layover.

Disadvantages:

Please note: Basically, if you have a layover in Beijing Capital International Airport for more than 8 hours and don’t want to miss the chance to see this fascinating city, the Great Wall, or the Forbidden City, just inquire about 1 Day Beijing Great Wall Layover tour, which is timed wisely to suit your flight schedule and is worry-free.

9. Sanlitun: night owls’ best area; trendy and artsy

Advantages: 

Disadvantages:

Subway: Take Line 8 and transfer to Line 2 to reach the downtown area in 1 hour or take a taxi to get there in 35 minutes.

Recommendations and prices: budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 50–70 USD; mid-range quality chains, 3–4 stars, 70–100 USD; luxury 5-star rating, 130–250 USD, InterContinental Beijing Sanlitun and The Opposite House

10. The Railway Stations - cheaper hotel costs; convenient for train travel

All the railway stations listed below are well-connected by metro lines and are very convenient for travelers to come and go. The accommodation fees around these areas are cheaper although the drawbacks of these neighborhoods are that they can be crowded and are not among the most desirable areas.

Prices and recommendations (Beijing Railway Station): budget guesthouse ≤2 stars: 30–50 USD, Peking Station Hostel; mid-range, 3–4 stars, 60–80 USD, Howard Johnson Paragon Hotel Beijing; luxury 5-star rating, 90–150 USD, New World Beijing Hotel

11. Near the Great Wall: the best off-the-beaten-path choice for discerning travelers

Advantages:

Simatai Great WallSimatai Great Wall

Recommendations:

hot spring

1. Best Hotels Near the Great Wall

2. Ski Resorts and Hot Spring Resorts Between the City and the Great Wall:Beijing has 10 ski resorts and 5 hot spring resorts to meet all types of travelers’ needs and standards.

3. Ancient Villages Further North of the Great Wall:There are 6 beautiful ancient villages around Beijing and most of them are further north than the Great Wall. They are good getaway places for natural charm and folk culture.

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