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Beijing: Summary of Rewi Alley locations + Travel advice

Rewi Alley’s China > Beijing > Shanghai > Hubei province > Shaanxi provinceGansu province > Shandan > Lanzhou >

Rewi Alley locations:

  • Overview
    • Beijing Bailie University
    • Rewi Alley’s apartment in the Youxie compound, the old Italian legation, in Taijichang, where he spent his latter years in residence, but not generally open for visitors to visit.  Now the offices of Youxie.
    • Song Qingling mansion on Hou Hai (back lake), not far from the Drum Tower, is well worth a visit, as there are several photos of Rewi Alley and about GongHe in the biographical depiction of her life.


Beijing is well served by metro, inter-city trains, buses, and taxis.  These are easy to navigate even with no knowledge of Chinese.   Free wifi and cafes are easy to find. (There is even one called ‘Alley Cafe’!).


Beijing has many types of accommodation to suit all budget levels.

When to visit:

Beijing has a monsoon-influenced continental climate with hot, humid summers and cold, dry winters. The best time to visit is in September and October.  Spring is the season for dust storms and is otherwise warm and dry. Summer can be oppressively hot and the tourist crowds tend to be the largest as well; prevailing winds from the south trap pollutants (mountains lie to the north and west), making summer a poor season for air quality. Smog is at its worst, however, in winter, which is cold and dry with infrequent snow. Temperatures can fall below -10 °C (14°F) in winter, and rise above 35°C (95°F) in summer.

Current weather can be viewed on http://www.accuweather.com/en/cn/

As in all of China, it is preferable to avoid the peak holiday periods of Golden Week (1-7th October), Spring Festival/Chinese New Year (10days in January or February, exact date changes each year), and school holidays of July/August.  If you are travelling at these times, you’ll need to book transport in advance, and possibly be flexible with your dates to get to the places you want. 

Links to more information:


Rewi Alley’s China > Beijing > Shanghai > Hubei province > Shaanxi provinceGansu province > Shandan > Lanzhou >

This article is based on a report by Jane Furkert of her work: ‘An Independent Travellers’ Guide to Rewi Alley Locations in China, 2016’, that was funded by the Rewi Alley Friendship and Exchange (RAFE) Fund.