Our top spots in China – where will your China #adventure take you?
China has so much to offer, and whether you love exploring big cities or tucked away villages, mountain hikes or temple hopping, history or modernisation, this vast and fascinating land really does have it all. We compiled a list of our top spots in China!
All Teaching Jobs and Immersion and Study program participants all have 11 days of public holiday off work, plus a further 2 weeks of annual leave – giving plenty of opportunities to book a train, pack a bag, and head off for some serious sightseeing with friends and colleagues!
Seek comfort from the modernity and westernised way of life in this buzzing mega city, taking in the magnificent skyline of Pudong, shopping centres on every street corner and the busy bars and nightlife. Shanghai is also a fantastic base in order to visit the traditional cities of Suzhou and Hangzhou, which are only an hour away by fast train.
Fujian: Mount Wuyi
350 kilometres northwest of Fuzhou, a major landmark in southeast China and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Mount Wuyi was the setting for the development and spread of neo-Confucianism, influential in East Asia since the 11th century. Bamboo rafting in the Nine Bend River is a popular tourist activity – it’s a 2 hour trip providing stunning views of Mount Wuyi’s serene beauty.
Xi’an’s Ancient Incredible Terracotta Warriors
Obviously one of China’s highlights, we couldn’t miss out the amazing Terracotta Warriors! Located about an hour outside of Xi’an city in Shaanxi province, this army is made of a type of pottery or clay called terracotta. The soldiers stand in perfect lines, protecting emperor Qin Shi Huang in the afterlife. It’s an open archaeological site, which means you’ll see archaeologists actively reassembling the broken pieces of clay. The history is absolutely fascinating.
Chengdu’s Panda Sanctuary
We all know that pandas are super cute, fluffy, playful, super cute…we digress, this famed panda base offers an interesting insight into panda breeding and conservation, and there’s even the chance to cuddle a baby panda for a fee! It’s really accessible from Chengdu, and easy to make your own way there outside of the key tourist times.
Hainan: Yalong Bay (Sanya)
Hainan is perfect for beach and water sport lovers, and is arguably the best tropical setting in China! The white sand beach lined with palm trees is the most popular and developed stretch of Hainan’s southern coastline, so whether you’re looking to surf or chill with a book, this resort offers an ideal setting for a beach break.
Longji Rice Terraces
Longji Rice Terraces (aka the Dragon’s Backbone Rice Terraces) is the most amazing terrace in China! Construction of the terraces began in the Yuan Dynasty, and continued for over 500 years until the early Qing Dynasty when construction was completed. The Dragon’s Backbone Rice Terraces are the culmination of both the profound wisdom and strenuous labor of the Zhuang people. There’s some fabulous hiking to be done around the rice terraces, though finding your way when outside the signposted areas can be tricky at times, so it’s recommended to get a local guide to lead the way for a small fee.
The Leshan Giant Buddha, Sichuan
The Giant Buddha of Leshan (aka Dafo) is the tallest stone Buddha statue in the world, carved out of a cliff face by an 8th-century monk in southern Sichuan province. It’s a massive 71 metres tall, and has to be seen to appreciate its sheer scale! The Giant Buddha overlooks the confluence of the Minjiang, Dadu and Qingyi rivers and faces the sacred Mount Emei. The area was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.
Take in some serious lakeside beauty! This massive lake is the crown jewel of Jiuzhaigou, a region of stunning alpine lakes and waterfalls. The lake changes colour throughout the day and year due to the reflection of the surrounding landscape, as well as algae and rocks at its bottom…amazing!
Of course not technically China, but as a huge flight hub or quick hop by train over the border, Hong Kong really is the quintessential city break. Think epic shopping opportunities, some of the world’s best restaurants and bars, a stunning harbour, museums and many parks. Take a trip up Victoria Peak (FYI- if it’s a hot day, walking up is not the greatest idea…) at sunset and soak up the views.
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