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A winter getaway to China

By HarryTuesday 27th October 2015

Experience China during winter, you won’t be disappointed – Image by Flickr user Nicolas will Experience China during winter, you won’t be disappointed – Image by Flickr user Nicolas will

Winter is a lovely time of year. Leaves crunch underfoot, snow covers the ground like a soft white blanket and chilly hands are kept snug inside pockets. When it comes to taking a holiday, however, winter is often the forgotten season, but there are plenty of reasons why this shouldn’t be the case.

During the winter months, China is a fantastic holiday destination, offering a variety of fun, winter activities and numerous places for visitors to witness the beautiful, snow-covered landscape. So, this winter, why not discover China? Read on for our guide to some of the best activities you can enjoy during China’s colder months.

Witness Hong Kong’s spectacular skyline from atop Victoria Peak – Image by Flickr user Brian Sterling Witness Hong Kong’s spectacular skyline from atop Victoria Peak – Image by Flickr user Brian Sterling

Climb the Great Wall of China

Undoubtedly China’s most famous landmark, the Great Wall, is breath-taking at any time of the year, although it is particularly spectacular during winter. This colossal monument winds its way from east to west in China’s north and is made up of different sections, which date back as early as 7th Century BCE. As it covers thousands of miles, it’s best to pick just one area to explore. Beijing is a popular spot for many visitors, as these parts of the wall – all of which are named – are very diverse. Explore the wall fort in Juyongguan, or take the kids to Mutianyu, a fully-restored, child-friendly section of the wall. Look around in awe while the snow falls around you, creating a scene unlike any other. Just remember to bring your gloves!

Find some bargains in Hong Kong

While other parts of China will see ice and snow, winter in Hong Kong is much, much milder, with temperatures sitting between 15°C and 25°C. It’s also one of the world’s foremost shopping destinations, making it the perfect place to pick up a few Christmas gifts, or to treat yourself to something special. Our Hong Kong Highlights Tour is a great way to get acquainted with this bustling city, as it takes you high above the city to Victoria Peak, then down to shoppers’ paradise, Stanley Market, before finishing up in Aberdeen, a traditional fishing village. From designer goods to souvenirs, Stanley Market is a great place to pick up a bargain (or two!) and grab a bite to eat. Pick up some gifts at Hong Kong’s Stanley Market – Image by Flickr user shankar s. Pick up some gifts at Hong Kong’s Stanley Market – Image by Flickr user shankar s.

Explore Chinese art at the Shanghai Museum

Whether you’re a culture buff or not, the Shanghai Museum (found in the People's Square in the Huangpu District) is a lovely place to spend a winter’s day while in Shanghai. Step inside, away from the winter breeze, and explore the huge collection of over 1,000,000 objects, including ancient bronze, ceramics, paintings, calligraphy, furniture and more. In addition to the permanent collection (which will keep you busy for quite some time – trust us) the museum also houses special collections. Kids will love checking out the interesting trinkets, while older visitors can brush up on their knowledge of China’s history.

Visit an island off Xiamen’s coast

Just a short ferry ride off the coast of Xiamen is Gulangyu, a small island which is home to about 20,000 people. Here you’ll find a beautiful garden, Asia’s largest piano museum and a complete absence of cars – the only vehicles allowed on the island are small, electric buggies! Join our Walking Tour of Gulangyu for a guided walk around the whole island, past the shops which line Dragon Head Road and stopping at Shuzhuang Garden (a 19th century Banqiao-style garden). Thanks to the mild winter weather you’ll get to enjoy the grounds and garden pavilions without feeling chilly. After that, it’s off to the Piano Museum, where you can see over 100 pianos. A great day out for the whole family! Escape the crisp weather with a trip to the Shanghai Museum – Image by Flickr user Jorge Andrés Paparoni Bruzual Escape the crisp weather with a trip to the Shanghai Museum – Image by Flickr user Jorge Andrés Paparoni Bruzual

Skate on ice in Beijing

Ice-skating is popular all over the world and is a fun activity which the whole family can take part in, especially during winter when outdoor ice rinks reopen. There are plenty of outdoor rinks to choose from in China; Beijing alone has at least five! Taoranting Park is a popular choice, with its famous pavilion (Taoran Pavilion), active wildlife and beautiful rose gardens. Wrap up warm, grab some skates from a local rental store and spend an afternoon skating in the open air. You and the kids will love it!

Experience Shanghai from above

Shanghai has a truly amazing skyline and what better way to see it than from above? The Oriental Pearl Tower – in Shanghai’s Pudong district – stands at 468 metres high, overlooking the Huangpu River and offering breath-taking views of the whole city. What’s more, the upper observation area has a glass floor, so you can see what it feels like to walk on air! As well as the many observation decks, there is also revolving restaurant, a shopping mall and a hotel. It’s a fantastic place to visit during winter, as there’s nothing quite like watching snow fall all around you (and underneath you!) while you look out over the city. See Shanghai from above at the Oriental Pearl Tower – Image by Flickr user Jeremy Keith See Shanghai from above at the Oriental Pearl Tower – Image by Flickr user Jeremy Keith

Plan your winter getaway to China…

…with Royal Caribbean. Take a look at our Asian cruises, select your itinerary, book your shore excursions and you’ll be off on your winter getaway before you know it.

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