Plenty of choices on bars, cafés and boutiques in the small lanes. More than 700 years old, Nanluoguxiang is one of the few protected areas of the old city. It has gentrified beautifully, with hundreds of bars, cafés and boutiques run by young, creative types.

Measuring 786 meters long but just eight meters wide, the street snakes through the neighborhood at the north end of the Forbidden City.
Myriad ever-smaller laneways connect from Nanluoguxiang, leading to hidden, fun things to do and see.
You can get an imperial-style yogurt at Wenyu Nailaodian or pints at Great Leap Brewing microbrewery. Turn down Gulou Dongdajie at the north end of the street and you’ll find Zarah Café and perfect espresso.