Beijing's best bars for getting to know the city, meet the right people, and enjoy your stay in the capital

About 10Best's recommendations for Beijing's Best Bars:

10Best searched far and wide before ranking these bars as the best in Beijing. How'd they earn their way on the list? Beer selection, specialty cocktails, cool aesthetics, great music, hip crowds-- we consider it all before deciding which ones belong on a list of Beijing's Best Bars.

For a truly Beijing experience head to Hou Hai Lake, in central Beijing. This lake is surrounded in fun, cheap local bars and a few nice exceptions, like 15 Qianhai Beiyan. You'll be able to watch the sun set over the lake if you arrive early, or sit and watch the pedestrians stroll arm in arm under the moonlight and haze as the evening wanes.

Bed Bar and Centro are two of the more high end options in town, where you'll see some of the city's most dazzling people in their most amazing attire. Of course, this being Beijing the range of folks who frequent these high-end establishments can be vast. Slip into something sexy for Centro, and something nice but comfy for the lounges at Bed Bar and you'll fit right in.

Paddy O'Shea's, Drum and Bell and Poacher's Inn are all low-key backpacker bars where you'll find other travelers swapping stories of life on the road as they down cheap Tsingtao bottles and even a few bar nuts. Keep the conversations rolling as the warm beers are served late into the night.

For wine fanatics, Aria is one of the best in town, but Room 101 is another cellar option where you'll find they really know their vines.

Paddy O'Shea's


An authentic friendly Irish pub for aficionados of Guinness on tap and whiskey. Always seems to be lively. With its high ceiling and long bar with cozy stools, this is where many Beijing expats enjoy whiling away the evening. Also has pool and...  Read More

Aria Jazz and Wine Bar


A sophisticated jazz bar that serves up great champagne cocktails and offers a wide selection of fine imported wines. Set as a split-level restaurant and bar, this is an excellent choice for a quiet business meeting or a civilized night...  Read More

Xi Cheng District
No Name Bar


Known to locals and expats as Bai Feng's, this is certainly one of the city's most happening bars. The No Name Bar overlooks Lake Houhai and is elegantly outfitted with plants, funky decor and wicker furniture. Ideal spot for an evening cocktail...  Read More

Bar Blu


A popular hangout for the young and promiscuous. Dance, disco, pop and techno is the main diet here. Bar Blu frequently hosts theme nights, so you should call beforehand to check what's going on. Happy Hour 5 - 9 and Ladies Nights on Fridays and...  Read More

Drum and Bell Bar
Photo courtesy of Drum and Bell


As much a cozy cafe as a bar. Overlooking the courtyard between the Drum Tower and the Bell Tower, this rooftop bar is hidden down a hutong (alleyway). The Drum and Bell is difficult to find, but worth the search. Offers great views over this...  Read More

Room 101
Photo courtesy of Room 101


A very tasteful cellar bar with a refined and distinct French feeling. Room 101 offers good service and a fine selection of wines and liqueurs, as well as European draft beers. Despite the "open 24 hours" theme, the bar is often very quiet. A...  Read More

Poachers Inn
Photo courtesy of Poacher's Inn


A backpackers' bar that attracts lots of young expats, Poachers is an English-style pub with cheap drinks and a lively atmosphere. During weekends it gets very busy, and they like to crank up the music and take it into the wee hours. For...  Read More



A popular lounge bar that offers "VIP service" in a dimly-lit setting. Can be something of a pick-up bar, but its soothing live jazz and ambiant tunes make it a good option for a relaxing martini. This remains one of the city's more...  Read More

Bed Bar
Photo courtesy of Bed Bar


An ultra-chic New York-inspired cocktail bar with four poster beds, divans and big cushions to lie out on. Tucked down a lane and situated in an old courtyard house, Bed attracts a discerning clientele. Finger foods such as Spanish tapas are on...  Read More

15 Qianhai Beiyan


Set in a picturesque Chinese pavilion on Houhai Lake, this trendy bar adjoins the highly prestigious Xiao Wang's Home restaurant and offers lovely views over the lake. Ideal for sundowners and those on romantic dates looking for a nice place to...  Read More


Meet Lauren Johnson

Lauren has been living in Asia for the past five years. She holds a master's degree in Asian history. Lauren spends her free time reading, writing and traveling and visiting zoos in every city possible.