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Nan Luo Gu Xiang is one of Beijing’s oldest and most well preserved hutongs, with a history of more than 700 years. The alley stretches 800 meters north to south, a few miles north of the Forbidden City. While seeing the old-style buildings will make you feel like you are in old Beijing, the cafes, bars, and charming stores will show you what modern Beijing is all about. Now a central hub for Beijing bohemian life, this alley way and surrounding neighborhood has become one of the hippest neighborhoods in Beijing.
Built in the late 13th century, Nan Luo Gu Xiang was a flourishing commercial street during the Yuan Dynasty. It later became a center of political activity during the last two dynasties. In 2006, the Beijing government decided to protect Nan Luo Gu Xiang and give it a face lift. Since then, it has become famous for its bars, cafes, and culture.
In recent years, it has become a standard location for many fashion magazines, TV shows, and movies filming in Beijing. Most foreign visitors would agree it’s one of Beijing’s must-visit locations. Also a popular bar street, from local, low-key bars to hip European watering holes, the smallest bar in Beijing is even located here.
Aside from food and drink, there are many interesting crafts and clothing to buy in Nan
Luo Gu Xiang. Here you will find everything from fashionable, uniquely printed t-shirts to modern Chinese handicrafts to classic Tibetan crafts. Hipsters, musicians, artists and tourists all rub shoulders here.
Nan Luo Gu Xiang is the perfect blend of old and new, historical and culturally vibrant that makes Beijing such a unique and fascinating city.