The Best Things to do in China in Summer

The Best Things To Do in China in Summer

If you’re unsure what to do in exotic China, and, wanting to experience the best things to do in China in summer, you’ve come to the right spot. Summertime is the best time for exploration. All across the country, there are both natural and manmade attractions to help cool you off and keep entertained while you visit. From the world renowned landmarks to the outdoor activities, you won’t have any trouble finding something to do while visiting China in the summer.

A Bamboo Raft Ride in Guilin

The Best Things to do in China in Summer

Photo Source: Vacation Advice

Visit Guilin during the summer and take a relaxing bamboo raft ride down the Li river. Dip your toes into the water as your guide glides the raft past picture perfect scenery. Honestly, the landscape here is like something straight out of Chinese painting, and in the summer, it looks better than ever. Look up at the karst towers and lush green forests, and get a glimpse of the fisherman pulling in their catch. The raft will stop off on the side of the river so that you can enjoy eating lunch in the open air.

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The Hakka Huts

Located in the southern province of Fujian, the Hakka Huts are traditional round houses that have been preserved and put on display. The town itself is quaint, making the perfect place to wander in the summer air. Visitors can tour the Hakka houses to see what life was like during their prime. In fact, some families still live in them, so you’ll be able to see modern Hakka life if you’re lucky.

The Summer Palace

The Best Things to do in China in Summer

Photo Source: Wikiwand

It’s called the summer palace for a reason. Ok, I don’t know where the name came from, but it’s certainly an incredible place to visit in the summer. You’ll find this destination in Beijing, and you should plan to spend an entire afternoon there. Pack a picnic because there are plenty of weeping willow trees to lay under while you snack. Make sure to look out over the lake, wander over the bridges, pop into the Buddhist temples, and watch the artists set up shop to paint the landscape.

The Bund

It’s a classic Shanghai attraction that is at its best in the summer heat. During the day, you can find your watering hole of choice to cool off with a cold beer while overlooking The Bund. Wander around, watch the tourists, and head up the Pearl Tower to get a beautiful view of the city. Make sure to stick around at night though, because the scene is even prettier when it’s all lit up.

Xi’an Muslim Quarter

The Best Things to do in China in Summer

Photo Source: Serious Eats

Take advantage of the warm summer days by wandering around the Muslim Quarter in Xi’an. It’s absolutely bustling and is full of vendors and hole-in-the-wall restaurants. Foodies will love it here because each vendor offers something that you’ve probably never seen before. Make sure to try the colorful cakes and candies after slurping up a hefty bowl of noodle soup.

Hong Kong

Without question, Hong Kong is a lively city, absolutely electric when the weather becomes warm. While everyone is hustling around outside no matter what time of year, the summer is especially thriving. Grab some dim sum for lunch, a cocktail at an outside bar or a desert in one of the popular bakeries. Ride the world’s longest escalator and then go wandering around to find the street art that is scattered all around the alleyways of the city. Oh, and don’t forget about the shopping. You might spend hours roaming the outdoor markets, and even more, time browsing the boutiques.

Urumqi On The Silk Road

Exploring The Silk Road is a rite of passage in China, and the summer is the time to do it. Urumqi is a particularly beautiful place to see in summer as the outdoor attractions are what draw most people in. Get a view of the South Pasture which is dotted with traditional yurts and lush green foliage. Also, make sure to visit the Heavenly Lake which is surrounded by snow-capped mountains and wildflowers. Keep an eye out for the yak, horses, and sheep too.

The Great Wall

What would a trip to China be without visiting The Great Wall? You’ll be outdoors all day and be doing a fair bit of walking, so a visit in the summer is ideal. Sure, it may be a little warm, but most people prefer to hike around the wall in hot weather instead of in the freezing cold. Don’t worry, you can stay put and photograph the beauty of the wall from underneath a shady tree, or you can get out there and really explore the history under the summer sun.

Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Center

Head to western China to eat some spicy Sichuan food and to check out the panda bears. China is known for its Giant Panda population, and this breeding center in Chengdu is one of the best places to watch them. Come in the late summer to see most of the action and to learn all about the species at the onsite museum.

Mountain Biking in Yunnan

This part of China is a destination for mountain bikers. While cyclists of any level can try out the trails, the area is notorious for some of its more challenging terrains. If you’re able to take your eyes off the bike trail, make sure to enjoy the view of Tiger Leaping Gorge, Jade Dragon Mountain, and the local ethnic villages that dot the area.


The Best Things to do in China in Summer

Photo Source: Simon Seeks

This is the best beach spot in all of China. It’s one of the only beach resort towns in the country and is a great place to spend a few summer afternoons. While there might be quite a few people crowding the beach, it’s easy to sneak away and do some sunbathing with your travel partner or family. And, if you like a little adventure every once in a while, the kiteboarding and surfing in Hainan are pretty renowned. After a day full of sand and waves, stop in one of the nearby bars and restaurants to party the night away.

Visiting China during the summer is a completely different experience than traveling there in the winter. Take advantage of the sun rays and enjoy all of the natural glory that China has to offer.

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Shannon Ullman

Hey! I'm a published American travel blogger and teacher. My travel writing has been featured on Huffington Post, Elite Daily, Matador Network and Thought Catalog. I spent over a year living and traveling around China while I taught English there. I have also visited dozens of other countries around the world.