Back Lakes (Hou Hai)

Attraction Shicha Lake Scenic Resort, Xicheng District, Beijing 100009, China Published on: 03-08-2016

1 hours 30 mins
09:00 AM
10:30 AM
First-time visit
0.00 USD

Back Lakes (Hou Hai) is good for

Good for family with kids Family with kids Good
Good for senior Senior Good
Good for couple Couple Good
Good for solo Solo Good
Good for group Group Good
  • Highly recommended by fellow travellers.
Houhai (Chinese: 后海; pinyin: hòuhǎi; literally "Rear Sea") refers to a lake and its surrounding neighborhood in Xicheng District of central Beijing.

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Why Back Lakes (Hou Hai) is special ?

The Back Lakes area is close to downtown, green, a bit funky, has a great hutong, and is quiet. And, perhaps in an odd twist of fortune, the Back Lakes area is with one exception a bit of a walk from the nearest subway stop.

The Back Lakes area consists of three lakes--Xi Hai (西海), Hou Hai (后海), Qian Hai (前海)--that are strung together north of Bei Hai (北海), which is a large lake south of Dian Men Xi Daijie street. A highlight is Silver Ingot Bridge - a marble bridge built in the 1980's, that joins Qian Hai Lake and Hou Hai Lake.


What to explore at Back Lakes (Hou Hai)?

The Back Lakes (Hou Hai) is one of the last remaining places in Beijing where you can see traditional courtyard-style houses.

While wandering the hutongs lets you see Beijing as it once was, the streets surrounding the lakes, particularly Hou Hai -- the largest of the three -- shows you a modern, hip and international side of Beijing. The banks are lined with cafes, restaurants, bars and hookah dens catering to tourists, locals and the city’s sizable expatriate population alike.

The best way to enjoy the Back Lakes area is to take a pedicab tour of the old hutong neighborhoods in the afternoon. Afterward, take a leisurely walk around the lake before settling in to a table at a restaurant or bar balcony for dinner and drinks as you watch the world go by.


Selling points

  • “Great for a drink with friends”
  • “Surprising atmosphere”
  • “Lights at Night. ”
  • “A very charming place for a drink”
  • “Iceskating on the lake”
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4.0 days
143.03 USD
Total travel distance
Number of places
12 places




Shicha Lake Scenic Resort, Xicheng District, Beijing 100009, China

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Tips for you

  • If you are going to take a trishaw ride, do it here.
  • It is full of bars, pubs and locals with live shows
    Things to do
  • In the winter, you can try ice chair skate on the lake.
    Things to do
  • There are lots of places for you to buy snack and drink and most not too expensive
  • It's a great drinking place of young people
  • It's best to visit at night
  • This area is full of interesting shops and a lot of food stalls.


TripAdvisor View more

Great place to visit, particularly late afternoon into evening. Tkae time to rent a paddle boat on the lakes, stroll through the back streets, or pay the fare for a rickshaw ride.

TripAdvisor View more

Enjoyed a pleasant walk around the lake and adjacent laneways one morning. There is plenty of activity but it wasn't too busy although I understand it gets very crowded and busy at night. There were people fishing in the alke andI wondered what they were hoping to catch. A lovely place to relax and take in your environs.

TripAdvisor View more

This is a great place for a night out. There are so many bars and restaurants to choose from. Most of them play live music and have comfortable couches outside. It's a great place to watch the world go by. We also went during the day and really enjoyed walking around the lakes. You can get a pedalo or a boat ride on the lake too.

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