Where to go for a drink

When we first arrived in Wuhan we were trying to figure out where foreigners go for a drink. Of course, there are heaps of bars & cafes around –but sometimes, after a week or two of no western contact –you feel like meeting people with whom you can have an actual conversation! So where do foreign people go for a drink these days?

Brussels Beer Garden, Hankou. This is a cosy narrow “bar–bistro-café-pub” with a lake view garden terrace – run by a Belgium called David. David is also one of the founders of the Aids charity which WOW supports 🙂 Located beside the North-West lake in Hankou it’s within walking distance from Novotel, Jin Jiang International and a short taxi ride from the Shangri-La, New-World, Ramada (Hankou) & Azia Hotels. It has a regular loyal expat following and is renown for it’s range of beers and relaxed atmosphere.This is a good place where the mature adult/ couple/group wanting a quiet drink, some bar food and maybe a chat, can chill. Probably the closest thing to “your local” you’ll get in Hankou. http://www.brusselsbg.com/
Address: Hankou, XiBeiHu Lu 8-8, Wan Hao Guo Ji
Say: ” Hankou, Xibeihu Lu, Buluseer Pijiuleyuan”
Show: 布鲁塞尔啤洒乐园-汉口西北湖路8附8号

Javair, Hankou. This is a mellow hangout – nestled on a side street right in the neon nightclub central of Hankou; Yanjiang Ave (Soho, Muse, Return 97 etc). Open all day (and some of the night too!) between 10am – 2am. Serves simple food and good reasonably priced drinks. Currently undergoing some renovations but still worth a visit.
Address: Hankou, 7 TianJin Road (on a side street next to the exit of the tunnel).
Say:“Hankou, Tian Jin Lu Qi Hao (Kao Jin Sui Dao Chu Kou)- Zhua Wa Kong Qi ”
Show: 爪哇空气 – 汉口天津路7号

The Toucan Irish Bar, Hanyang. The Toucan Irish Bar in the Holiday Inn Riverside, and has all the sport pub-like paraphernalia such as a pool table, table soccer table and big screens for the games. They also have a wide range of traditional Irish food such as Guinness pie and Cornish pasties and, of course, the famous Guinness beer on draft. Both the Toucan and Brussels are favorite expat hangouts when the games are on. Similarly to Brussels -this is a rather relaxed place where you’d go to if you want to shoot a game of pool, have some beers and watch the game.
Address: Holiday Inn Riverside, No.88 Xi Ma Chang Street, Hanyang
Say: “Hànyáng qū xǐ mǎ zhǎng jiē 88 hào (wǔhàn qíng chuān jiàrì jiǔdiàn yī lóu hòu cè)”
Show: 湖北省武汉市汉阳区洗马长街88号(武汉晴川假日酒店一楼后侧)

Hot & Crazy Sugar Daddy & York Bar, Hankou. Surprisingly popular among foreign students, teachers and young business expats. Although located right next to a big main road, the most popular place to sit is outside! Very convenient to all the Hankou nightspots- Soho, Muse, Jazz & Blues Bar,  just around the corner from Chloe’s, and walking distance to Javiers – good place to chill and drink beer. Address: 160 Yanjiang Avenue, Jiang’an (beside Marco Polo Hotel) Say: Hànkǒu yanjiang dàdào 160 hào  Show: 汉市江岸区沿江大道160号


Return 97 & Very Return Club, Hankou. Located on the banks of the Yangtze, Return 97 is a massive establishment with a night club on the first floor (called Return 97) and a “Wine Bar’ on the second floor (called Very Return). This is a good bar to visit when there’s a group of you – but it’s not really the cozy couples sort of place, although on the tables they do have the Chinese dice game to play with 🙂 Conveniently located next to other night clubs if you’re wanting a big night out. Right outside is the nightclub Muse and just down the road is Sing & Song, KTV & Soho!
Address: Return 97 & Very Return Club (2nd F), The entrance of Jiangtan Park, Yanjiang Ave, Jiang’an District, Hankou
Say: “Fēicháng huíguī hóng jiǔbā,Hànkǒu jiāng tān Guàn Jǐng lóu èr lóu yánjiāng dàdào jiāng tān Gōngyuán zhèng Ménkǒu Rùkǒuchù”
Show: 非常回归红酒吧,汉口江滩观景楼2楼沿江大道江滩公园正门口入口处

Soho, Hankou. This seems to be the place where the young Chinese business people gather. Hardly the place to converse, but definitely a bar-watching sort of joint! Loud music -mainly R&B – and packed; be prepared to stand unless you have booked a table in advance (seats can be booked after 1400hrs each day). If you’re a foreigner you will for sure make some new friends here!  Located next to the Marco Polo Hotel -so you can often see foreigners here- but due to the noise don’t expect to be able to make much conversation!
Address: Soho – No. 158 Lanling Road, Yanjiang Street, Jiang’an District, Wuhan
Say: “Sū hé jiǔbā-wǔhàn shì jiāng’àn qū hànkǒu yánjiāng dàdào 158 hào wǔhàn shídài guǎngchǎng”
Show: 苏荷酒吧-武汉市江岸区汉口 沿江大道158 号武汉时代广场

Vox Livehouse, Wuchang.  Reknown as “The” venue for international musicians and bands. This is a particular favorite with the University and muso crowd. Holds regular performances and has a dance floor. Describes itself as “…not a cheesy Chinese Club… a real bar with good music and cool people…the center of Wuhans’ vibrant underground rock scene”. Usually charges a small entrance fee to gigs.http://voxwuhan.cn/
Address: 118 Lumo Road, Luxiang, Wuchang (next to the China Everbright Bank)
Say: ‘Wǔhàn shì hóngshān qū lǔ mó lù 117#guóguāngdàshà guāng dà yínháng páng”
Show: 武汉市洪山区鲁磨路117#国光大厦光大银行旁

Prison, Wuchang. The Wuhan Prison is a tiny bar around the corner from Vox which was opened by some Wuhanese punk/metal musicians with the intent of it being a place where the musicians playing at Vox could hang out after their gigs. It is a hive of expat activity and is often described in blogs and forums as a dive worth seeing!
Address: (Next to Vox) 1F, Guoguang Hotel, Luxiang Lumo Lu, Wuchang
Say: “Wǔhàn wǔchāng qū lǔ xiàng lǔ mó lù guóguāng bīnguǎn lóu xià”
Show: 武汉武昌区鲁巷鲁磨路国光宾馆楼下


5 responses to “Where to go for a drink

  1. Been to many of these (and thrown out of the muse after a thorough search of my persons following an incredibly embarrassing misunderstanding) new years 2012, I was a 20-something in search if festivities. Wondered through many of these and ended up toward midnight at blue sky. Not satisfied with 90% middle-aged (I’m being kind there) french drinkers as my peers I asked the young french guitarist where Chinese go for drinks tonight. He told me to walk a block ‘thataway’ and ask for axe. I found “the music box” and a fluent smiley boy named axe led me into a bar with 20 tables or so and chinese patrons/strangers performing karoke for each other with axe on acoustic guitar. Was invited to join many a table that night and did. Wonderful wuhanese evening! Anyone know if its still there?

  2. Hi, i noticed there wasnt very much information on the Wuchang side of the river. do you typically not go that way or are they just not worth seeing?

    • Hi, most of our events are in Wuchang. It is very interesting part of Wuhan with East Lake park, best hotels, Han street etc…

  3. There is one jazz club close to Marco polo hotel, on Yanjiang Avenue, please try there…

  4. etienne aubert


    I am a jazz crooner singing jazz from 1950’s (Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Gershwin, Nat King Cole, Irving berlin, Léonard Bernstein …) I can sing more than 40 standard tunes. Looking for a jazz club in Wuhan. I can also sing some French songs (Montant, Trenet, Michel Legrand, Piaf….).
    I will give art conferences at Wuhan University from June 19 to july 04 2015.
    If you can provide me with tips for my singing. Best to you, Etienne A.

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