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Right at the subway exit I was warmly welcomed by my guide Doris and given a cold beer right there on the spot! Doris was so wonderful and bubbly and full of fun! While we waited for everyone to arrive Doris got us all introduced and chatting with each other and I made fast friends with everyone in the group (which was especially great as a shy, solo traveller!). The night was then spent zooming around on Tuk Tuks through different Hutong (maybe not for the faint of heart), which was one of the most fun, exhilarating ways I have ever travelled! Cold beers were unlimited and always on offer from Doris and we talked and laughed our way around glowing nighttime Beijing. The 4 food stops provided plenty of food and I was stuffed by the end. It was honestly some of the best food I've ever had- all fresh, high quality and handmade. We sampled several very different types of local cuisine and it was so cool to be in the little places and learn about the people and the neighborhoods from Doris. Not only was there absolutely no way I could have found these often unmarked home-like little places on my own, I doubt most native Beijingers would know about them unless they lived in that neighborhood. I also wouldn't have been able to communicate and order without Doris there as I don't speak Mandarin and there was no English spoken by the families. Several of my group ended up staying late together at the last stop brewery, chatting, sharing stories and having fun before sharing cabs back to our hostels and hotels (with help from Doris). All in all this was the absolute highlight of my entire trip and I cannot recommend it enough! You cannot miss this tour if you love food, local culture and making friends and want to get a great feel for the city and some great recommendations. I was a bit nervous about being a solo traveller but this tour got me feeling comfortable and confident and set the stage for a great trip!
Hello Addie, we are super touched by your review and Doris would be so proud to see this! We are extremely glad that you had a fabulous evening, zipping through the hutong on our tuktuk and exploring Beijing with a group of strangers turned friends. Armed with plenty of beer and a variety of awesome local dishes freshly prepared by the owners of these family-run restaurants, it can be nothing less than the highlight of your entire trip right? ;) We are so happy that you enjoyed yourself thoroughly and we certainly can't thank you enough for putting such a strong recommendation for us!