Běijīng isn't a hive of sporting activity, although you'll find swimming pools, gyms, golf courses and the usual classes – aerobics, martial arts, yoga – here. But the capital makes a fine launching pad for hikes into the countryside, while biking is the best way to experience the hútòng neighbourhoods. Football (soccer) and basketball are the two most popular spectator sports.

Need to Know

Golf

There are any number of golf courses in and around Běijīng, although green fees for nonmembers are often more expensive than if you buy a basic set of clubs at one of the capital's many golf outlets.

Ice Skating

Come winter and every expanse of water in Běijīng freezes over, allowing both locals and visitors to strap on their ice skates. The most popular place to ice skate are the lakes of Hòuhǎi, where vendors await to rent you a set of skates and any other gear you might need.

Massage

Běijīng is a fine place to get a massage to ease aching muscles, or just to unwind. All sorts of treatments are available, from a simple foot massage to day-long pampering in a posh spa.

Tickets

You can normally buy tickets for both Běijīng Guo'an and Běijīng Ducks games on the day of the match, at the Workers Stadium and the Wǔkēsōng Arena respectively. Scalpers are another option on the rare occasions the games are sold out: they will find you as soon as you are in the vicinity of the stadiums.