Xiamen Travel Guide

Xiamen Location MapXiamen Location Map

Xiamen is a relatively prosperous small city on the southeast coast of China across from Taiwan. About two million people live there. In 2006, a survey named it China’s second most livable city. It has one of China’s cleanest and most enjoyable living environments. It benefits from the ocean air and from investment from overseas Chinese and Taiwanese. It had long been an important port city for both Chinese empires and foreign empires because the natural harbor in the city is good and very deep. Though it isn’t a big city in China, both its port and its airport are among China’s top twelve. It has a global transportation network and an internationalized financial system with foreign banks and investment playing an important role in the economy. The relative prosperity will make travel in the city more comfortable, and the many historical sites, some beaches and park areas, Xiamen University, South Putuo Temple and Gulangyu Island that is a pedestrian only area are the highlights of travel to the city.

Detailed Description

gulangyu island A old western building in Gulangyu Island

The city is composed of two islands called Gulangyu Island and Xiamen Peninsula, some islets, and a larger region along the Jiulong River. The city government administers an area of 1,565 square kilometers that is divided into 6 districts. Xiamen was foreign enclaves in late 19 century, after the British forced the Chinese to open it as a treaty port in 1843, which gave Xiamen Island and Gulangyu Island lots of foreign-styles buildings built by residents from around the world.

Not only have foreigners been coming to Xiamen, but people from the Xiamen area have been moving to other countries for hundreds of years so that it is said that 400,000 Chinese living overseas are of Xiamen descent. The rulers in the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911) even tried to prevent Fujian people from leaving. Now, the overseas Chinese are investing heavily to build Xiamen’s industries and businesses including a huge mall called SM Xiamen that has a parking lot for 1,100 cars that opened in 2001. It was built by a Filipino-Chinese businessman. Wal-Mart has a mega store in the mall.

Xiamen is an ideal place for holding all sorts of international conferences and exhibitions. There is an annual tradeshow for investment and trade called the China International Fair for Investment and Trade (CIFIT). It is one of the largest in China. CIFIT is held in Xiamen every September from the 8th to the 11th. There are a lot of other conferences held, and the government wants to promote the city as a place for holding international conferences. Xiamen is working toward the goal of becoming a famous city for international conferences and exhibitions.

  • Xiamen’ Attractions: We have listed several top Xiamen attractions for you, ranking by their popularity.
  • Xiamen Weather: Information may help you have a more comfortable tour to Xiamen.
  • Xiamen Hotels: You can select an appropriate hotel and have us book it for you, which is really convenient and money-saving.
  • Xiamen Transportation: The information includes how to get to Xiamen and how to get around in Xiamen.
  • Xiamen Restaurants: These restaurants are all popular ones in Xiamen, and you can relish delicious dishes there, during your trip in Xiamen.
  • Xiamen Shopping: We have listed the major shopping places in Xiamen, including places for purchasing souvenirs.

Our Xiamen tours are all customizable, so when you have seen the sights, you can have as much time as you want for shopping and relishing snacks. What’s more, you can contact us to have us tailor-make a tour traveling to Xiamen for you.

Unique Hakka Earthen Buildings Near Xiamen

hongkeng gulou cluster Yongding Hakka earthen buildings

If you have enough time, you can visit the Hakka earthen buildings in Yongding County (about 307 kilometers from Xiamen City). The unique Hakka earthen buildings, either round or square, were originally designed as large fortresses and apartment buildings in ones. These buildings were built with the mixture of clay and sandy soil, and the wall could be thicker than 1 meter (3.3 feet). The inside structure is made of wood. The largest earthen building in Fujian Province, and the construction time is long as half century, developed by three generations. First built in 1640s, the building is the resident of Jiang family (江姓家族). During it’s the most prosperous period, there were 800 people living inside the building.

Because the famous Hakka earthen buildings in Yongding are dispersive, the best way of visiting is joining a tour group, and you’d better as least stay a night in Yongding (if not, you might be really hurry and tired). Several Hakka earthen buildings have been developed into inns, and you can live in these inns to enjoy a unique experience. However, the accommodation condition of these inns is clean and simple, but not as good as hotels.

Questions and Answers About Xiamen Travel Guide

Andi 2014-03-07
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Does anyone know if there are beaches that are available to relax on here?
Gulangyu Island is a good place for relax if you consider stay overnight on the island.

Otherwise, White City Beaches that locates in the central area is recommended, that you could take a taxi to ask for "白城沙滩" to get there where has no admission fee. Wish you a nice stay in Xiamen!

Delia Xie replied on 2014-03-08
Patricia 2013-12-23
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From Xiamen to Yongding County to see the Hakka Earthen Buildings, can we ( 2 of us) do it in 1 day. Is there a day''s tour and how much does it cost. We are Malaysian and will be in Xiamen form 29th Dec through to 2nd Jan.

Dear Patricia,

I just send you a quotation of one day tour to the earthen building for your reference.  Please check your mail box and feel free let me know your idea.


Nancy Deng replied on 2013-12-24
faozan 2013-05-28
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hi my name is ozan, well it''s really complicated to find any information about trip from hong kong to xiamen can u guys help me ? what should i take bus or train ? need recommendation .. how much time do we need and how much is the fares?
Dear Faozan, I regret that I did not find any information about the bus and there is no direct train from Hong Kong to Xiamen. I suggest you take a flight directly. It takes about 1 hour. You could find the details and book it on our website, please click this link: http://www.chinahighlights.com/intl-flights/flightlist/ Lussie Lu replied on 2013-05-29
elda 2012-11-14
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I really want to go and see the famous great wall of china,is there any placè to experience it without going to beijing which is too far from Xiamen,my original destination.any other open for tourist?

Hi Elda, the most famous and the main section of the Great Wall is in Beijing. You can also see other section in Tianjin which is near Beijing, also far far away from Xiamen.  Most sections of the Great Wall are open to tourists.

Whitney Liao replied on 2012-11-15
Maz Noer 2012-11-12
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where i can buy some electronic stuff such as cell phone or audio system with the lowest price in Xiamen..? and how much the price range..? Thanks a lot
Dear Sir or Madam, Xiamen cell phone city is a big market for shopping, it is located at No.7-26 XinjingYuan, Jiangtou west Road, Huli District(湖里区江头西路新景园7-26号). According to the price, I regret that I can't advice it to you, it depends on its brand, its model and so on. I suggest you get there to find a good one based on your need. Lussie Lu replied on 2012-11-12
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