The Top 5 Destinations in China to Visit This Summer

Summer is approaching fast and if you’ve decided to head over to China for this year’s vacation, choosing where to actually visit may be overwhelming. As one of the largest countries in the world, China is home to more attractions, sightseeing and activities than you may be able to handle on just one trip. If you want to narrow down your options for some of the most summer friendly locations, here are a few to consider.

The Summer Palace: Beijing

OK, while it may have summer in the title, that’s not the only reason this famous landmark is on the list. While walking around the rest of Beijing during the summer may be hot and dusty, the Summer Palace is a true paradise. It’s green, full of shady trees and has quite a few lakes that give off a cool breeze. You’ll find amateur artists with their easels and paint brushes, capturing the landscape on canvas and you won’t be able to deny their motivation with the abundance of colorful flowers in bloom. A day strolling the Summer Palace wouldn’t be complete without packing a picnic and enjoying some lunch under the shade of one of these picturesque trees.

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The Muslim Quarter: Xi’an

While Xi’an’s main draw may be the Terracotta Warriors, one of the highlights of a visit is the Muslim Quarter. You could spend hours walking around this bustling market that features street stalls piled with traditional snacks and sit down restaurants offering steaming bowls of noodle soup. It’s an outdoors affair so a clear summer day makes this bustling city sect a perfect place to be. Grab a cold drink, watch the vendors make their own sweets and even visit the mosque while you wander around.

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The Li River: Guilin

This place looks like a Chinese painting came to life and its natural beauty is best seen during summer days. While Guilin offers plenty of interesting shopping in the night markets, one of the most popular things to do is to take a bamboo raft ride down the Li River. Take a personal tour or hop on with your group as a local glides you down the river on this traditional vessel. The views of the mountains in the distance are only rivaled by the huge karst pillars that tower above as you float on by. Each journey will stop half way along the river so that you can have lunch with a view before moving on to end the trip with the scene that is present on the back of the 20 Yuan note. Make sure to get a picture!

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Wuyishan: Fujian Province

This gorgeous mountain town is the place to be if you want to experience not only nature, but also the infamous Chinese tea culture. Tea plantations and ancient tea trees can be found all around the town and one of the highlights of visiting is the tea centered performance that goes on every evening. It takes place at night and tells the story of Wuyishan’s most prized tea through dance, music, light shows and intricate costumes. Plus, members of the audience are offered a free sample during the show. Other Wuyishan attractions are also available and visitors typically can be seen taking a bamboo raft down the river or hiking up into the mountains.

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Xiamen: Fujian Province

With its islands and beaches, Xiamen is a fantastic spot to explore during the summer weather. The city itself features all of the perks of a big city, including a hearty selection of restaurants serving international dishes, outdoor patios, nightclubs and shopping strips. However, once you take a quick ride over to its popularly visited island, you will find beaches and colonial style villas to photograph as you walk among the food stalls and handmade craft markets. Xiamen has been named one of the most romantic cities in China for leisure and living so make sure to take advantage of the lush city parks.

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China is filled with amazing sights, sounds and culture, often making it difficult to decide where to go. If you’re visiting during summer, take advantage of the weather and get out there to one or more of these stunning destinations.

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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.