The Best Time to Visit China

When is the Best Time to Visit China?

The best time to visit China is during the months of April, May, October and November. During this time, most parts of the country are pleasant to travel to. For a holiday in China, you should consider the climate of each region, because this is very different due to the size of the country.

The high season for visiting China is from mid-January to February, early May and early October. During this time, not only foreign tourists spend their holidays in China. Many locals also explore their beautiful country during these months. This is partly due to the Chinese New Year , which is celebrated between late January and mid-February. As well as this you have the national holiday of the Chinese on the 1st of October. Therefore you have to expect higher prices for your flights and your hotel in the Far East during this time. However if you’re lucky you can get bargains in November and December.



Best Time to Visit China by Region

Peking April, May, September to November
Shanghai April, May, October & November
Xi’an April, May, September & October
Hong Kong October to April
Tibet May, June, September & October

Information about China

China is – along with Russia – the country with the most neighboring countries worldwide – 14 in total. Neighboring countries include India, Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, North Korea, Russia, Kazakhstan and Mongolia. With 1.37 billion inhabitants, China is the country with the highest population in the world. Of these, 22 million live in the capital, Beijing. With its 3,000-year-old history and numerous sights, this attracts domestic and foreign tourists. The Forbidden City, the Great Wall of China , the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace are particularly popular with travelers to China. Popular destinations for a trip to China are the metropolises of Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong. However its not just the big cities of China that can bring you an unforgettable journey.

Even China’s nature is breathtaking. The Land of Smiles is home to the longest river in Asia, the Yangtze River. At 6,380 kilometers, it is the third longest river in the world, after the Nile and the Amazon. In addition to numerous mountains, the Himalayas also runs through China. A UNESCO World Heritage Site is the Jiuzhaigou National Park in Sichuan Province. This is where the flora and fauna of China can take your breath away. Stroll along the trails and marvel at turquoise lakes and impressive waterfalls.  In the Land of Smiles, there is much to discover this is why you should plan your holiday well in advance. Do you want to know more about the best travel time for certain activities? Then read on!  In addition to this, I will provide you with extensive information about the climate of individual regions of China. If you read this article you’ll be well prepared for your journey.

Best Time to Visit China for Certain Activities

Are you planning a China trip to pursue a specific activity? Then check out the next section to know when is the best time to visit. This will ensure that it is neither too hot nor too cold or rainy during your stay in China. I’ll tell you when you should plan a China tour and when is the best travel weather for a trip to the Great Wall of China. Do you want to marvel at the famous Terracotta Army? Then you will also find all information on the best travel time here.

When is the Best Time to Visit for a Round Trip?

The best time to visit China is in September or October. Other options are the months of April and May. The Chinese spring and autumn brings the country mostly pleasant temperatures. The best conditions for a successful round trip. With the help of domestic flights, long distance buses or trains you can explore the country extensively. It gets a bit more complicated if you want to travel with a rental car through the land of smiles. The main reason being that you are not allowed to drive with an international driver’s license in China.If you are planning a tour of China with your rental car, you will need to obtain a temporary driver’s license. For stays of more than three months, even a Chinese driver’s license is required.

Chinese landscape by Train


When is the Best Time to Visit the Great Wall of China?

The Great Wall of China View


The best time to visit the Great Wall of China is mild spring with the months of April and May or the fall of September to November.During the spring, nature comes to life and the flora reveals itself around the Great Wall of China at its best. In autumn , a play of colors of nature awaits you when the trees of China shine in different colors. During the Summer, however, the popular tourist attraction is very crowded. In addition, the summer months in China bring a lot of rain. The high temperatures are generally an argument against a visit to the Great Wall in summer. In winter it is icy cold, but you can admire the sight in this time without many other tourists.

The Great Wall is one of China’s World Heritage Sites. Most tourists visit the more than 21,000-kilometer-long Great Wall of China from Beijing. My tip for the adventurers among you: At the section at Huanghuacheng the tourist volume is lower. Here you can visit unrestored parts of the Great Wall of China. There is also a flat section you can climb, but beware the climb is very steep. If you do not mind a sweaty ascent of the Great Wall, then you’re in the right place. At the top you will be rewarded with a breathtaking view of the region. And all without other tourists.

When is the Best Time to Visit the Terracotta Army?

One of China’s most famous sights can be reached from Xi’an: the so-called Terracotta Army.  Regardless of a particular best travel time you can visit the Terracotta Army throughout the year, because the excavation site is protected by its location in covered halls from all weather. The sight of the approximately 6,000 clay soldiers and horses is unique.  Do you want to combine a visit to the sightseeing with a city trip to Xi’an, 36 kilometers away? Then I would reccomend the spring and the autumn for a visit. Stroll along, during the mild temperatures, the ancient and almost completely preserved city walls. Also worth seeing is the Great Wild Goose Pagoda and a trip to the Muslim Quarter of the city. As you can see, there is a lot to experience in this region of China.

Terracotta Army in China


What is the climate like in China?

The area of the country is over 9.6 million square kilometers. China is only slightly smaller than the whole of Europe. A whopping  18 different climates influence the weather of the country. From the continental climate in the west and north to the tropical climate in the south and the high mountain climate in Tibet, everything is represented in the country. However, most parts of the country are in the temperate zone. In addition to all of this, the monsoon influences the climate of China. This gives most regions a rainy summer. Read on and get detailed information about the climate in different areas of the country. From the temperatures over the number of hours of sunshine to the rainfall of each month – all my travel calendar keeps ready for you.

Chinese Skyline View


Climate in Beijing

Beijing – the capital of China – is located in the temperate zone. In this region of the country winters are very cold and summers are hot. With a minimum temperature of -10 degrees Celsius, January is the coldest month of the year. The maximum value is 2 degrees. During the summer months, holidaymakers expect temperatures of 30 degrees in June and August and 31 degrees Celsius in July. Although July is the hottest month , it does not bring the most sunshine of the year. With 9 hours a day, May and June are the sunniest months in Beijing. Compared to Hong Kong or Shanghai, there is little rainfall throughout the year. The most rain falls in July and August. With an average of 1 rainy day, January, February, November and December are the driest months. Do you want to spend your holidays in China and visit the capital? Then choose to travel in April, May, September, October or November as this is the best time to travel to Beijing. During these months, it hardly rains, the sun shines at least 8 hours a day and the temperatures are pleasant during the day. Do not forget to pack something warm so you do not feel the cold in the evening.

Climate Data for Beijing

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature in °C 2 4 11 20 26 30 31 30 26 19 10 3
Min. Temperature in °C -10 -7 -1 7 13 18 22 20 14 7 0 -7
Hours of Sunshine Per Day 7 7 8 8 9 9 7 7 8 8 7 6
Rainy Days per Month 1 1 2 3 4 6 10 9 4 3 1 1
Precipitation in mm 3 7 10 28 31 72 178 191 46 18 5 2

Shanghai Skyline View


Climate in Shanghai

Similar to Beijing, the seasons are also pronounced in Shanghai , but it will not be so cold in winter in Shanghai. With maximum temperatures of 32 degrees Celsius, July and August are the hottest months. During this time, the sun shines for 7 hours a day. It is rarest to see in January and February, only 4 hours a day. January brings the lowest temperatures with a minimum of 0 degrees Celsius and a maximum of 8 degrees.  Just like in the other regions of China it also rains the most in Shanghai in summer. Typhoons sweep over the country and bring much rainfall to the metropolis in the east. The month with the most rainy days – 14 in number – is June. Although it rains two days in September, rainfall is the highest of the year. The best time to travel to Shanghai is in April, May, October and November, because spring and autumn bring less rain than summer. In addition, temperatures are milder during these months.

Climate Data for Shanghai

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature in °C 8 9 13 19 24 27 32 32 27 22 17 11
Min. Temperature in °C 0 2 5 11 16 20 25 25 21 15 9 2
Hours of Sunshine Per Day 4 4 5 5 6 6 7 7 6 5 5 5
Rainy Days per Month 9 10 13 13 13 14 12 10 12 9 8 7
Precipitation in mm 39 59 81 102 115 152 128 133 156 61 51 35

Skyline view of a city in China


Climate in Hong Kong

ong Kong is located in the south on China’s coast. Due to its location on the Pearl River, the city is one of the most important cities for international trade. There is also the world’s largest cargo airport, the Hong Kong International Airport. Hong Kong is in the subtropical climate, therefore the winters are dry and cool and the summers rainy and hot. During the summer months more typhoons occur. The coldest time of the year is January to February. In these months, the temperatures are between 15 and 19 degrees Celsius. The warmest months are July and August with maximum average temperatures of 31 degrees. The sunniest month is July with 8 hours of sun per day, closely followed by August with 7 hours.  March is less cheerful – the month gives holidaymakers just 3 hours of sun a day. The rainiest time is the months of May to September. The absolute maximum rainfall is in August. 173 millimeters of rain fall on 17 days of the year. Although June brings more rainy days with it – 19 in number – it falls with 388 millimeters slightly less precipitation than in August. The summer months are not only very rainy, many tourists feel it due to the high humidity and the hot temperatures as unpleasant. The best time to go to Hong Kong is between October and April.

Climate Data for Hong Kong

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature in °C 19 19 21 25 28 30 31 31 30 28 24 20
Min. Temperature in °C 15 15 17 21 24 26 27 27 26 24 20 16
Hours of Sunshine per Day 5 4 3 4 5 5 8 7 6 6 6 6
Rainy Days per Month 5 9 11 12 15 19 18 17 15 7 6 5
Precipitation in mm 25 35 56 175 311 388 378 433 331 102 38 28

View of the City of Xi'an


Climate in Xi’an

UTo get an idea of the climate in Central China , I provide you with a climate data table for Xi’an.  This region is located in the warm climatic zone. The winter brings the temperature down and in the summer it gets very hot. The coldest month is January with daytime maximum of 5 degrees Celsius and a minimum of -4 degrees, December is only one degree warmer. The maximum temperature is reached in June and July at 32 degrees Celsius. August also brings a hot 31 degrees with it.  During the summer months, the sun shines the longest with 7 hours a day. In comparison to the climate charts of the cities Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai, Xi’an has the least rainfall. The rainiest month is September with 106 mm of rainfall per month. These are distributed over an average of 12 days. By comparison, Hong Kong has more than four times the amount of rain in the wettest month of the year. The best time to visit Xi’an is from March to May.  Also September and October are suitable for a trip to the city in central China. So you escape the cool temperatures of winter and the heat of summer.

Climate Data  for Xi’an

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature in °C 5 8 14 20 26 32 32 31 25 19 12 6
Min. Temperature in °C -4 -2 3 9 14 19 22 21 16 10 3 -3
Hours of Sunshine per Day 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 5 4 4 4
Rainy Days per Month 4 5 7 9 9 9 11 9 12 11 7 3
Precipitation in mm 6 11 25 47 62 51 93 67 106 64 26 5

a huge castle in tibet china


Climate in Tibet

Tibet is subject to the climate of a high mountain. This varies enormously from north to south. Mostly because parts of Tibet are at over 4,500 meters altitude and other regions are in the high mountain valley. The best weather awaits holidaymakers in the lower elevations. Representing the climate in Tibet, here is climate data chart for Lhasa. The city is located in southeastern Tibet at 3,650 meters altitude.  Particularly popular is Lhasa for the Potala Palace, the former seat of government of the Dalai Lama. If you’re looking for the warmest possible temperatures then you should head to Tibet in June where it gets to highs of around 23 degrees Celsius. The coldest month is January with a maximum of 7 degrees Celsius and a minimum of -10 degrees Celsius. The hours of sunshine per day are quite balanced over the year. The value is between 7 hours in July and August and a maximum of 9 hours of sunshine in May, June, October, November and December. July and August bring the most rainfall – on average 15 days it rains during these months. You want to travel to China at the best time in Tibet? Then plan your vacation in May, June, September or October. Although the summer is the wettest on an annual average, in Tibet it rains especially at night. Therefore, the summer months are the most suitable for a trip.

Climate Table for Lhasa

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature in °C 7 9 12 16 19 23 22 21 20 16 11 8
Min. Temperature in °C -10 -7 -3 1 5 9 10 9 8 1 -5 -9
Hours of Sunshine per Day 8 8 8 8 9 9 7 7 8 9 9 9
Rainy Days per Month 0 0 0 1 5 10 15 15 10 2 0 0
Precipiation in mm 0 0 2 5 27 27 119 123 58 10 2 1

My Conclusion on the Best Time to Visit China

Plan your China trip and be enchanted by the Land of Smiles.  Be it the millennia-old culture, the diverse nature or the vibrant cities – I guarantee you on thing: You will never forget a holiday in China. Before booking, take a look at the climate tables of each Chinese region. There you can see that the optimal travel time varies from area to area. That’s because of the incredible size of the country.  More generally speaking best times to visit China are in the months of April, May, October and November. In this period, there is a pleasant climate in many parts of the country. In addition, you escaped in these months the rainy summer and the sometimes bitterly cold winter. Now you know everything you need to know for your travel planning your trip. I wish you a lot of fun during your China holiday!