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China Weather in February

In February, winter is still in full swing in North China (Beijing, Tianjin). There is not much change in February from January weather in the North or the South (Guilin, Hong Kong). Northeast China (Harbin, Shenyang) warms significantly, but is still always below freezing. In Central China, it is slightly warmer than in January, and signs of spring appear by the end of February.

January Weather Around China

North and Northeast China — frigid

— Beijing, Datong, Hohhot, Harbin…

Harbin's giant ice sculpture in winterHarbin's Ice and Snow Festival sculptures

Snow falls occasionally, but the total amount of snow is little because North China is dry. The Northeast is always below freezing, Beijing generally gets above freezing during the day, and then it drops to -6°C (21°F) at night.

Beijing only gets 2 mm of precipitation, just a dusting of snow, and precipitation falls about three times each month.

West China

— Xinjiang, Qinghai, Dunhuang, Xi’an, Tibet…

February is not a good time to travel in Xinjiang because it is simply too cold and inclement. But Xi'an is more pleasant with above freezing temperatures of 8°C (46°F).

Lhasa is more comfortable than Xi'an and the northern regions because the high altitude sunny dry weather feels warmer. There is a daily high of about 9 °C (48 °F). Light rain or snow only falls about once in the month. However, cold, dry Tibet may be closed around Losar.

East China

— Shanghai, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Huangshan…

Windy, humid, damp weather drives people inside and most tourists to other places in February. The average high in Shanghai is about 8°C (46°F), and the nightly low is 2°C (36°F).

Central — chilly and humid

Wulingyuan in winterAmazing Wulingyuan with a winter snow dusting

— Changsha, Wuhan, Wulingyuan, Zhangjiajie

It sometimes snows even in Central areas south of the Yangtze. The high humidity ranging from 77 to 84% and lack of heating makes it feel even colder than Beijing to the north.

The South — pleasant cool weather

— Guilin, Nanning, Hainan, Guangzhou, Hong Kong…

South China generally has pleasant winter with plentiful sunshine in the month, but Guilin feels cold because of high humidity and rain though it never freezes. It rains most of the days of the month, but you can enjoy your time at the attractions and on the Guilin river cruise dressed appropriately.

In Hong Kong, the weather is pleasant with average low and high temperatures of 14°C (57°F) and 19°C (66°F). It rains only five days in the month which makes your time more enjoyable under the sun.

The Southwest — cool dry days, cold nights

— Dali, Lijiang, Xishuangbanna, Kunming, Chengdu…

Yunnan Province and Sichuan Province generally has pleasant weather with plentiful sunshine, but high altitude areas are still frigid.

In the Yunnan region — Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, and Xishuangbanna, temperatures drop to near freezing at night except in tropical Xishuangbanna.

Average February Weather Data for Major Tourist Cities

Click the city links to see the cities' climate and local current forecast.

CitiesAverage HighAverage LowRainy DaysPrecipitation
Beijing5°C (41°F)-6°C (21°F)25mm (0")
Xi’an8°C (46°F)-1°C (30°F)410mm (½")
Shanghai8°C (46°F)2°C (36°F)744mm (2")
Hangzhou10°C (50°F)3°C (37°F)1284mm (3½")
Chengdu11°C (52°F)5°C (41°F)912mm (½")
Guilin13°C (55°F)7°C (45°F)1697mm (4")
Kunming17°C (63°F)4°C (39°F)516mm (½")

Pleasant Hong Kong weather Pleasant weather in Hong Kong

Why Visit China in February?

  • Except during the Spring Festival, it is the low travel season. Travel costs and hotel prices are lower, businesses offer bargains, and attractions are less crowded.
  • February is also time to go to China's ski resorts and winter attractions.
  • Chinese New Year is usually in February. It is a time of the year to discover Chinese culture.
  • Mild weather in the south: South China is a pleasant escape from frosty weather. Outdoor activities and sightseeing are a delight while rainfall is low.

Disadvantages: The Cold and the Spring Holiday Rush

  • It is very cold in northern China. It is cold and damp across Central China and parts of southern China.
  • Spring Festival travel issues: The Spring Festival vacation period usually falls in February. There are big crowds at attractions during these holidays. Many businesses close for three days. Hectic travel starts about three days before the start of the new year, and it lasts for nine days afterwards. Trains in general are likely to be fully booked days in advance and certain popular flights may be sold out. It is best to make arrangements well ahead of time. We can help. Read more about the yearly Spring Festival Travel Season Rush.

Also read: Why Travel in China's Winter Low Season?

China's Top February Destinations

forbidden city in winterThe Forbidden City under the snow
  • Harbin: It's famous Ice and Snow Festival is still in full swing until the middle of the month. The resorts such as Yabuli Ski Resort are still open.
  • Beijing: The amazing ancient sites are better visited in low season.
  • Hainan Island seaside escapes: Sunny weather and beaches attract holiday makers. See Beaches in Hainan.
  • The Pearl River Delta: Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Macau, and Shenzhen have warm/mild winters and a plethora of activities ranging from shopping to outdoor fun.
  • Yunnan: Wintering in Yunnan Province in southwestern China is generally pleasant except for mountain areas. Kunming, the Spring City, and the tropical rainforest of Xishuangbanna are recommended.

Check out The Best 6 Places to Visit in February.

Recommended Clothing to Pack

  • Northeast: You'll need an extra thick coat and layers of clothing to stay warm. Gloves and head covering.
  • North & Central: Coats, long underwear, and water resistant shoes with good traction. You might need your coat indoors if the heating isn't adequate.
  • East: Coat, rain gear, and water resistant shoes.
  • South: A thin coat or jacket and rain gear are enough. You might need to wear your jacket indoors if there is no heating.
  • Southwest: Dress in layers with a coat for the night.
  • Northwest and Tibet: Xinjiang is not suitable for tourism. For Lhasa, bring your coat, gloves, and head covering and dress in layers.

Festivals Add Color to the End of Winter

Hong Kong Chinese New YearHong Kong Chinese New Year fireworks

The Chinese Spring Festival and festivals of some ethnic groups are highlights.

Chinese Spring Festival: This festival is China's most popular. It falls in February two years out of three. Granted a week of holiday, most Chinese first just want to go home. Then many travel. Read more about the Spring Festival.

Tibetan New Year Festival: Tibetan New Year, also known as Losar, is the most important festival in the Tibetan calendar. It usually falls in February. Read more about the Tibetan Losar Festival.

There are many festivals and events in February.

Popular China Tours for February

You can choose between spring-like weather or winter weather in China and shopping and dining or outdoor activities. You can hike in the south or ski in the north. Pack your bag and come with us to explore the beauty of China. Below are suggested tours for your inspiration that you can modify.

If you want more suggestions and tips on a China trip, please see How to Plan Your First Trip to China for inspiration.

Weather and Things to Do in China's Cities in February