Zhongguancun is northwest of Beijing city centre. It’s part of strip of high-tech real estate between the third and fourth ring roads that is often referred to as China’s Silicon Valley. In fact, before Google pulled out of Mainland China and moved to Hong Kong, their Chinese headquarters were in this district.
Within Zhongguancun is Hai Dian District, famous for its universities. In all, there are ten centers of higher education in less than a seven-kilometer radius. Major contenders are China University of Mining and Technology, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing Forestry University and China Farmer University. With so many universities in the area, much of the accommodation in Zhongguancun caters especially for students and visiting families.
Running in front of the China University of Geosciences is Chengfui Road, with its collection of electronics shops. Between the high-tech startups and local universities, there is a high demand for computers, mobile phones and gadgets, and tourists can bargain their way through the bazaars of Hailong, Guigu, Dinghao, Kemao and Taipingyang markets.
Tourists who want to go shopping but would rather not be based here can get in through Dazhongsi Subway Station, which is the southeast of the district near Beijing Administration for Industry and Commerce. But for tourists who do book a room in one of the hotels in Zhongguancun, there are a few notable sites. The most famous attraction here is the Summer Palace, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the old palace’s ruins.