What’s a hutong anyway?

A hutong is a series of interconnecting streets and alleyways. It originated from the word “hottong,” which means well. In the past, people would dig a well and build their houses around it. Today, the hutongs are still filled with families and old  men playing Mahjong on make shift tables in dusty corridors. Along with the old traditional feel, the foreigners are creating their own scene. Live houses, niche bars and cocktail lounges line the streets welcoming in the foreigners with Beatles and Bob Marley cover bands, beer events and movie nights. Local breweries and bottle shops are popping up everywhere, and the eclectic mix of old  and new leaves you wondering, what’s just past the next alley, and the next one. The labyrinth can go on for what seems like forever. This place just feels right. Journey with me through my exploration of the hutongs of Beijing, and all the other wonderful things China has to offer.