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Visiting the vibrant 798 Art District in the north of Beijing is a great way to add another layer of local life to the city. Wandering through the Imperial Palaces and the vast Tiananmen Square will doubtlessly provide an in-depth perspective on China's Dynastic and Communist past, but it only tells part of the story.

Along with the city's temples to Buddhism, Taoism and Confucius, the 798 Art Zone shows how the city is evolving today, with a creative spirit more akin to Shoreditch in London or Brooklyn in New York. Housed in one of the former factories so typical of Communist China, the area is a bastion of creative energy and expression, with countless art galleries and exhibitions and eye-catching public art. People have gathered here from across the globe to join the movement.

The 798 Art Zone could be easily combined with the Summer Palace or the Olympic Park, both in the north of the city and also on the way to the airport if you have an afternoon or evening flight. 

Some of our favourite places to visit and things to do in Beijing
What to do in Beijing

Special in-depth Beijing tour

Gain an in-depth perspective on Beijing's past and present with our specially designed tour of the capital.

Three temples tour

Visit three beautiful temples to learn how Buddhism, Confucianism and Taoism remain relevant today.

Hutongs: Behind the Scenes

Traverse the alleyways of a traditional hutong to gain an insight into life here and partake in cultural activities.