Asia > China: Weather, Map, Costs and Travel Guide
China : When and where to go?
Click on a city for complete climate and weather tables
China: Climate & Weather
This huge country experiences a great variety of climates, from tropical to temperate which make China a multi-faceted country.
4°C - 39°F
Beijing, updated 03:30 GMT
What to do in China
The sheer immensity of this country, the strangeness of this ancient way of life, its history stretching back thousands of years, the rapidity of its current evolution, all of this makes China a fascinating destination and one that cannot be all taken in during just one visit there.
Beijing – Peking – a sprawling metropolis is home to various historical sites and cultural marvels. Start with the famous Tien’anmen Place, surrounded by monuments such as Peoples Assembly Palace or the mausoleum of Chairman Mao. The Forbidden City, vast residence of the Ming and Qing dynasties, is of course an almost obligatory stop with its magnificent architectural design perfectly maintained. The Summer Palace and its superb park, the temples, pagodas and the lake all create landscapes of such harmony and balance that are rare between natural elements and human constructions.
Take a walk through the streets (hutong) that have escaped the work initiated by the JO Organisation, stroll around the markets and taste the delicious local foods sold on the street stalls. Visit the Flea Market where you will find over 3,000 stall holders trying to sell you their goods, Satin Road and the Bird and Flower Markets are also worth a visit. At the latter you will find scorpions, turtles, spiders and cats for sale.
Shangai, another megalopolis, unfortunately has a bad reputation although in the old town you will enjoy discovering its labyrinthine streets, its bazaar, the lovely Yu Gardens and the Bund quarter with its boutiques and fashionable restaurants. Also worth seeing is the gigantic skyscraper building of the Shangai World Financial Centre and the People’s Place where you can see the Opera House.
The Great Wall should definitely be visited. Started 2,000 years ago and requiring the enslavement of countless workers, it crosses countryside that is sublime in its beauty at numerous places.
The largest archaeological site in China is at Xi’an, the jewel of which is the terra cotta army, 6,000 full size figurines and their horses, each one different, underground for 2,000 years. It makes an unforgettable scene.
Other sites worth a detour include the Neolithic village at Banpo and the Faman Temple.
Hong Kong, surprising symbiosis between east and west, offers various opportunities for visits that should not be missed: Criss-crossing the Bay in a Junk or aboard the Star ferry, a walk down the Avenue of Stars, discovering one (or several) of the 6,000 Chinese Temples in the city, coming across semi-hidden gardens and parks throughout the city offering beautiful glimpses of nature tamed and nurtured where you can cycle, walk, fish or play golf, the Arts Museum in the Kowloon quarter…
Finally, Tibet is a place apart as much for China as in the mind of the traveller. Lhassa and the Potala Palace remain magical places and the Shigatse Buddha will astound you.
China : The basics
Various airlines serve the airports at Peking, Hong-Kong and Shangai.
A tourist visa is required.
The currency in circulation is the Yuan. The budget required is larger in the east than to the west with lodging being the more expensive. Due to this, a double room will cost €10 - €60 and you can eat for €5 - €15, eating varied cuisine from different regions but always delicious.
Concerning health precautions, the essential point to remember that the water is undrinkable everywhere.
You should ensure that your vaccinations are up to date and add those for hepatitis A and B together with typhoid.
Protect yourself against mosquitoes due to transmittable illnesses. Watch out too for highly polluted towns if you suffer from asthma.
Travelling inland, the plane is of course the quickest way for long distances but the train and bus will provide you with memorable experiences. In towns, the bicycle is very practical and very popular.
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