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Home Travel in Beijing Lao She Teahouse
Lao She Teahouse
Travel in Beijing


The Lao She Teahouse (lǎo shě chá guǎn 老舍茶馆), located in the heart of Beijing, offers tourists a big helping of Chinese culture in easily digestible, bite-size pieces. The teahouse, established in 1988, is named after "The Teahouse," a play by the famous novelist and dramatist Lao She. Despite being called a teahouse, this place is definitely not about sitting down in a refined manner and sipping tea in a serene setting. Quite the contrary. The nightly shows at the Lao She Teahouse are a potpourri of the most colorful and flamboyant pearls of the Chinese culture, including acrobatics, music, magic, as well as quintessentially Chinese Beijing opera and kung fu.

altLao She was a notable Chinese writer. A novelist and dramatist, he was one of the most significant figures of 20th century Chinese literature, and is perhaps best known for his novel Camel Xiangzi or Rickshaw Boy (luò tuo xiáng zǐ 骆驼祥子)and the play Teahouse (chá guǎn 茶馆). He was of Manchu ethnicity.His original name was Shū Qìngchūn (舒庆春). He was born in Beijing, to a poor family of the Sūmuru clan belonging to the Red Banner.Like thousands of other intellectuals in China, he experienced mistreatment in the Cultural Revolution of the mid-1960s. Red Guards of the Cultural Revolution had attacked him as a counterrevolutionary. They paraded him through the streets and beat him in public. Greatly humiliated both mentally and physically, he committed suicide by drowning himself in a Beijing lake in 1966. His relatives were accused of implication in his "crimes" but continued to rescue his manuscripts after his death, hiding them in coal piles and a chimney and moving them from house to house.He was married to Hu Jieqing and they had four children, one son and three daughters.

 Beijing opera (京剧)


The audience can enjoy a variety of local snacks and as many cups of tea as they can muster throughout the show, while seated comfortably around tables accommodating about six people. The hall, furnished in the late Qing dynasty style, is decorated with beautiful Chinese lanterns, paintings and calligraphy works, which make for a warm and cozy atmosphere. The snacks on offer include delicious candied hawthorn berries, melon seeds, bean cakes (wān dòu huáng 豌豆黄) and glutinous rice balls with sweet bean paste filling (lǘ dǎ gǔn 驴打滚), among others. About halfway through the show, a bowlful of sweet hawthorn berry soup is also served. Other food and beverages can be ordered from a menu for a separate charge.


Candle song
One of the most eccentric acts has to be the "candle song" performed by two women holding small metal racks with two burning candles on top in their mouths. In addition, the Beijing opera face-changing act and the traditional long-spout tea pouring routine are sure to draw gasps and excited cheers from the crowd.


                                      (Click above picture to view the map)

The warm atmosphere in the teahouse makes the show even more enjoyable. The teahouse is conveniently located in the busy shopping area to the west of the Qianmen Gate Arrow Tower (jiànlóu 箭楼), on the southern edge of Tian'anmen Square (tiān ān mén guǎng chǎng 天安门广场). Tickets to the show cost from 40 yuan upwards, depending on your selected menu and how far you are seated from the stage. If you go there on a group visit arranged by a travel agency, different prices will apply.

Travel information

Address                 No.3, Qianmen West Street, Xuanwu District, Beijing

Phone                   010-63036830

Public Transport   Take bus routes 5, 10, 110, 120 and take off at Qianmen stop, or take 
                             subway Line 2 and take off at Qianmen station.


Opening Hours      11:30—21:30, Shows start at 14.30 and 19.30 (subject to change)

Tickets                  from 40 yuan