Beijing Public Toilets

Following my recent post on Beijing’s new airport terminal being the biggest building in the world, Beijing has claimed another record: Having more public toilets than any other city in the world.

From the China People’s Daily article:

with 5,174 public toilets, Beijing has already outpaced New York, London and Tokyo in the number of public toilets.

This is according to a municipal government official. There’s no verification of this from other sources, but it’s still pretty impressive.

Of course, some of the public toilets in Beijing leave a lot to be desired, meeting only the most basic criteria of being a toilet. I’ve used some that look something like this:

Beijing does have some excellent public toilets that could be from any major Western city – and I’ve seen some pretty dodgy toilets in the West. However, toilets in China often leave something to be desired.

The article does say (emphasis mine):

with more than 5,000 public toilets built and renovated

Hopefully, that means Beijing is trying to improve the standard of public toilets in the lead up to the Beijing Olympics. I’m well adjusted to toilets here, but many Olympic visitors will be in for a surprise, unless there are some improvements.

While searching Flickr for photos of toilets in Beijing, I found some amazing photos that took me back to some of my own experiences. I think I’ll have to write more about toilets in China in a future post!

6 Responses

  1. Stephen

    Great post about toilets in China. There are so many restroom in China has no door. You simply face people when you do your own thing.

    In many poor city, there is no separate room for man and woman. So you simply line up and watch man and woman doing their thing.

    It’s very ugly, but very interesting.

    Great blog, I can see you re doing great! Keep it up.

    Terence Chang

  2. Hi Terence,

    Thanks. Yes, I’ve been there and done that! Away from the big cities, people stare at foreigners, including when you’re squatting across from them… It’s a bit off putting!

    I haven’t seen toilets where men and women can see each other, but I have ‘gone’ with the pigs – where the toilet is right next to the pig’s pen – which is pretty common in the countryside (maybe at people’s homes rather than public toilets).

    I found some other great photos on Flickr and I’ll be doing another post sometime soon to show them off.

  3. hey those toilets look a little rough on the eyes and look like they have been thoroughly used and abused but thats not important when you have to do the duty.

  4. Hi Stephen,

    The most public bathrooms? I guess that proves that “quality” is more important than quantity.

    The Olympics crowd is used to more high-end facilities, so this will be a real shocker! But, I’m sure the Olympics will provide better facilities than what is currently available.

    Funny post!


  5. News Blogger

    Great article. I love the interesting subjects that you choose to write about. I wouldn’t use the toilets in the photographs in this post, but they are nice snapshots.

  6. panasonic p905i japanese phone

    I never knew how toilets can be so fascinating lol. Well, you certainly have made toilets an interesting read in this great post. Thanks for providing informative posts on China. China sounds like a great place…I don’t know about their public restrooms though.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *