7 chinese provinces you NEED to visit

it was pretty hard to compile this list and i must admit that it’s definitely biased. these places are easy to access for tourists and especially those who are visiting for the first time.


home to the silk road and alot of historical sites like the terracotta warriors. i didn’t get to visit gansu but i made a list of things i wanted to see: mogao caves, zhangye danxia geo park, labrang monastery, minhsha shan (echoing sand mountain), majishan grottoes, jiayuguan fort, and the infamous crescent moon lake to see a desert oasis. i grouped this with shaanxi because a bullet train between them would allow you to do both in one trip. in shaanxi, i recommend xi’an which is home to the terracotta warriors, the ancient city wall and the muslim quater. hiring bikes to ride on the ancient city wall is a must.

6. shanghai/jiangsu

the pearl of the orient
suzhou: the venice of the east

jiangsu and shanghai are both very prosperous province, both in terms of money and people. for example, jiangsu has some of the most fertile land in all of china which explains its ability to produce tasty, fresh vegetables. the canals and rivers also make it apt for human life and productivity. i have already written a post about things to do in shanghai so you can find that here if you’re interested. in jiangsu i recommend suzhou, nanjing, wuxi. i lived in suzhou for a year and

5. guangxi

guangxi borders vietnam, hence its resemblance of ha long bay. if you visit, a boat cruise from guilin to yangshuo is a must. guilin and yangshuo are for those in search of for natural and scenic landscapes.

4. sichuan

home to pandas and really really spicy food. sichuan is one of the biggest provinces in china; for reference, it’s about the size of france (the biggest country in europe). the most popular thing to do is a visit to the panda breeding site but you could also visit: jiuzhaigou, leshan giant buddha, larung gar buddhist academy, emei shan and four sisters mountain, huanglong scenie area and see a sichuan opera.

3. beijing

great wall of china
tiananmen square

china’s capital rightfully grabs headlines as the most important city to explore chinese modern history. sites such as the 798 art district, tienanmen square, chairman mao’s memorial, cctv headquaters. yet, there’s no shortage of ancient sites: summer palace, forbidden city, temple of heaven park, drum tower.


the avatar mountains

a province in the south of china, expect humid temperatures and more spicy food. hunan, which literally means “south of the lake” is home to a diverse ethnic landscape and chariman mao zedong’s birthplace. the largest city in hunan is changsha, an easy point to navigate from and to, with great transport links.


black dragon pool gives a stunning view of the jade dragon snow mountain

perhaps because its home to a few matriarchal tribes, but lijiang is by far my favourite province. the geographical, cultural and linguistic variety means that there is alot to see within the province. from shangri-la’s icy peaks to the temperate rice paddies in yuanyang.

honestly, wherever you visit in china, i’m sure you’ll enjoy it. thanks to its marvelous, natural wonders and the richness of chinese culture, there’s so much to see in china.

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