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For general information, including advice on tours, insurance, and safety, call, or visit China National Tourist Office's website, as well as the website run by the Beijing Tourism Administration (BTA). The BTA maintains a 24-hour hotline for tourist inquiries and complaints, with operators fluent in English. BTA also runs Beijing Tourist Information Centers, whose staff can help you with free maps and directions in Beijing.

The two best-known Chinese travel agencies are China International Travel Service (CITS) and China Travel Service (CTS), both under the same government ministry. Although they have some tourist information, they are businesses, so don't expect endless resources if you're not booking through them.

Tourist Information

Beijing Tourism Administration (010/8353–1111. . english.visitbeijing.com.cn.)

Beijing Travel Hotline (010/12301. english.visitbeijing.com.cn.)

BTG International Travel and Tours (Beijing Tourism Building, 28 Jianguomenwai Dajie, Chaoyang, Beijing, Beijing, 100022. 400–010–0808. www.btgtravel.com.cn.)

China International Travel Service (010/6522–2991 in China; 626/568–8993 in the U.S. www.cits.net.)

China Travel Service (400/811-6666 in China; 800/899–8618 in the U.S. www.ctsho.com.)

Online Travel Tools

All About Beijing

Beijing Expat. Beijing Expat has pages and pages of advice and listings from foreigners living in Beijing. beijing.asiaxpat.com.

Beijing International. This is a comprehensive, if slightly dry, guide to the city. www.ebeijing.gov.cn.

China Digital Times. This excellent Berkeley-run site tracks China-related news and culture. www.chinadigitaltimes.net.

Business

Caixin. This is the English-language website for the popular business and economic publication. english.caixin.com.

China Daily. This popular newspaper's website has a large business section. www.chinadaily.com.cn.

Global Times. The best of the local newspapers has lots of business coverage. www.globaltimes.cn.

Culture and Entertainment

The Beijinger. A weekly newsletter lets you know what's going on in the city. www.thebeijinger.com.

Chinese Culture. This detailed database has information on Chinese art, literature, film, and history. www.chinaculture.org.

Smart Beijing. This website has extensive listings, reviews, and offbeat articles on life in the city. www.smartbeijing.com.

Time Out Beijing. The popular magazine provides a great overview of all the major cultural events in the city. www.timeoutbeijing.com.