25 Best Bars in Beijing, China

Great Leap Brewing #6

Dongcheng District Fodor's choice

At Beijing's first proper microbrewery, the beers are made with ingredients such as tea and Sichuan peppercorns. Don't miss the bar peanuts—spicy and salty, they'll keep you going back to the bar for just one more brew. This place has been so successful, in fact, that the owners have since opened a much-larger flagship in Liangmaqiao, which also serves food.


Dongcheng District Fodor's choice
Specializing in all things spritzy, from Americano cocktails to Negronis, this place is relaxed and intimate on weekdays and often packed during weekend DJ events. Feel the need to line your stomach? The excellent-value platters of arancini (Italian, deep-fried risotto balls) are just the ticket.


Chaoyang Fodor's choice
Though hard to find, this treasure of a cocktail bar is worth the effort. Miami Vice meets Riviera chic in the slick interior, featuring double-height ceilings and lacquered, monochromatic floor tiles. Cocktails are simply named but artfully made thanks to okra, mustard seed, and other imaginative ingredients. Very cool.
4 Gongti Bei Lu, Beijing, Beijing, 10001, China

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Dongcheng District

Tucked inside a tiny hutong near the western end of Houhai, 4Corners has a working fireplace in the winter and a breezy patio in the summer. There's inventive, pan-Asian cuisine from its Vietnamese-Canadian chef-owner, delicious cocktails, and refreshing beer such as Vedett White on tap.

27 Dashibei Hutong, Beijing, Beijing, 100009, China



Home to nostalgia-fueled theme nights, including 80s and disco, Alfa is a hopping little dance spot that's particularly popular with local gay men.

6 Xingfu Yicun, Beijing, Beijing, China

Cargo Club


Fierce promotions have attracted some top-name international DJs to this spot: in spite of the smallish dance floor, many expats consider Cargo the best mainstream club along Gongti Xilu. Perhaps it's the 1980s kitsch.

6 Gongti Xilu, Beijing, Beijing, 100020, China

China Bar


Perched atop the 65-story Park Hyatt, this upmarket cocktail bar offers bird's-eye views of the city, smog and all. Dark and sultry, the modern Asian decor is minimalist and doesn't distract from the views, or the drinks. Cocktails are expertly mixed; Scotch purists can choose from a 20-plus strong list of single malts.

2 Jianguomenwai Dajie, Beijing, Beijing, 100022, China

Cu Ju

Dongcheng District

Proprietor Badr Benjelloun is a Moroccan expat who's lived in the city for many years and has myriad interests. This fun bar is the culmination of all his many passions, including rum, Moroccan food, and sporting events. Like many of Beijing's best hutong bars, it can be a bit tricky to find, but is well worth it once you're there.



Raising the bar for bars in Beijing, this New York–style lounge is swank, spacious, and has an innovative drink list. This is where many of the city's cool kids like to hang, and the doormen occasionally restrict entry to the more dapperly dressed. It's a bit tricky to find: if you are facing Q Mex, then walk down the lane that runs north–south, parallel to the side of that building.

Gongti Beilu, Beijing, Beijing, 100027, China

Dada Bar

Dongcheng District

A chilled-out, unpretentious place where you can dance, Dada is the sort of underground club a cool older cousin might have once sneaked you into. Talented resident and guest DJs from all over the world perform, and you can expect industrial-chic decor and cheap, strong drinks. It's a great final destination on a night out, and beloved by both long-term expats and local scenesters.

206 Gulou Dongdajie, Beijing, Beijing, China



The city's best and most popular gay club has a bouncy dance floor, energetic DJs, and a small lounge area. It gets extremely packed on weekends and attracts a varied crowd of almost all male expats and locals. Unlike most places in Beijing, there's a cover here.

7 Gongti Xilu, Beijing, Beijing, 100020, China

East Shore Live Jazz Café

Xicheng District

There's no competition: This place has the most fabulous views of Houhai Lake, hands-down, and authentic jazz on stage every night.

2 Qianhai Nanyanlu, Beijing, Beijing, 100009, China

El Nido

Dongcheng District

Little more than a hole in the wall, this hutong gem is stuffed to the gills with imported beers, fine cheeses and charcuterie, and the owner's homemade infused liquors. In the summer, it's a little roomier, since overflow crowds spill onto picnic tables set up in the front. El Nido is a great first stop of the night. If you aren't feeling the crowds, grab some bottles to go and sip on the streets with the rest of the Beijng old-timers—and thank your lucky stars for the lack of open container laws.

59 Fangjia Hutong, Beijing, Beijing, China

First Floor


An unpretentious bar perfect for a night out with friends, First Floor is the sort of place where you stop in for one, and end up drinking through to the early hours. Expect a relaxed but busy crowd, with plenty of friendly folk happy to strike up a conversation while the beer keeps flowing. Happy hour runs from 5–9pm.

Sanlitun Houjie, Beijing, Beijing, China



This tiny bar is the place to go if you're a discerning whiskey drinker—there are hundreds of varieties on offer. The dimly lit interior, minimalist decor, and hushed conversation give it an air of exclusivity—it's worthy of James Bond. Drinks are taken very seriously here, and it shows in both the quality of the alcohol and the professionalism with which it's mixed by the Japanese-led bar staff. The entrance is via stairs at the south wall of the Chaoyang Theatre.

36 Dongsanhuan Beilu, Beijing, Beijing, 100025, China


Haidian District

The go-to hangout in the university district of Wudaokou, Lush is a home-away-from-home for many a homesick exchange student. With weekly pub quizzes, open-mike nights, and large, strong drinks, Lush is an excellent place to start the night for those in this part of town.

Mao Mao Chong

Dongcheng District

This bar is known for top-quality infused cocktails, including a chili-infused vodka Bloody Mary and a Sichuan peppercorn Moscow Mule. Another standout is the owners’ own Bangkok Hilton: Thai tea–infused Scotch, crème de cassis, bitters, syrup made from pandanus (screw pine) leaves, and an orange twist. The pizzas and artwork are an added reason to stop in.

12 Banchang Hutong, Beijing, Beijing, China
nightlife Details
Rate Includes: Closed Mon.



Behind an Italian-fusion restaurant amid several establishments along an unassuming strip mall near Chaoyang Park, Mokihi is a haven from the hustle and bustle of everyday Beijing. Have the Japanese-trained bartenders mix up one of their signature cocktails, and nibble on delightful hors d'oeuvres while engaging in quiet conversation.

Haoyun Jie (Lucky St.), Beijing, Beijing, China


Dongcheng District

This warehouse-style space is way more interesting than the competition. Without the usual gaudy decor, Tango is roomy enough to take the crowds, and often plays some very loud, but good music. Beijing's best midsize live-music venue is on the third floor and (unimaginatively) called Tango 3F.

79 Hepingli Xijie, Beijing, Beijing, 100007, China

The Black Moth

Set on the fourth floor of the Mediterranean-style Nali Patio, this cocktail bar is an oasis of quirky sophistication overlooking the drunken revelry of the Sanlintun nightlife district below. Unconventional art adorns its walls, and creative concoctions—hot goji-berry tea spiked with rum, for example—are offered alongside classics on its drink menu.
81 Sanlitun Lu, Beijing, Beijing, 100001, China

The Den


This old-school joint's main attractions are the sports showing on its wide-screen TVs and the fact that it never, ever shuts. It's buzzing every night, especially during happy hour, when you can grab half-price drinks and pizza until 10 pm. This is also the social HQ for the city's amateur rugby club, so you'll often find its players in here, drinking rowdily. Yes, it's somewhat of a dive bar, populated by a questionable cast of characters in the small hours, but it's also an always-reliable watering hole, too.

4 Gongti Donglu, Beijing, Beijing, 100020, China

The Tree


For years now, expats have crowded this bar for its Belgian beer, wood-fired pizza, and quiet murmurs of conversation. It does, however, get a bit smoky; if you're sensitive you may want to give this venue a pass. For pasta instead of pizza, there's always Nearby the Tree just 100 yards to the southeast.

The World of Suzie Wong


It's no coincidence that this bar is named after a 1957 novel (and 1960 film) about a Hong Kong prostitute. Come here late at night and, as well as groups of friends on the dance floor, you're also likely to find those on the prowl, and in search of a good time. The vibe is enhanced by the 1930s-opium-den design, with China-chic beds overrun with cushions. Over the years, Suzie Wong's has built a reputation for decent cocktails and good, crowd-pleasing music. It has, however, begun to drop off the local party circuit in recent years.

1A Nongzhanguan Lu, Beijing, Beijing, 100026, China



Twilight is an oasis of cool in the otherwise somewhat-dry Central Business District (CBD). Have the bartender make you a perfect old-fashioned, which you can pair with one of the bar's tasty pizzas.

39 Dongsanhuan Zhonglu, Beijing, Beijing, China


Dongcheng District

The Emperor Hotel's rooftop terrace bar certainly has the "wow" factor when it comes to the view of the Forbidden City; there's even a hot tub on hand if you need to relax. Unsurprisingly, drink prices are high, and it tends to be too empty for real fun but, befitting the hotel's design focus, red lanterns and fashionably outfitted staff add to the classiness of the experience. If only it had a bit more buzz.

33 Qihelou Dajie, Beijing, Beijing, 100006, China