Beijing - Around Town : Tian'an Men Square and the Forbidden City (part 2) - A Day Around Tian'an Men Square and Wangfujing Dajie

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A Day Around Tian’an Men Square and Wangfujing Dajie


Arrive early to beat the crowds at Mao’s Mausoleum and shuffle through for the permitted few minutes in the presence of the Great Helmsman. The Forbidden City can be saved for another day, but climb the Tian’an Men for the views from the gallery. From the gate walk east along the Imperial City wall soon arriving at an entrance overlooked by most visitors: this leads to the Imperial Ancestral Temple, once one of the city’s most important places of worship. Carry on east; after the junction with Nan Chizi cutting back inside the wall to walk through pleasant Changpu He Park. One (long) block beyond the park is Wangfujing Dajie and the Oriental Plaza mall, with a superb food court in the basement.


Wander up Wangfujing Dajie, making sure to look in the chopstick and tea shops. At No. 74 is the attractive St. Joseph’s Church, which is well worth a look. Immediately before the church is a crossroads: head away from the church along Deng Shi Kou Jie looking for signs for Fengfu Hutong on your right. Here is the Former Residence of Writer Lao She, offering a glimpse into a way of life fast disappearing in Beijing. Retrace your steps down Wangfujing to Dong’an Men Dajie where the famous Night Market should by now be set up.

Shops, Malls, and Markets

  1. Oriental Plaza

    Several floors of big-name international high-end retailers, from Apple and Sony to Armani and Paul Smith. Don’t expect any bargains.

    • 1 Dong Chang’an Jie

    Oriental Plaza
  2. Foreign Languages Bookstore

    Most of the ground floor here is devoted to English-language fiction and non-fiction works. Staff are reliably surly.

    • 235 Wangfujing Dajie

    Foreign Languages Bookstore
  3. Ten Fu’s Tea

    Tea from all over China, sold loose or in beautiful presentation boxes. Staff will even brew small cups for sampling.

    Ten Fu’s Tea
  4. APM

    This shopping mall full of mid-range clothes shops also has a multiscreen cinema and lots of restaurants up on the top floor.

    • 138 Wangfujing Dajie

  5. Beijing Arts & Crafts Central Store

    A vast, multi-story emporium of all kinds of Chinese handicrafts, from cloisonné vases and jade, to wood-carvings, lacquer ware, and silks.

    • 200 Wangfujing Dajie

  6. Mao’s Mausoleum

    The mausoleum gift shop is the best source of Mao badges, posters, and shoulder bags.

    • Tian’an Men Square

    • Subway: Qian Men

    • Open 8:30–11:30am Mon–Sat, 2–4pm Mon, Wed & Fri

  7. Hong Cao Wan’r

    An upmarket ladies’ clothing boutique , Hong Cao Wan’r specializes in designer oriental items in natural fabrics.

    • 28 Wangfujing Dajie

    • Subway: Dengshikou

  8. Intime Lotte

    This new high-end mall sells many Korean brands, which is not surprising, since it is jointly owned by the Korean department giant Lotte and the Chinese Intime group. Cultural events and exhibitions are also held here.

    • 88 Wangfujing Dajie

  9. Jun Yi Home

    Chinese military surplus store with badges, patches, and even uniforms.

    • 383 Dong Si Bei Dajie

    • Subway: Dong Si

  10. Hao Yuan Market

    Small street market just off Wangfujing, which is crammed with stalls selling all kinds of knick-knacks, handicrafts, and curios.

    • Off Wangfujing Dajie


Most shops, markets, and malls tend to be open approximately 9am–9pm daily.

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