Beijing Go Club


Every Tuesday 7:30pm - 10:30pm


We're an amateur go club. We have about 8-10 people every week, about half foreigners and half locals. We play go (aka wei qi, 围棋, baduk, igo). We also teach people how to play, do reviews, and talk about go. Sometimes we also make up go variants, talk about the pro go world, go over games from magazines, and have internal rivalries. Recently, we also started playing in local tournaments, and preparing for those games!

Our regular members rank from beginners, to a big group around 8k-1d KGS, and then 4d, 5d, 8d, and pro. We have a few beginners coming every week - we have teachers to show you the basics, and experienced players to play teaching games. I think it's best for beginners to just match up with each other and play for fun, though.

The club provides boards and stones, and attendance is free. We arrive at around 7:30 and stay until about 10:30 or 11, every Tuesday night, all seasons. Before playing, some people go to get dinner across the street at a hotpot place, or a nearby hunan place, from about 6:30. You're welcome to join that or just come to play later!

欢迎加入我们的业余围棋俱乐部 。我们每周大约8-10人,大约一半外国人一半中国人聚在一起下棋。我们同时也教初学者,并且回顾和讨论围棋。我们也会组织不同的围棋衍生游戏,谈论职业围棋, 重温杂志上的围棋布局,并进行内部比赛等。最近我们也开始参加各种当地举行的赛事,并且为这些赛事积极的做着准备!

我们成员的级别有从初学者到8K-1D KGS,4D,5D,8D ,甚至职业棋手。也有一些初学者每星期都来,因为每次我们都有老师会介绍一些基础知识,还有经验丰富的棋手教你下。当然,最有意思的就是初学者们找到棋友一起切磋,从中享受围棋的种种乐趣。

俱乐部提供围棋盘和棋子,参加活动完全是免费的。每星期二晚上我们从7:30开始下棋一直到10点半或11左右,全年如此。有些人6:30就到了,然后去街对面吃火锅,或者附近的湖南菜 ,非常欢迎你一起来吃, 或是直接来下棋。

地点在“161旅店”里面的咖啡馆,靠近市中心,离地铁 5号线非常近 。咖啡馆既便宜又舒服。


View Beijing Go Club in a larger map


We meet in a cafe in a little hostel called "No. 161 Hostel". It's near the center of the city and is pretty close to a subway stop (line 5). The cafe is cheap and comfortable.


Subway: get off at the line 5 station Dong Si (NOT Dong si shi tiao!) Exit C. Go south (don't cross any streets at the intersection from exit C; just turn around and go south (exit C faces north)) for about 2 minutes and then turn left onto "Lishi Hutong". Very soon, you'll see the hostel on the left. We meet at the little cafe inside; go in past the lobby; the club meets on the (inside) balcony in the back.

Taxi: get off at Dong Si subway station (~20 kuai from dong zhi men, maybe 50 from wu dao kou) and then follow the above directions.


地铁:5号线东四站下车(不是东四十条),C口出来一直向南走(能看到一个十字路口,但是不要过马路),转个弯朝南走约2分钟,然后左拐到“礼士胡同” 。走两步你能看到左手边有个“161旅店”,穿过大堂,我们的俱乐部就在里面咖啡馆的阳台上。


Contact me by Wechat

Wechat (aka weixin) is a chat app that's popular in china. To find out about the club, add Sam (aitkensam) and he'll invite you to the group. The Beijing Go Club wechat group has about 60 people in it. We talk about the next meeting, go news, celebrate our members victories in tournaments etc. it's also for arranging grabbing dinner before the club.



Sam or Fang, through wechat.
Or, check out our meetup group!

Mailing List

We send out an email every week announcing our next meeting. Get in touch with Sam and he will add you!


We have all levels - from the strongest who've gained 1 dan level for every 5 years of life, to people who gained 1 kyu level for every year =) (2014)

It's fun to discuss crazy joseki (2014)

One-color go! (2015)

Playing on a spinning table, with an odd number of seats. (Autumn 2014)

An interesting variant - give black the whole border, and W plays first to live. It's really hard to survive. Supposedly it's dead or ko, but can live with 2 moves to start. (2015)

We also challenge the locals sometimes (Summer 2014)

Our team playing in the Donghu Cup in Wangjing (Summer 2014)

The ultimate problem (eternal)
The team played at the Donghu cup tournament, August 2013! Thanks to Karl for organizing it all!

Carl was the only winner against the good Korean team all day!

The kids stood no chance!

Playing go outside september 2012

Big hotpot dinner september 2012

Studying Go

If you are a total beginner, you should Download Igowin - it's a little go program you can play go against.

This is a great way to learn the rules and the basic idea, without anybody looking over your shoulder. When you start, just click around til you figure out what's going on. It'll start you with a big advantage. Once the computer passes, click "pass" yourself and it'll score the game. If you keep winning, it'll give you less and less of an advantage.

Playing Online

Check out OGS, which is a browser-based online go server. We have a group there, too: Beijing Go Club OGS group. This server is way better than KGS and has a bunch of new people who are just learning on it, too.


If you have been playing for a while, and want to seriously get better, I recommend

Make an account and try the time trials, or just go through the problems. After logging in, click 'problem', 'all unsolved', and with a difficulty of 'at least 25k'. You should be able to blaze through these at first, but keep going. As you have solved more and more, remaining problems will get harder and harder until you find your level. Most problems here have variations showing the continuations, too, which is good for complex problems. You can also add comments with variations you think are wrong or missing. This site can get you all the way from 'just learned the rules' up to very high amateur level. The more effort you put in here, the more you will get back over the board. An interesting thing about people studying to be pro is that they spend more time doing problems, especially life and death problems, than they spend actually playing games.


  • Be 100% sure you have the right answer to all variations before you play it out
  • Don't guess. Try to visualize the stones in your mind
  • Diligence will be rewarded. Every single new shape and key point you learn will win you multiple games later.
  • Being good at problems will get you sudden wins and resignations, which are fun - save all that boring endgame!
After enough practice of this type, you will literally gain the ability to see stones in your head and play out variations there. Once you start to get this, playing will feel totally different.


Here is a local copy of the modified cgoban client called cgoban-h, which has a number of improvements over the official version. (this is a new version, which works with KSG 3.5 (updated january 2012)). This is included here as a demonstration of the great usability improvements possible in the KGS client; however, it's not officially approved by KGS. To try it, right-click and do 'save as' - then, run the file and connect to kgs in the normal way. (on linux, java -jar cgoban-h.jar, once you have java in your path ("which java" has to succeed)). Now that OGS is around, this won't be necessary for much longer.

Update: March 2016 - WMS just open sourced KGS! Hopefully the community will make a bunch of UI improvements now! Thanks!

Last modified: March 2016

The Beijing go club was started sometime before 2008 by Greg May & was run by Mark Pinner & Ernie from 2008-2009, Ernie from 2009-2015, and Sam & Fang from 2015-today.

We have met in about 6 or 7 different places around the city, but the current one is the best.