China Winter Destinations

Winter is an off-season. Where to go during winter in China? We have taken a look at China's many unique tourist destinations and picked the below to recommend to visitors to China. Our picks have been made subjectively based on personal experience and extensive research.


One of the best times to visit Beijing is winter (December to February).The monthly average temperature is below 0 . It seldom rains in the winter season but there is plenty of sunshine. At this time of year, all of Beijing becomes festive and full of activity, the streets, parks, and Great Wall turn into wonderlands of snow and frost with families out and about strolling and taking in the beautiful nature.

In winter, Beijing people are skiing, ice skating and sledding. The theaters, museums, parks and many historical sites are open and are less crowded than during other seasons. So long as you avoid Chinese Spring Festival during January or February you can have a relatively peaceful time at places like the Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven, and even at the Great Wall.

Beijing stages both international and domestic folk activities. The two best-known activities are the Longqingxia Ice Lantern Festival and the Temple Fairs. The former is located in North of Gucheng Village, Yanqing County, 80 km north of Beijing. It usually starts in the mid-January and ends at the end of the February. The festival is never quite match the famous ice sculpture festival in Harbin in scale or beauty. However, it is a fun option for families who want to spend the day somewhere close, cheap and more comfortable than biting Harbin. The latter, the temple fairs take place in some ancient temples during Chinese Spring Festival when people perform traditional national art forms such as, the local operas, dragon dance, lion dance, Yangko dance, acrobatics, martial arts and so on. Also, the temple fairs are the show cases of all kinds of Chinese snacks. If you visit Beijing during Spring Festival, visiting one of the temple fairs should be in your itinerary.

Winter is truly the best time of year to experience the true warmth of the Beijing people and enjoy traditional Chinese culture. So, trip to Beijing, trip to Beijing in winter.   

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Xiling Snow Mountain

Xiling Snow Mountain is a national scenic resort, which lies in Dayi County, Sichuan Province. The resort is about 95 kilometers away from Chengdu, the capital city of the province. The highest peak in this area, Snow Pond, is 5,364 meters above sea level and is capped with snow all year round; it is also the highest mountain in Chengdu. Xiling Snow Mountain is an ideal destination for your winter break in south China. During the winter months the temperature hovers just below the freezing point, often dipping to - 10 ℃. Snowfall starts around mid December and lasts till Mid March. Best time for skiing is January and February.

Xiling Snow Mountain is famous for its ski resort. The ski resort is located at the hillside of the back Xiling Snow Mountain, it covers an area of 7 square kilometers and snows up to four months (early December to late March of the next year). Equipped with beginners, intermediate level and advanced skiing courses, it can contain 2,000 skiers at the same time. Other facilities here include cable cars, snowmobiles, snowfield pulleys, and sleds, etc. Measuring 2,500 meters long, the cable car line between the Sun and Moon Platform and the skiing resort is the longest cable line in China. A single ride on it takes about 40 minutes. 

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Yunnan Winter Highlights brings you the very best of the season with the ethnic culture & custom, traditional villages, old towns, vernacular dwellings, primitive forests, the charming snow mountains and the hauntingly beautiful monasteries and temples. This is a winter-time holiday treat you will savor forever.  

Yunnan is a warm winter holiday destination in China. From December to February, the generally temperature is between 12ºC - 18ºC, and if there is sunshine, the temperature can rise above 20 ºC. The suggested destinations are Kunming, Dali, Lijiang, Shangri-la, Jianshui, Yuanyang and Xishaungbanna. 

When you add the unique opportunities that only Yunnan winters offer with the small crowds, the result is an unforgettable travel experience. In the best that Yunnan winters have to offer, you'll wander through the natural wonder Stone Forest, overlook the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Cultural Landscape of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces with its beautiful curves and colors, cruise in Erhai Lake or take a boat with a fisherman to see his cormorants catching fish, explore one of the deepest and most spectacular river canyons in the world - Tiger Leaping Gorge, Mount on the stunning Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, lost in the legendary Shangri-la, stroll in the national parks, visit Dai, Naxi, Bai and Mosuo peoples' families, taste delicious local food, and much, much more.

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Located in the Yangtze River Delta in East China, Shanghai sits at the mouth of the Yangtze River in the middle portion of the Chinese coast. Shanghai is the largest city by population in China and the largest city proper by population in the world. It is a global financial center, and a transport hub with the world's busiest container port.

Winter in Shanghai is from December to the next February and is characterized by cold north wind and heavy humidity with the average temperature at about 5 ℃. The coldest time is from the end of January to early February when Shanghai temperatures can drop below freezing. Snow is rare in Shanghai, but winter is the driest season of the year in this international bigalopolis while it receives more than 5 hours of sunshine. If you travel in Shanghai during the winter season, just do as the locals do: wear long-johns and every item of clothing you own and shed them as required.

Tour Shanghai in winter is an ideal choice, with the Christmas and Chinese New Year holiday festivities on for a good part of the season, tourists can have a good knowledge of Chinese festival culture. And if you enjoy indoor activities such as visiting museums, art galleries, temples, mosques and cathedrals/churches or spending a few hours watching acrobatics shows, you can also enjoy all of these for yourself in Shanghai. 

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Yellow Mountain

Welcome to the Yellow Mountain (Mount Huangshan), a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the best place in winter to view the snowscape in South China. The mountain is located in southern Anhui Province. Its landscape features "five wonders" of imposing peaks, spectacular rocks, odd-shaped pines, sea of clouds, and winter snow. It is consistently a winter paradise for the photographers and shutterbugs. 

In winter, the Yellow Mountain is as beautiful as a snow-covered fairyland. Numerous ravines and peaks are covered with ice or snow. The glittering and translucent spectacle in the sunshine resembles ice sculptures and brings you refreshing enjoyment. The spectacle of rimed trees sparkling in the sun is the privilege of winter alone for it is then that you may find yourself in a silver world with the icy peaks, clusters of frosty corals suffused with a plentiful supply of the freshest of oxygen rich fresh air. Besides, as it is a low season, you can enjoy it more relaxing with lower cost. 

The Yellow Mountain is not quiet cold in winter, at least, not as cold as some people expected. The avarage temperature is -3 ℃ to - 4 ℃ in winter, but it's enough to result in fantastic winter scenery and a silver world with pines and precipitous peaks covered with snow and decorated with icicles. The magnificent mountain blanketed with snow in winter will enable you the unique experience of visiting a different Yellow Mountain.

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Something special happens to Zhangjiajie in winter. The snowy stone forests take on a mystical silence, clouds billow up gently around the quartz-sandstone pillars and peaks, and an air of solitude permeates the pristine, snow-covered wonderland. Zhangjiajie, with its unique karst peaks, mountains, lakes, caves, streams, forests, and wildlife, is stunningly beautiful and peaceful when blanketed with crisp, white snow. To truly experience the serenity of the season, spend some time exploring Zhangjiajie’s magnificent winter. These are some of the images of winter in Zhangjiajie, and you can put yourself in these pictures. 

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Jiuzhaigou Valley, a world famous national park and UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a fantastic wonderland complete with huge snow drifts and frozen waterfalls in winter, and best of all, very few tourists. Jiuzhaigou in winter is particularly peaceful, and poetic, the mountains and trees are wrapped in white, waterfalls and lake surfaces are smooth and glittering, ice covers the lakes and hangs from the waterfalls. Although it may seem cold, with average mean temperature of - 3.7 ℃ in January, adding a decent jacket and thermal underwear to your normal clothes should be plenty to allow you to brave the temperatures and venture forth.

A winter visit to Jiuzhaigou National Park will give you lasting memories of snowy landscapes, icefalls, steaming color lakes, and incomparable bird viewing. When winter comes at the end of October, the whole park turns into a pure white world, some of the lakes are frozen while the others are not. The blue-green color of the water is distinctly visible even in winter. White is the theme color of Jiuzhaigou in winter.

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