Beijing's restaurants have something for every taste, from bustling local dumpling houses to genteel world class restaurants. Try one of the Beijing duck restaurants close to the Forbidden City. Or join Beijing's well-heeled locals for dim sum in one of the Financial District's smart hotel restaurants. As the sun goes down, head to the traditional alleyways of Nanluoguxiang for Beijing's funkiest bars, or to Sanlitun for a classic Beijing bar crawl.
Head to Dongcheng to eat Beijing duck in classic imperial-style restaurants or try jiaozi (steamed dumplings) from street vendors. Sanlitun is home to many of Beijing's international restaurants and you'll find everything from tapas to sushi and Thai, as well as some good Chinese restaurants. For alfresco dining on a Beijing summer night, try the cosy restaurants around Houhai Lake, which serve dishes from across China.
One tip for Beijing's restaurants is that no one tips. If you do, it probably won't go to your waiter, so it's best not to bother. Vegetarians should beware as many vegetable dishes in Beijing's Chinese restaurants come with meat sauces or shredded meat. The best way to be sure is to tell a white lie say you're Buddhist and can't eat any form of meat.
Explore the area around Houhai Lake and the Drum and Bell Towers, home to some of Beijing's most laid-back bars, with Tibetan live music bars nestled next to French wine bars. The Haidian university district is a bit far from the centre but worth it to see Beijing's best local bands. Join Beijing's young and beautiful at glamorous bars dotted around Chaoyang Park's west gate it's the place be seen and party. End the night in Sanlitun, Beijing's bar centre.