Beijing has long been a city of royalty, and you can dine like a royal at these historic sites and exquisite restaurants around the city.
Diaoyutai State Guesthouse
Dining here is akin to having dinner at the US White House Mess Hall—this historic hotel complex has hosted more than 1,200 government dignitaries and heads of state, including Richard Nixon, Henry Kissinger, Margaret Thatcher, and Michelle Obama. A once-in-a-lifetime, six-course dinner experience at the guesthouse takes place in a luxurious restaurant specializing in traditional Chinese cuisine.
Badaling Great Wall
Many travelers to Beijing have seen the Great Wall, but far fewer have dined there. A watchtower at the Badaling section of the Great Wall sets the stage for an unforgettable formal sit-down lunch. Diners have the opportunity to restore a portion of the wild wall by adding a brick and see an area of the wall rarely visited by tourists.
Chinese Royal Gastronomy Museum
Opened in 2010, the Chinese Royal Gastronomy Museum celebrates dynastic dining. The museum's food court serves more than 3,000 traditional snacks from all over China, while the exhibits cover everything from classic recipes to cooking artifacts. Foodies interested in learning about China's long culinary history can get their taste buds involved by sitting down for an imperial banquet dinner inside the museum.
Bai Jia Da Yuan Restaurant
Beijing's famous Bai Jia Da Yuan restaurant occupies the 300-year-old grounds of a former Qing Dynasty palace spread across 124 acres (50 hectares) of gardens, pavilions, terraces, and corridors. The restaurant and cultural heritage site specializes in imperial cuisine, served by fully costumed staff who look like they've just stepped out of Imperial China.