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China Weather in February 2024: Places to Go, Costs, and Crowds

China Weather in February 2024: Places to Go, Costs, and Crowds

Written by Chris QuanUpdated Sep. 6, 2023

February is the last full month of winter for all but the far north of China. Winter is still in full swing in North China with freezing weather. In Central and South China, it is slightly warmer than in January but still feels damp and chilly. Signs of spring appear in the south by the end of February.

February is not the best time for travel due to the cold temperatures, but it's the low season, which means you can have some attractions to yourself. Read on for more about China's weather in February and our travel suggestions.

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China Weather in February: Overview

  • Average daily temperature range: -2–8°C (28–46°F)
  • Average rainfall: 29 mm (1 in)
  • Average rainy days: 3
  • Average sunny days: 25

Weather in North China (Beijing, Xi’an, Harbin...)

Snow falls occasionally but the total amount is very little because North China is dry.

Beijing generally gets above freezing during the day and then it drops at night. The city only gets a dusting of snow – about three times during the month – but more settles on the Great Wall. Temperatures average -7–4°C (19–39°F) and there are typically 2 days of light rain/snowfall (6 mm, 0.2 in) in February. Xi'an is similar.

The northeast region, including Harbin where the world’s largest ice festival continues till late February, stays below freezing.

Clothing: You'll need an extra thick coat and layers of winter clothing to stay warm, as well as gloves and a hat.

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Weather in East China (Shanghai, Hangzhou...)

In February in East China, you can expect milder temperatures compared to the peak of winter. Generally, the temperature starts to gradually increase as winter transitions to spring.

Cities like Shanghai and Hangzhou experience cool to mild temperatures, averaging about 5–10°C (41–50°F). There may be occasional drizzle or light rain showers.

Clothing: Take a winter coat, rain gear, and warm, water-resistant footwear.

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Weather in South China (Guilin, Hong Kong...)

South China generally has pleasant winter weather in February.

Guilin feels cold because of the high humidity and rain, although it never freezes. Daily temperatures average 6–14°C (43–57°F) and there are, on average, 13 days of rainfall (89 mm, 3.5 in) in February.

In Hong Kong, the weather is pleasant with mild temperatures. The average temperature is 13–17°C (55–63°F) and it rains for only 5 days of the month, which can make your time outside more enjoyable than in the hot and wet summer.

Clothing: Take a warm coat and layers for Guilin, or a wind/rainproof jacket for further south. You might need to wear your jacket indoors if there is no heating.

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Weather in West China (Yunnan, Chengdu, Tibet...)

Western China is characterized by diverse weather patterns due to its vast geographical expanse and high-altitude regions.

Tibet, on the plateau, is very cold with lower oxygen and is usually closed to foreigners from mid-February to March.

Chengdu is still chilly, with temperatures ranging between 5°C and 12°C (41°F and 54°F). It is relatively dry during this month, with occasional foggy or misty conditions.

Yunnan experiences mild to cool weather. Average temperatures can range between 8°C and 18°C (46°F and 64°F).

Clothing: Dress in layers and take a winter coat, gloves, and a hat.

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Top 5 Places to Visit in February in China

From vibrant cultural celebrations to breathtaking natural wonders, this is the perfect time to explore the top five places the country has to offer.

1. Beijing

Beijing, the capital city of China, should be at the top of your list for February travel.

Although it may be chilly, the city's iconic landmarks and vibrant cultural scene make it a must-visit destination.

In February, Beijing welcomes Chinese New Year, the most important celebration in Chinese culture, with its own prestigious celebrations. The streets come alive with colorful decorations, traditional performances, and lively parades.

Don't miss the opportunity to visit the magnificent Forbidden City, hike the Great Wall, or explore the historic hutongs while experiencing the festive atmosphere.

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2. Harbin

Harbin is best for its magical winter wonderland experience in winter. In February, the renowned Harbin International Ice and Snow Festival is still going on. Huge ice sculptures, illuminated ice buildings, and exciting ice sports create a visual spectacle like no other.

Marvel at the intricately carved ice sculptures, take a ride on an ice slide, or even try your hand at ice fishing. This unique winter festival is an unforgettable experience for the whole family.

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3. Huangshan

In February, the misty atmosphere in Huangshan adds an ethereal charm to the landscape, creating a cinematic setting that has inspired countless artists and poets.

The iconic granite peaks, ancient pine trees, and hot springs make Huangshan an ideal destination for nature enthusiasts.

Enjoy a scenic hike to watch the sunrise from the famous Lion Peak or take the cable car for a panoramic view of the surrounding sea of clouds. Huangshan's awe-inspiring vistas will leave you spellbound.

If you have your own ideas, you could just contact us. All of our tours can be customized based on your interests and requirements.

Or you could see our Top Places to Visit in February in China for inspiration.

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4. Shanghai

Shanghai, a vibrant metropolis, seamlessly blends modernity with traditional Chinese culture.

The enchanting Yu Garden, adorned with lanterns and traditional decorations during the Chinese New Year, is a magical sight to behold during this time.

Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the Bund, immerse yourself in the vibrant nightlife, or explore the famous shopping streets. Shanghai offers a perfect blend of cultural experiences, gastronomic delights, and urban adventures.

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5. Sanya

If you want to escape the winter weather, then head to Sanya. In February, Sanya offers a welcome contrast to the cold elsewhere, making it a perfect getaway.

Take a dip in the warm waters of Yalong Bay, indulge in water sports, such as snorkeling or jet-skiing, or simply relax under the swaying palm trees.

Sanya also offers a vibrant nightlife scene, delicious seafood, and cultural attractions, such as Nanshan Temple.

Crowds and Costs in February

Apart from the low temperatures in February, you might have a better travel experience due to easier booking, less crowded attractions, and lower prices. Winter sports and attractions add seasonal options to your China trip.

Chinese New Year, also called the Spring Festival, usually falls in February. Millions of Chinese people head home to celebrate it with their families, so 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.

The hectic travel period starts about 3 weeks before the start of New Year week and continues for about 2 weeks afterward.

Tour China with Us

If you are interested in touring China in February, contact us for help. Our travel advisors are happy to give you suggestions and guidance when planning your trip.

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