Hou Lake

Hou Lake, Beijing: Address, Phone Number, Hou Lake Reviews: 4.5/5


4.5
58 reviews
Excellent
28
Very good
23
Average
6
Poor
1
Terrible
0

Ramón
Vega Alta, Puerto Rico219 contributions
A very cool place to hang out on hot days
May 2019
Make sure to enjoy the views and visit the different bars and shops around the area. There are some boats to enjoy the lake in the water or you can take a bicycle tour also around it.
Written June 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Soxblue
Val Morin, Canada669 contributions
Night life along the lake will soon be gone
Jul 2018 • Family
Hou lake( 后海)also called Shishahai(什刹海) is the water system connecting with Beihai(北海)and Zhongnanhai(中南海)。

It’s a family fun place, boating in summer, skating in winter. But also a hang out place for youngsters. The bars and restaurants spread on both sides of the lake. The night life is more busier than day time.

I’ve told the city has a different plan for this area and all the bars will be gone after summer. Some already moved out. So if you want to experience this unusual side of Beijing, you better do it now.
Written July 10, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

hildeborg
Seattle, WA77 contributions
This is a slice of Beijing nightlife--go and enjoy
Apr 2018 • Friends
This is a strange place to describe. It's just one live music bar after another that all look remarkably similar. There are a handful of sit-down restaurants, some food vendors, and other treasures to discover in the alleys. Watch out for the scooters and rickshaws zipping along the narrow streets. Fun place to experience at night!
Written April 22, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

nellielim
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia4,110 contributions
Popular lake
Mar 2017 • Family
Houhai means rear lake and it is the biggest of the three lakes known collectively as Shichaihai. Ringed by restaurants, cafes and bars, it has a buzzling nightlife popular among the younger generation and expatriate crowd. In the daytime, boat and rickshaw rides can be taken around the lake and neighbouring hutongs.
Written March 28, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Laurie S
Denver, NC1,425 contributions
Wish we would have discovered it sooner!
May 2016 • Family
Our tour guide brought us to Hou Lake on our last day in Beijing, what a lovely area of shops and restaurants around a lake. We took a nice walk around the lake. There were lots of shops and restaurants, many places with outdoor patios to enjoy a drink, a meal and the view. There were people taking boat rides along the lake and rickshaw rides around the lake as well. I wish we would have discovered the area sooner, we would have returned for dinner one evening but we enjoyed walking around during the day!
Written September 1, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sergie Arruda
Manchester, UK227 contributions
Great place to enjoy the night
Jul 2016
The area is full of restaurants and bars nearby and it gets quite beautiful during the evening. Good choice for a relaxing night.
Written August 15, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Aaron
London, Canada431 contributions
Day and night
Jul 2016 • Family
Hou Hai (Shishahai) is a place of split personality.

During the day, it is now apparently a buzzing tourist attraction (more so than ten years ago), with lots of tours (mostly local) coming through, probably due to its being lumped in with the nearby siheyuan (四合院) attractions. You can, however, just sit outside, having some food and drinks, and watch the masses go past. The lake itself offers a good view and a nice setting.

At night, it is a heaving bar scene, with at least one restaurant hosting live bands and showcasing local talents.

Recommend going at different times, depending on what you are into.
Written August 12, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

866Paul
Washington DC, DC91 contributions
HouHai is a fun place at day or night
Mar 2016 • Solo
Houhai has many faces. The lake itself is a place that you would not expect in the center of a major city. It is a great photo opportunity in the daytime and takes on a different character at night time.
The district itself also has different personalities; day versus night and south versus north. The daytime personality in both south and north is very charming. I would recommend the north for pictures and it is a great place to catch a rickshaw tour of the Hutong area.
At night time the south has larger restaurants and better for families. At night time the north section comes alive with over 100 small bars and restaurants. Each competing with the loudest bands, best happy hours and food. Any adult tourist would love this place at night time. It is fun and exciting and loaded with people looking to have a good time.
Written March 7, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SOH KIEN PENG
Singapore, Singapore6,315 contributions
A lake of Serenity and tranquility tinted with westernized bars and cafes
Nov 2014 • Couples
We stayed near Andingmen, took the subway to Guloudajie station and toured the Bell and Drum Tower hutong neighborhood. We subsequently roamed around the Hutong neighborhoods and my wife became so infatuated with the traditional shops along Smoking Pipe Street that she `coerced' me to shop there for a second time on our last day trip in Beijing.

Well, I must admit that the atmosphere for shopping along this well-preserved traditional Qing dynasty shopping alley was uniquely relaxed. My wife was particularly fascinated with beautifully embroidered silk scarfs and spent time selecting her option.

I was not the sort of shopaholic. While she pursued her interest slowly browsing her items, I went around the Sichaihai area comprising the 3 lakes: Qianhai, Xihai and Houhai (Hou Lake) for sightseeing. Through my many days in Beijing, I found that it was extremely safe for anyone including female to wander around alone in broad daylight.

I visited the Temple of the Fire God near the Qianhai lake and the Lotus Flower market before walking across to the Hou Lake area. The northern part of the Hou Lake was crowded with bars, cafes, restaurants and shops and very commercialized with Caucasians seen drinking beer and relaxing in the bars and cafes while westernized rock music blasted in the air. This hutong neighborhood is particularly attractive to the younger local generations and the expatriate community in Beijing.

I strolled around the Hou Lake and visited two unique attractions: the former residence of Song Ching Ling and Prince Gong Mansion. Song Ching Ling married Dr Sun Yat Sen and was remembered as the Mother of Modern China. She died in 1981 when the modernization programs under Deng Xiao Peng had just embarked in the southern provinces. She is one of those revolutionary martyrs who abandoned wealth and luxury in search of a socialist China that brings prosperity and happiness to her people. Prince Gong Mansion was one of the most exquisite and well preserved imperial mansion in Beijing.

The water in the Hou Lake came from the Kunming Lake in the Summer Palace and both attractions share an atmosphere of serenity and tranquility. While the northern area may be crowded and noisy with bars, cafes and western music, the rest of the lake area is quiet, calm and serene and it is very suitable for an evening stroll. If you tired, you can rent a trishaw for RMB 20 to ride you around the lake.

By the time I finished my stroll around the lake, my wife had also completed her souvenir shopping task and we happily proceeded to one of the eateries at Hou Lake area to have our sumptuous dinner.

Do drop by to appreciate the beauty of the Sichaihai lakes while you are in Beijing - be it for souvenir shopping or for a jug of beer.
Written October 7, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Mark0313
The Villages, FL136 contributions
GREAT EVENING SPOT in BEIJING
Oct 2014
Great place to spend an evening. Nice restaurants, spectacular setting. Even a Starbucks for those in withdrawal.
Written September 1, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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