HomeChina Guide Places to Visit in East China

The Top 10 Places to Visit for East China Tours

ShanghaiShanghai

East China has witnessed the history and rapid development of China. It is considered to be the richest region in China and possesses abundant sightseeing resources.

Here, we will introduce the top 10 places to visit in East China. You will feel as though you have stepped back in time to hundreds of years ago when visiting the ancient towns and classic gardens, and the next second you will marvel at its magnificent skyscrapers.

1. Shanghai

Shanghai, with its unique colonial past and atmosphere of vitality, creates a fantastic tourist environment. With its own development, Shanghai constantly refreshes your impressions about it. Every trip to Shanghai will give you a different feeling.

huangpu riverA night view from the Huangpu River

Learn about its colonial past as you stroll along the Bund. Walk along the historical building complex displaying various architectural styles. Each building tells a story of its golden age giving you a better understanding of the century-long charm of this city.

Get a glimpse of the locals' lifestyles when you visit alleyways and search for the most popular local snacks. Discover the precious historical memories of what life was like for Jews in Shanghai during WWII when you visit a Jewish ghetto.

Take a ferry to slowly travel from old Shanghai to Shanghai's Pudong New Area. Experience the alternation of old and new in Shanghai. Get a bird's-eye view of the entire city from the Shanghai Tower, the highest building in Shanghai.

2. Hangzhou

west lakeWest Lake

Hangzhou is on the east coast of China and is about 170 kilometers (105 miles) south of Shanghai. If using a word to describe Hangzhou, then it is leisurely. Compared to Shanghai, the pace of life there is slow. Hangzhou features enchanting scenery and rich cultures.

Visit West Lake to relax. Walk alongside West Lake or take a boat on the lake away from the crowds. Have afternoon tea by the lakeside. Watch Impression West Lake, a night show on the lake.

Hangzhou is home to West Lake Dragon Well tea. Visit the Meijiawu Tea Plantation and be a tea farmer for the day. You can learn how to pick tea leaves, the process of stir-frying tea, and the proper way to make a cup of tea.

Learn about daily life in Hangzhou through a mobile payment experience and new retail experiences. Experience paying with your face, ride a QR code bike, and visit a store without a salesclerk.

3. Suzhou

lingering gardenLingering Garden

Suzhou is a city that displays classical Chinese beauty incisively and vividly. It features classic gardens and traditional waterside architecture.

Suzhou's classical gardens are must-visit places. According to the traditional Chinese landscape culture, pavilions, rockeries, ponds, flowers, and trees are arranged in the most perfect way within the limited space.

This means that no matter where you stand, you will always capture a perfect picture. Visit the Humble Administrator’s Garden or Lingering Garden to see this.

Pay a visit to the water towns. Tongli is a quiet and less crowded water town in Suzhou. Take a cruise to see the old town. Its rivers, streets, bridges, civil residences, and gardens are integrated perfectly as one.

4. Huangshan

hongcun villageHongcun Village

Huangshan (the Yellow Mountains) is a popular destination for an East China tour as it is one of the most famous and beautiful mountainous areas in China.

Hike or take a cable car to the mountain range to appreciate oddly shaped pines and rocks, and a mystical sea of clouds. Take a dip in a hot spring to feel refreshed after your mountaineering experience.

Visit Hongcun Ancient Village, which is near Huangshan, to see the original Hui-style architecture. Go to the nearby small monastery to seek a peaceful moment as you sip a cup of tea. Escape to Bishan to experience a rural artistic utopia.

5. Nanxun

nanxun townNanxun Water Town

Nanxun Ancient Town retains its original features and traditional culture, and it is recognized as being the most authentic and tranquil water town among the top 10 water towns near Shanghai. It is located in the city of Huzhou, which is 1½ hours’ drive from Hangzhou.

See local people washing clothes, sipping tea, or playing cards beside the water, and take a boat trip to enjoy some peace and quiet.

Appreciate its architectural structures, which have an interesting mix of European styles that make it a little different from other water towns, and have some cultural experiences, such as making Chinese writing brushes.

6. Hong Kong

victoria peakVictoria Peak

Hong Kong is one of the gateways of East China and is located on the east coast. It is a shopping paradise and a melting pot of Western and Eastern cultures.

There, you can appreciate the towering city skyline. Immerse yourself in the fusion of cultures. Remnants of its colonial past, as well as the British culture and values, share space with Chinese traditions. Take the tram to Victoria Peak. Enjoy dim sum in a local restaurant.

7. Xiamen

gulang islandGulang Island

Xiamen is on the southeast coast of China, with beautiful beaches, island scenery, and good air quality. A list released by Airbnb considers Xiamen to be one of the world's 19 most popular tourist destinations.

You can go to the famous Gulang Island. Ride a bike along the island to appreciate its natural beauty and colonial-style architecture. Explore some interesting museums and shops.

Pay a visit to the Fujian Tulou, which feature a traditional architectural style of the Hakka people in the Fujian area. You can discover the history of the Hakka people and their values during your visit.

8. Qingdao

qingdaoQingdao

On the shore of the Yellow Sea, Qingdao is a beautiful coastal city. It is said that Qingdao has the most beautiful bay in the world.

Go to Qingdao's First Bathing Beach to enjoy the sunshine, fresh air, beautiful beach, and the comfortable breeze from the sea. Visit Mount Lao, the highest mountain along China's 18,000-kilometer-long coastline. It is a site that is important to Chinese Taoism.

Visit Qingdao International Beer Town, which is called the largest international beer metropolis in Asia. Every year, in the second weekend of August, Qingdao International Beer Festival is held there.

9. Shenzhen

window of the worldWindow of the World

Shenzhen is located in the south of Guangdong, on the east bank of the Pearl River Mouth Basin, separated from Hong Kong by a river. Shenzhen, China's first special economic zone, is growing at an incredible rate.

Go to Window of the World to see about 130 reproductions of some of the famous sights in the world. Pay a visit to Huaqiang North Commercial Street, which is China's largest electronics market.

10. Mount Lu

mount luMount Lu

Mount Lu is located in Jiangxi Province. It is one of the 10 famous mountains in China and is one of China's four major summer resorts.

The scenery of Mount Lu is very beautiful. There are high peaks, deep canyons, waterfalls, and streams. The capricious clouds and fog add a sense of mystery to it.

Walking on the mountain, it seems like you can easily touch the clouds, and it feels like you are soaring and floating in the sky.

Tips for East China Tours

Here, we will give you some tips and hope that they are helpful for your East China tours.

Enjoy the 144-Hour Visa-Free Policy

China has implemented a new 144-hour visa-free policy. East China enjoys this policy. It allows you to enjoy a longer stay (6 days) in East China without a visa.

Learn more on How to Transit Through China for 144 Hours Without a Visa.

A Basic East China Tour Needs 5 Days

Generally speaking, it will take 5 days to visit East China: 3 days in Shanghai, 1 day in Hangzhou, and 1 day in Suzhou.

Your pace of travel in such an arrangement will be less stressful, allowing you to fully appreciate the highlights of East China and have the opportunity to experience cultural activities.

If you have limited time or more time, you can subtract or add some cities according to your interests. If you have no idea what to do, you can contact us by using our Create My Trip service. We are happy to give you some suggestions.

Use High-Speed Trains

Because many cities in East China are close to each other, it is more feasible and convenient to take a high-speed train than an airplane.

It only takes 1 hour to get from Shanghai to Hangzhou and 45 minutes to get from Shanghai to Suzhou. From Hangzhou to Suzhou, it takes 1½ hours.

Recommended East China Tours

travel with usExplore east China with us!

Here are our top recommended tour ideas including these charming cities:

Alternatively, just tell us your interests and needs so that we can tailor-make your unique East China tour.