I have 5 hours between daytime flights in Beijing Capital airport (terminal 3), and my challenge is to walk out of the airport to eat a bowl of soup at any small local restaurant outside the airport.

The airport seems to be surrounded by semi-urban areas, so finding some food is probably possible:

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The main difficulty will probably be to find a walkable way out. How to achieve that?

Google Maps shows walking directions, but it makes me walk on roads without sidewalks such as this one, so I think it can not be trusted in this area:

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  • FYI, hot pot is not soup (it's a meal similar to fondue/shabu shabu), if your intention is to get some soup there :-) – xuq01 May 7 at 8:04

I just tried. It is surprisingly easy, and I would totally recommend it even if you have only 4 hours between flights.

I will suppose that like almost everyone coming from an international flight you are at Terminal 3. From the arrivals, go down to the ground floor, where the local buses are, and walk to the right:

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After the last bus stop there is still a sidewalk, keep walking. Fortunately this road not too busy as most vehicles use a different, larger road. Sometimes there is an entrance going to the right with a security guard, just ignore it and keep walking. The security guards are here to prevent you from entering the VIP parking areas on the right, they are not here to prevent people from using the sidewalk:

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Continuing on the same sidewalk, on your right you will see a motorcycles parking, then a park with a lake. After the lake, turn right (leaving Yijing Road and entering Erwei Road):

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Continue on this road until the next crossroad:

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On the left side of the picture above, you can see a few parked scooters, they are delivery scooters parked in front of 美食城. Cross the road and enter 美食城, it is a food court with 20 small restaurants providing all sorts of local foods (soup, noodles, dumplings, drinks, etc), at a third the price of any restaurant you can find in the airport:

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If this foodcourt is not to your taste, there are a lot of other restaurant in that same street and in the backstreets of that area.


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(do not mind Google Maps' wrongful paths and line names on the map above, I just use it for the satellite image)


I suspect you can't. PEK is surrounded by suburban/semi-urban areas, but the immediate surroundings of the airport terminals are runways, fields, and other large open expanses. The only ways out are the connecting roads (and subway), which do not have sidewalks.

You can try walking on the connecting roads and leave before you enter the Airport Highway, but it will be very dangerous due to these roads not having sidewalks (and only worsened by Beijing drivers' poor driving habits), and vehicles typically drive very fast. If you would rather not risk your life, I suggest saving that 10 RMB and hailing a taxi :-)

BTW, due to Chinese governmental regulations, Google Maps is very inaccurate in mainland China. You'd have to use a Chinese map application, like Baidu. But even Baidu suggests you to walk on roads without sidewalks, so I guess there's no safe way to walk out.

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