Yonghegong Lama Temple 雍和宫
Yonghegong Lama Temple is the area’s eponymous Buddhist temple. Originally built as a residence for imperial eunuchs, the site was made into a lamasery in 1772. The temple boasts a distinct blend of Tibetan and Han Chinese architectural elements. Bring your camera and snap away at a 26m statue of the Maitreya Buddha carved from a single piece of white sandalwood, which once made it into the Guinness Book of Records.
RMB 25, RMB 12 (students). Daily 9am-4.30pm. 12 Yonghegong Dajie, Dongcheng District (6404 4499, firstname.lastname@example.org) www.yonghegong.cn 东城区雍和宫大街12号
Wudaoying Hutong 五道营胡同
Located just west of Yonghegong Lama Temple, Wudaoying Hutong is a gentrified stretch with lots of shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants. Restaurants include brunch stalwart Vineyard Cafe, Tex-Mex joint Sand Pebbles Lounge, vegan haven The Veggie Table, Greek go-to Argo, and newcomer Stuff’d (formerly known as The Vineleaf). Shops worth checking out include Delia (a vintage store with lots of leather goods) and Brandnü, a charity shop that collects donations to resell or recycle. All profits support the Rural Women Organization. Near the eastern end of the hutong, Natooke is a fixed-gear bicycle shop that carries Respro pollution masks and other bike accessories. If you dare, rent one of the shop’s fixies for a day (RMB 50, RMB 500 deposit required) and tour the area in style.
Daily 11.30am-11pm. 59 Wudaoying Hutong (100m west of Vineyard Cafe), Dongcheng District (8403 9748) 东城区五道营胡同59号
Tue-Sun 10am-10pm. 61 Wudaoying Hutong (just west of Vineyard Cafe), Dongcheng District (150 1115 3421) 东城区东城区五道营胡同61号
Daily 2.30-10pm. 54 Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng District (6401 9369) 东城区东城区五道营胡同54号
Daily 10am-7pm. 19-1 Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng District (8402 6925, email@example.com) www.natooke.com 东城区东城区五道营胡同甲19-1号
Sand Pebbles Lounge 沙卵石
Daily noon-11pm. 74 Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng District (8404 0767) 东城区五道营胡同74号
Wed-Mon 11.30am-2.45pm, 6-10pm. 9 Jianchang Hutong, Dongcheng District (6407 6308) 东城区箭厂胡同9号
The Veggie Table 吃素的
Wed-Mon 11am-11pm. 19 Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng District (6446 2073) 东城区五道营胡同19号
Vineyard Cafe 葡萄院儿
Tue-Sun 11.30am-11.30pm. 31 Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng District (6402 7961, firstname.lastname@example.org) www.vineyardcafe.cn 东城区五道营胡同31号
Confucius Temple and Imperial College 孔庙和国子监博物馆
Just off Yongegong Dajie on Guozijian Jie, you’ll find Confucius Temple and the adjoining Imperial College. The Imperial College was the highest educational institution in imperial China, while Confucius Temple was where emperors and court officials paid respect to Confucius (or Kongzi). This one’s for history buffs and enthusiasts of traditional
culture, who can even sign up for calligraphy, painting, weiqi, and ancient literature classes at the school located behind the Imperial College’s Biyong Hall (Chinese proficiency required).
RMB 30, RMB 15 (kids and seniors). Daily 8.30am-5pm (Nov 1-Apr 30), daily 8.30am-6pm (May 1-Oct 31). 13 Guozijian Jie, Dongcheng District (8402 7224, 8401 1977) www.kmgzj.com 东城区国子监街13号
Fangjia Hutong 方家胡同
South of Guozijian Jie, Fangjia Hutong is another hutong worth checking out. Called Fangjia 46, this complex houses Yunnanese and southwest Chinese restaurants Trainspotting and Aimo Town, as well as the Red Theater, which hosts dance performances, exhibitions, shadow puppetry, workshops, and more. The same block is also home to the Beijing Cultural Heritage Protection Center (CPA), where visitors can find out more about the NGO’s mission to preserve cultural heritage and architecture.
At the other end of the hutong, El Nido Bistro – El Nido bar’s spinoff restaurant – offers a limited menu of salads, sandwiches and pizza. Though craft shops Paper Talk and Samantha Crafts are sadly closing their doors, Zian Print and Graphics continues to sell original and limited edition prints from China and Europe.
46 Fangjia Hutong Theater (Red Theater)
46 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng District (8422 8728) 东城区方家胡同46号
Beijing Cultural Heritage Protection Center (CPA) 北京文化遗产保护中心
Rm 309, Bldg E, 46 Fangjia Hutong (just south of Guozijian Jie), Dongcheng District (6403 6532, 6403 6632 (fax)) www.bjchp.org
Aimo Town 埃蒙小镇
Daily 11am-10pm. Bldg G, 46 Fangjia Hutong (just south of Guozijian Jie), Dongcheng District (6400 1725) 东城区方家胡同46号艺术园区
El Nido Bistro
Daily Noon-2am. 64 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng District, Dongcheng District (8403 5004) 东城区东城区方家胡同64号
Daily 11am-11pm. 46 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng District (6406 0658) 东城区方家胡同46号艺术园区 (国子监南临)
Zian Print and Graphics 子安方家胡同店
Tue-Sun, 2.30-8.30pm. 30 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng District. (131 4649 3917, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org) 东城区东城区方家胡同30号
Photo by Sophie Zhu
This article originally appeared on p54-55 of the beijingkids June 2013 issue.
Check out the PDF version online at Issuu.com