Top 10 Things To Do At Night In Beijing, China: A Nighttime Stroll In The Forbidden City - Updated 2023

things to do in beijing at night
| 6 min read

Like any other places offering unique views in the morning and a different vibe by night, a visit to Beijing will never be complete without witnessing its charm after sunset. Maximize your stay in this part of China and discover the many interesting things to do at night in Beijing to let you see the other side of the Forbidden City. Whether you are looking for a night market for shopping and food tasting, or just what to get wild and do bar hopping, the city’s nightlife is always up to keep you company. Sit back and relax as we’ve listed down the top 10 things to do at night in Beijing that you should consider to include in your itinerary rather than spending the night in the four corners of your hotel.

1. Catch an acrobatic show at Chaoyang Theatre (from USD 66.0)

Enjoy a thrilling night of high-flying and death-defying acts at Chaoyang Theatre that is famous for its colorful flying acrobatic shows. Be amazed by the graceful choreography of the league of professional ballet dancers and truly talented performers promising its local and foreign audiences a jaw-dropping night to remember. Offering 75-minute of performance in every show, you will surely leave the theatre with loads of memories and stunning photos. Make sure to book your tickets in advance via online for discounted deals or thru some travel agencies for the venue fills up fast and the theater has only three shows daily.

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Chaoyang Theatre Acrobatic Show with round-trip transfer

Duration: 2 hours

2. Watch a kungfu show at Red Theatre (from USD 29.0)

Watch kungfu fight in a live action scene performed by a professional team of Shaolin actors in Red Theatre. Whether you are a fan of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan, or just want to see how Kungfu Panda in real-life action should be, you will definitely can’t help but to gasp some air and applause after the performance. Get lost in time as the fusion of modern dance and Chinese traditional martial arts filled the theater with unique and spectacular performances. Fret not if you don’t know Chinese for there are English subtitles that flashes above the stage for you to know the flow of the story.

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Shaolin Kung Fu Show Tickets at Beijing Red Theater

Duration: 1 hour 10 minutes

10 reviews

3. Take a tour of the Chang’An Avenue & Tiananmen Square (from USD 358.0)

Considered as the longest and the widest street in the world, Chang'An Avenue is a 12-lane road with an important history in China and the best way to see the famous Tiananmen Square and other governmental buildings. A busy road in the morning, complete your Beijing tour with a walk through history along this street and visit the Tiananmen Square before heading to the Forbidden City by night to see the plaza in a multi-colored wonderland. Do your assignment and have some research or watch the video about this place for no English translations there can help you understand its importance in Beijing’s history.

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Beijing Two Days Sightseeing Private Tour Include Top attractions of Beijing

Duration: 8 to 20 hours

4. Enjoy the Peking Opera at Mei Lanfang Grand Theater

Faces of Peking Opera
Source: Photo by user Nelo Hotsuma used under CC BY 2.0

A visit to China will never be complete without watching a Peking opera that showcases a colorful style of Chinese entertainment. Honoring China’s famous traditional opera star, Mei Lanfang Grand Theater is an impressive structure with a Chinese royal atmosphere. Get lost in time while watching a so-called national drama with performances of professional actors in colorful costumes who show their talent in singing, miming, and some acrobatics in the beat of musical instruments. Though famous for their Peking opera, Mei Lanfang Grand Theater also hosts other events, shows, and concerts so make sure to check their schedule before buying your ticket.

Mei Lanfang Grand Theater

Address: 32 Pinganlixi Street, Xicheng District, Beijing

Website: Mei Lanfang Grand Theater

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5. Grab a bite at Wangfujing Snack Street (from USD 82.0)

Mingle with locals in this bustling place with people looking for cheap yet authentic Chinese cuisines. Dare yourself ordering exotic street food such as scorpions on a stick, the tongue of an ox, and a backbone of a shark, name it and you’ll definitely find it here. If your stomach can’t take the latter, stick to the flavorful Chinese dishes like a pecking duck wrap, dumplings, and a spicy hot bowl of lamb tripe. Though the snacks are the highlight of this place, you can still enjoy shopping for great finds for there are a variety of other stores selling clothes, spices, electronics, and other stuff that may interest you.

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Beijing Nightlife with Wangfujing Market: Small-Group Tour

Duration: 4 hours

7 reviews

6. Enjoy buying stuff at Solana Lifestyle Shopping Park

2014.09.25.184750 Solana Lifestyle Shopping Park Maizidian Beijing
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Hermann Luyken used under CC0

If you have the means and is willing to give in shopping for signature items, Solana is a place for you. Housing more than a thousand international brands, retail shops, fancy restaurant, and lively bars, you will never run out of things to experience in this European inspired shopping park. Regular events are good for night hangouts and if you have kids traveling with you, they will surely enjoy the arcade games and the ice skating area inside the mall. After a day of a shopping spree, make your way to one of the restaurants along the lake with outdoor seating for a nice dinner overlooking the water.

Solana Lifestyle Shopping Park

Address: No. 6 Chaoyang Park Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing

Website: Solana Lifestyle Shopping Park

Opening hours: Daily (10 am - 10 pm)

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7. Attend a gig at 13 Club

Want to get rowdy and shake something on the floor while staying in Beijing? If you enjoy metal acts and a fan of guitar solos, a night at 13 Club will surely make your day by partying all night long with your friends. Enjoy a bottle of beer and spirit while jumping to your heart’s content in the loud music of punk rock, hip hop, and pop songs. Raise your hands up with fingers in the sign of horns as the artist of the day perform some of the underground music while your dancing to the beat with surrounding laser lights of the club.

13 Club

Address: 161 Chengfu Rd, Haidian Qu, Beijing

Website: 13 Club

Opening hours: Monday - Saturday (7:30 pm - 12:30 am)

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8. Pose for pictures in front of the Olympic Stadium

Beijing national stadium
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Peter23 used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Located in the center of Olympic Forest Park is the Beijing National Stadium and Beijing National Aquatics Center both played an important part in Olympic games. By night, tourist and locals alike flocked in this largest park in the city to admire the unique architecture of the “Bird’s Nest” and the “Water Cube” that are beautifully lit after dark. If you just had a feast in the nearby restaurants, this is a perfect place to walk and a chance to admire its impressive structure and to take some Instagram-worthy pictures. Don’t forget to drop by the Olympic Tower for it is also worth a visit when you’re in the park.

The Olympic Stadium

Address: 1 National Stadium S Rd, Chaoyang Qu, Beijing

Opening hours: Mar. 15 - Nov. 15 (6 am - 9 pm) | Nov. 16 - Mar. 14 (7 am - 7 pm)

Price: Free (Olympic Forest Park)

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9. Sip a drink at bars in the Houhai Bar Street

Bar nearby Beijing Houhai lake - panoramio
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user fading used under CC BY-SA 3.0

A well-known place for locals and tourists alike, this area near Houhai Lake offers an active and exciting nightlife with its many bars, cafes, and restaurants. A popular place to drink with delish food and live music, Houhai Bar Street has become a trendy hangout spot where you can enjoy singing in a karaoke bar or enjoy a long chat with friends at a teahouse. With over 120 bars and restaurants lined up on this street, you will never run out of food and drink options from morning breakfast up to late dinner and midnight snack. Make sure to visit it after sunset for the street is worth exploring at night during your stopover in Beijing.

Houhai Bar Street

Address: Di'anmen West Main Street, Xicheng District, Beijing

Opening Hours: Daily (24 hours)

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10. Stroll along the alleys of Houhai Lake

Source: Photo by user Cyrene Domogalla used under CC BY 2.0

Take a leisurely walk by the lake along the alleys of Houhai while indulging in the beautiful and peaceful scenery whether in the morning or night. Discover each hutongs (alleyways) and experience the authentic Beijing neighborhood while having some Instagram-worthy shots of traditional Chinese courtyard residences which originates since the Yuan dynasty. Catch the colorful reflection of lights from surrounding bars in Houhai Lake while breathing in the cold night breeze or just watch the people moving around this popular attraction. If a night stroll is a tiring thing for you, taking a boat ride on the lake is also possible so don’t miss the chance to try it too.

Houhai Lake

Address: Xicheng District, Beijing

Opening Hours: Daily (24 hours)

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Best way to discover and experience the nightlife in Beijing

From its traditions, culture and historical architecture that are very visible in the morning to its neon lights and romantic night sceneries by night, it is no doubt that China is a country that can capture the heart of any visitor from foreign lands. Unleash the inner nocturnal in you and experience the nightlife that Beijing can offer during your stay. Prepare some basic Chinese words and try to communicate with the locals while doing one (if not all) of the top things to do in Beijing at night.

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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