Natural Places of Interest in Hainan, China
The largest Chinese island Hainan is located in the South China Sea and is a land of unique beauty and unique atmosphere. Like other tropical islands, Hainan offers visitors a clear azure sea, white sand beaches, green mountains and tropical flora. Maybe that’s why it is often referred to as “China’s Hawaii”.
History and structure of Hainan Island
With an area of 34,000 km2, Hainan was once an administrative part of Guangdong Province but is now an independent Chinese province. Until the mid-20th century, it was isolated from the outside world and was an immature corner of the country. Its remoteness meant that the local Lia ethnic group lived here the life of primitive hunter-gatherers and was not influenced by modernity. In 1988 a great development took place and the island became a special economic zone. Nevertheless, a number of planned projects have not yet been completed. Today Hainan is already a popular tourist resort and vacation paradise with hundreds of hotels and two international airports.
History and Structure of Hainan Island
Visitors to the island can enjoy white sandy beaches, swimming in the azure South China Sea, hiking in the lush green hinterland, and tropical flora. On the east coast of the island there are coffee plantations. The island is also unique in its rich history, the remnants of a distinctive culture, and the diversity of the local population.
A total of 37 ethnic groups live here using their own customs and traditions, which greatly influences the local cultural diversity. With twelve golf courses, it is a popular destination for golf enthusiasts. Hainan has also become famous internationally for the Miss World Election. The island is an ideal place for year-round recreation due to the relatively stable weather. Only during the summer months there can be heavier rains, sometimes accompanied by typhoons.
Haikou, with its busy port, has become the island’s capital. It is an important transportation hub located in the north of the island. Nearby is the Five Lords Memorial Temple, which was built in 1889. One of the halls today commemorates the poet Su Dungpo, who lived here in exile from 1097 to 1100. Also of interest are the massive fortifications built in the 19th century to the west of the center of Haikou. In the past it served as a defense against raids by French troops. Thus, the massive stone walls are equipped with 6 large cannons and the individual loopholes are connected by underground corridors. Farther southwest one finds the tomb of Haiju, an innocent Ming official who was deported to Hainan because of his criticism of the then rulers.
For hikers, it is worth going into the interior of the island, where there is a beautiful and unspoiled landscape. In addition, there is an opportunity to make direct contact with the islanders, who are very nice and hospitable. The most important center of the mountainous center of the island is the town of Tongsi, where you can visit the Ethnographic Cultural Park . There is a lot of information about the history and culture of Hainan. The town is the seat of the autonomous governments of Li and Miao, so there are many remnants of their traditional houses and barns scattered around. If you head northeast of Tongshi, after 50 kilometers you can reach the foot of the mountain Uzhishan height of 1867 meters above sea level. The mountain is sacred to the locals, but if you wish, you can take a pleasant excursion and climb to the top. Another attraction, the Bayhuashan Reserve, where you can see a 300-meter waterfall.
Other vacation destinations
On the east coast of Hainan there is the town of Wenchang, which is not far to the wide beaches and coconut groves in Dongjiao yelin. On the outskirts of Wanning you can explore the unique Dongshaulin area with its amazing rock formations. To the south is Xinglong, which is known throughout China for its excellent coffee. Xinglong Tropical Botanical Garden offers coffee and tea tastings.
The city of Linshui is the capital of the autonomous region of the same name. There is a Museum of Soviet Culture, which introduces visitors to China’s first Communist government, which was established on the island in 1928. Walking through the streets of Linshui , there is the spirit of the past. Little has changed since the early 20th century, the streets are lined with picturesque old stores and houses. Not far from the town of Xinglong, where the Hakka people live, Monkey Island emerges from the sea. It is so called because it is inhabited by a large colony of macaques, which are found at every step. The island can be reached by regular boat transport.
Hainan’s most popular destination is the southern coast with its tropical beaches near Sanya City. Sanya is a major tourist area as well as China’s southernmost city and the country’s leading port. The busiest beach is Dadunhai Beach with hotels, restaurants, stores and numerous entertainment venues. The beautiful wide beach stretches for 7 kilometers along Yalunhai Bay. Its white sand contrasts beautifully with the azure blue water on one side and the palm-fringed promenade on the other.
However, the beach of Tianya Haijiao is also worth visiting, which has typical rocks, the image of which is even painted on the Chinese banknote. Within 2 hours of swimming there is Simaozhou Island, which is literally a paradise for diving and snorkeling enthusiasts. Underwater you can watch a variety of colorful fish. On the island you can also make an interesting expedition to the Jianfenglin Rainforest Reserve. It hides a preserved and untouched nature with distinctive huge trees, ferns, and vines. The primeval forest has become a refuge for many species of animals, mammals, birds and butterflies. It is ideal for easy trips and hiking.
Hainan / China
Hainan is the perfect place for beach lovers and amazing natural attractions. This island is covered with beautiful tropical greenery, natural and man-made parks, pristine beaches with coral reefs and picturesque bays. For those who like eco-tourism – Hainan is an ideal place. There is plenty to do and see here. Trekking up Mount Wuzhishan or climbing to the crater of an extinct volcano – is suitable for tourists who want to experience the extreme. The beaches of the island are ideal for a good holiday. The Chinese themselves and other tourists love to relax here. There are several ideal spots for diving and surfing, so fans of these sports will also find a lot of advantages.
What are the places worth visiting first?
Nanshit Buddhism Center.
First and foremost, visitors to the city should see this stunning religious attraction, which acts as one of the largest in all of Asia. This Buddhist complex occupies about 50 square kilometers of the city. The greatest impression will cause the temple Guanyin and its huge statue of the Goddess of Mercy. It reaches a height of 108 meters.
Not far from the coastline of the city is an artificial island. It consists of coral reefs. There are several stunning skyscrapers, where are the expensive hotels and restaurants, as well as several expensive mansions, its beach with a yacht club, an entertainment complex and stores of famous brands. The island is connected to the city by a bridge.
Ethnographic village of Li and Miao.
To learn more about the traditions, culture and everyday life of the local indigenous people, as well as to examine the interesting architectural structures of the Li and Miao peoples, it is best to go to this place. This is a kind of open-air museum. Here you can even watch the performances of the villagers. They are played by real actors.
For connoisseurs of art, this place is as good as it gets. The whole exposition of this museum covers art belonging to different eras. Tourists can see the beautiful products of Chinese porcelain or enjoy the stunning paintings of Chinese masters. There is also a good collection of weapons and jade objects. There is a separate room with more valuable and older exhibits such as paintings on silk fabric.
A few dozen kilometers from the city there is a stunning natural attraction. This is one of the bays of the China Sea, the name of which sounds like “shore of the dragon. Here you can relax in comfortable hotels. Scenic beauty of this place is off the charts. The white sand here is surrounded by tropical gardens and towns with forests. Many consider this place a paradise.
A stunning bay, which can be reached on foot from the city, concentrates a lot of good beaches, where you can spend an unforgettable vacation. There are many hotels with affordable prices for tourists and other services for a favorable beach holiday. Total coastline is about 2 kilometers. Also the bay is loved by surfers because of the steady waves.
Dunshan Safari Park.
One of the main natural attractions, which is located on the outskirts of the city and attracts a large number of tourists. This nature reserve was created in the year 99. It is home to many wild animals, which tourists can watch as part of a safari tour. Here you can see tigers and lions and watch them play and feed. There are also monkeys, crocodiles, and many other fauna in the park.
Another natural attraction that was created to study the behavior of one species of macaque. These are small species of monkeys that roam freely on the trails of the reserve, and guests will be able to observe them, in their natural environment. In total, there are about two thousand of these macaques in the park. Tourists will even be able to interact with the cute animals and feed them.
This place is very popular among visitors to the city, as here you can not only see some of the most beautiful creatures, but also watch their birth. Here is a really unique collection of these species. There are also other insects in the park, just recently opened an interesting museum and there are several souvenir shops. The best time to go to the park is in the morning.
Deer Turned Head Park.
Around the high mountain, on a considerable size area is another interesting and picturesque park. Here is the location of the deer farm. Guests of the park can not only see these beautiful animals, but also take pictures with them and even feed them. Children will be especially interesting here. And the name of the park comes from a legend. Allegedly the hunter took aim at a deer, noticed that he turned his head and turned into a beautiful girl.
Zhujiang Nantian Hot Springs.
On the territory of this health complex there are very useful thermal springs. In the past, locals simply came to bathe in the healing waters. Now, it made a comfortable complex, where there is a good hotel, several restaurants, spa, and other conditions for a comfortable stay. These hot springs should visit every guest of the city.
Volcano Ma An.
On the outskirts of the city is another natural attraction. This long extinct volcano is located in the reserve of the same name. Go up to the crater itself you can thanks to the natural steps formed here because of the frozen lava. The ascent will be long, but tourists can always take a break on the arranged benches. At the top there is a good restaurant and museum.
The name of this mountain sounds like “five fingers. And this is not for nothing, because the shape of the mountain ridges resemble a human palm. This is a very beautiful place where you can go trekking. Climbing along specially equipped routes can be only two of the five peaks. Fans of this sport can enjoy stunning nature and views from the peaks.
Xinglong Botanical Garden.
On the outskirts of the city is a beautiful tropical garden, which was founded back in ’57. It occupies about 80 hectares of city territory. Here are kept very valuable plants, which are studied by the local agricultural institute. Ornamental crops alternate with fragrant vanilla, coffee trees and fruits. There are several stores where you can buy local coffee.
Yanoda Tropical Forest.
If you go to the south of the city, you can get to another stunning and beautiful place – the relict jungle. There is a large landscaped area where you can see a beautiful landscape park, visit a lotus lake, walk through a greenhouse displaying tropical orchids and even see a waterfall. There are plenty of walking paths and benches to relax in.
Not far from the city, 20 minutes away, you can get to a small but very beautiful island. Its total area is only two square kilometers. Tourists can rent a boat to get on it. This island has only recently begun to clean up for tourists, so it is still preserved stunning wildlife. And most importantly, there are very clean beaches.
Another picturesque island is situated a few kilometers from the city. To get to him, you can also rent a boat or a boat. In this place, all lovers of scuba diving, because for this sport here are ideal conditions. And all because it is surrounded by coral reefs, which hold a variety of underwater life.
The beach “Jade Belt”.
One of the most interesting and most beautiful beaches, located near the coastline of the city. The uniqueness of the beach is that it separates the salt sea from the freshwater rivers. Because of this, the water on both sides of the spit even has a different color. This beach is listed in the Guinness Book. Its total width is only a few meters, but the sand here is crystal clear.
Taoist Park “Heavenly Grottoes”.
Another stunning park in China, filled with various caves and other religious attributes believed in by the followers of this religious current. Here you can see the beautiful Dragon Temple, visit sacred trees and grottos, and just hike through the park and enjoy the stunning views.
The Park at the End of the World.
This is a place for solitude, enjoyment of nature, and reflection. This park began to form with two boulders. According to legend, these are the frozen figures of a guy and a girl who experienced great love, but could not be together. Then, other large stones began to appear around them, each named differently. The paths of the park run through picturesque places, and the view of the coast from them is simply mesmerizing.