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The Best Times to Travel to China

The Best Times to Travel to China

Written by CindyUpdated Feb. 7, 2023

China is a year-round travel destination. Regardless of when you go, there is always a place that is worth visiting. 

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China has reopened for travel. You can enter China now without quarantine. To tailor make an affordable private tour, simply contact usYou can enjoy free cancellation up to 24 hours before departure.

To any visa-related questions, you can get an answer fast by joining our Going to China Facebook Group with 13k active memebers. ​It is where people talk about China entry policy everyday with real experience. Topics include tourist visa, transit visa-free policy, M visa and more. Some who have entered China smoothly woud share their experience as well.

The Best Time to Visit China

Weather-wise,the best times to visit China are spring (April–May) and autumn (September–October), when most of the popular places have their most tourism-friendly weather.

The cultural and historical destinations like Beijing, Shanghai, and Xi'an are hardly affected by weather conditions. They are suitable to be visited all year round. (See Best Time to Visit Beijing)

Recommended affordable private China tours

The Worst Time to Visit China

Most of attractions are flooded with Chinese tourists during the festival and holidays as below:

  • Labor Day Holiday (May 1-3)
  • Chinese National Day Holiday (October 1-7)
  • Chinese New Year Holiday (in late January or early to mid February). 

If you are travelling during the above periods, book well in advance and get ready for crowds of Chinese tourists. You can send us an inquiry directly with your travel requirements. With China Highlights, you enjoy no-risk booking, 100% refund policy! (up to 24 hours before departure)

See How to Avoid Crowds at China's 10 Busiest Attractions

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Visiting China in Spring (April to May) 

The Li River in springThe Li River in spring

Weather: It is warm and comfortableTemperatures average 10–23°C (50–73°F), warming up, with fresh air. Though relatively dry in north China, rain intensifies toward summer in south China.

Spring is one of the best times to visit China, especially for nature lovers. Flowers bloom and temperatures are cool to warm.

Wet weather needn't dampen travelers' spirits in the south of China. The rains can actually enhance views, with mountain mists in areas like the Li River (Guilin) and the Yellow Mountains.

If you're bothered by rain showers, make your trip to drier Beijing and Xi'an. See more on Top Places You Should Visit in China's Warm Spring.

Recommended China tours for spring:

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Visiting China in Summer (June to August)

Weather: Summer is hot. daily temperatures average 25–33°C (77–91°F); rainy season in most areas, especially south and east China

Zhangjiajie Forest ParkZhangjiajie Forest Park

Summer is in fact the time with most things to do in China - from city sightseeing and sunny mountain hiking to minority festivals.

It offers optimum conditions for mountain and highland destinations, such as Tibet, Yunnan, Guilin, and Zhangjiajie. .

Be prepared for heat and try to book in advance if you are visiting Beijing, Xi'an, and Shanghai. If traveling to southeast China, e.g. Hong Kong, be flexible with your itinerary in case of flight delays or cancellations caused by typhoons.

Summer (June–August) is a good time to travel, except for the crowds and the heat. It is a peak travel time for Chinese families with school-age children, and students.

If the heat and crowds are challenges for you, a private tour will make your trip easier and more comfortable. Your guide can help you avoid the crowds and private air-conditioned transport will keep you cooler. See more on Top Places You Should Visit in China in Summer.

Recommended China tours for summer:

If you have other places you want to go, you can also contact us. We will create a trip according to your group size, time, budget, interests, and other requirements.

Visiting China in Fall (September to October) 

Weather: Temperatures average 15–27°C (59–81°F), lower rainfall, more clear days

The Longji Rice Terraces in fallThe Longji Rice Terraces in fall

Overall, autumn in China has the best weather conditions with less rain than spring or summer, and more clear days. Most of China has warm to cool temperatures, and the summer rains have stopped (apart from around Hong Kong). So it's relatively dry.

Many travelers choose autumn to visit China, especially outdoor activity lovers. The fall hues and variety of fresh local fruits will enhance your trip.

Get inspiration from Top Places to Visit in Autumn in China.

Recommended China tours for autumn:

Visiting China in Winter (November to March) 

Weather: Average daily high temperatures of 8°C (46°F), in northern China it's usually below zero

The Forbidden City in winterThe Forbidden City is quiet in winter.

China's winter low travel season is from November to (early) March. In the low season, although the weather is colder, you can save money on hotels, flights, and entry tickets, and you can avoid the tourist crowds.

Cities in China's north and northwest areas like Beijing, Xinjiang, and Harbin are gorgeous under a blanket of snow. The annual Harbin Ice and Snow Festival opens in late December and lasts for around 2 months.

If you can't handle the chilly weather, south China has warm places, such as Hong Kong, Macau, Sanya, and southern Yunnan.

See more on our China Winter Travel Guide - Places to Go, Activities, Suggestions.

Recommended China tours for winter:

All our tours can be customized. The itinerary can be adjusted according to your group size, time, budget, interests, and other requirements. Just contact us.

Best Time to Experience China's Traditional  Festivals

Guizhou Miao ethnic people It's a Miao custom to offer visitors wine from a horn.

If you are after China's traditional and ethnic culture, and are fond of colorful local pageantry, travel to China during a traditional festival, such as:

Join in the festive celebrations and experience authentic Chinese culture with our China festival tours. You can find out how locals celebrate the most important days in their calendars.

Let Us Help You Plan Your China Trip

Guilin Longji Rice TerracesOur clients enjoyed a tailor-made tour to a Miao village in Guilin. 

Our travel advisors are very glad to give you suggestions and guidance for your trip planning. They can tailor-make your trip according to your interests and requirements, and help to find the best time of year to go to China for you.

Let us help you design a trip now. Or you can have a look at our most popular customizable itineraries:

Or you can read our suggestions on how to plan your trip to China this year.

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