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Top 8 May Destinations in China

Planning a trip in May? Do you already have somewhere in mind to enjoy the spring weather before the blistering heat sets in? has chosen eight of the most suitable destinations. Choose the one you like and get ready to set off.

NO.8 Dalian Sophora Japonica Festival

The Sophora flower, emblem of Dalian, in full blossom

The port of Dalian is famous for its agreeable climate, clean air, exquisite beaches, sea breezes and fresh seafood. A coastline stretching 1,906 kilometers offers a huge choice of beaches and beautiful scenic spots. It's neither too cold in winter nor too hot in summer, making it an ideal destination. Not to be missed are Bangchui Island, Dalian National Coast Geopark, Bingyu Valley Scenic Area, Tiger Beach Ocean Park and the Natural History Museum. The city is also well known for the numerous varieties of Sophora trees that can be seen all round the city. In late May, Sophora blooms fill the air with an enchanting fragrance. The 22nd annual Sophora Japonica Festival will be held between May 25 and May 31.

NO.7 South Sichuan Bamboo Sea

The South Sichuan Bamboo Sea

The South Sichuan Bamboo Sea lies between Changning and Jiang'an counties in Yibin, 400 kilometers south of the provincial capital Chengdu. This luxuriant bamboo forest is listed among the top 10 most beautiful forests in China. It became even more popular with tourists after fighting scenes from the movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon were shot here. The bamboo groves extend more than a dozen kilometers along a mountain range. Leaves undulating in the breeze, birdsong and the oxygen-rich air leave visitors refreshed and relaxed. May to August is the best time to visit.

NO.5 The Great Wall at Jinshangling

The Jinshangling section of the Great Wall

The Jinshangling section of the Great Wall is in Luanping county, Hebei province, 120 kilometers northeast of Beijing. This section of the wall was first built in the Northern Qi Dynasty (550 - 577) and later rebuilt during the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644). It winds its way through mountains for 10.5 kilometers and has 67 watchtowers and 2 beacon towers. It is considered the best preserved section of China's Great Wall, with watchtowers in various shapes and styles surrounded by marvelous scenery. But trekking here can be a challenge as the steps are steep and uneven. In spring, the azalea blooms on the mountains are a spectacular sight.

NO.4 Lhasa

The Jinshangling section of the Great Wall

Lhasa, capital of the Tibetan Autonomous Region, is 3,650 meters above sea level on the roof of the world. Lhasa means the "Holy Land" or the "Buddha Land" in Tibetan, and the ancient city, dating back 1,300 years, is Tibet's political, cultural, economic and religious center. May to October is the best time to visit, as it rains at night but is sunny in the day time. The magnificent Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple Monastery and Norbulingka (Garden of Treasures) are listed as world heritage sites. Other must-see attractions include Lake Namtso, Lake Yamdrok, Barkhor Street, and Drepung Temple.

NO.3 Longji Terraces, Guilin

Longji Terraces, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region

Said to be the most beautiful rice terraces in China, the Longji (Dragon's Backbone) Terraces are located near Pingxiang town in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. The terraces resemble the scales on the back of a dragon – hence the name. A good time to view the terraces is at sunrise, and the best time to visit is in May when water in the newly irrigated fields reflects the green rice seedlings and the cloud-dotted blue sky.

NO.2 Qinghai Lake

Qinghai Lake, a paradise for birds

Qinghai Lake is the largest inland lake, and the largest salt-water lake, in China. It lies 4,500 meters above the sea level on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, surrounded by four mountain ranges. It is known for its fascinating color changes when viewed from different angles, at different times of day, and in different seasons. Horses and sheep graze on its grassy shores. But the main reason for visiting is to watch the tens of thousands of migrating birds that fly immense distances to breed here in the spring. Late April to early July is the best time to see huge flocks of birds spreading their wings over the vast lake.

NO.1 Shangri-La

In May, Shangri-La is a sea of azaleas under vast blue skies []

Shangri-La, a Tibetan town in the northwest of Yunnan Province, is a hidden paradise of spectacular landscapes and ethnic culture. Set in tranquil grassland surrounded by snow-covered peaks, gorges, lakes and virgin forests, Shangri-La County’s attractions include the famous Tiger Leaping Gorge, Songzanlin Temple, Bita Lake Nature Reserve and Baishui Terrace (White Water Terrace). Shangri-la is at its most beautiful in May and June when the grassland is carpeted with colorful flowers. In May, the county is a sea of azaleas under vast blue skies. Visitors can also experience the lifestyle, culture and cuisine of 13 different ethnic groups.

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