Exploring Chengdu: 25 Must-See Attractions and Activities

Chengdu, beckons with its unique blend of modernity and rich cultural heritage. Renowned as the home of the giant panda, the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding offers an enchanting encounter with these beloved creatures.

The city’s vibrant culinary scene, famed for its spicy Sichuan cuisine, invites gastronomic exploration in its bustling street markets and traditional teahouses. Chengdu’s historical treasures, such as the Wuhou Shrine and Jinli Ancient Street, provide a glimpse into its ancient past.

The laid-back atmosphere, beautiful parks like People’s Park, and the intricate beauty of the Dujiangyan Irrigation System make Chengdu a captivating destination for those seeking a harmonious blend of nature, history, and delectable experiences.

In this guide, I will unveil the gems that make Chengdu an unforgettable destination. Let’s dive into the top 25 experiences that will leave you captivated!

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🌟Chengdu Travel Planning Guide

Considering a last-minute trip to Chengdu?

🇨🇳 Top Activities and Tours in Chengdu:

1. Private Half-Day Chengdu Panda Breeding Center Tour with Optional Volunteer
2. Mount Qingcheng and Dujiangyan Irrigation System Private Day Tour from Chengdu
3. Tea Village in lost Town and Buddha 1 day tour
4. Sichuan Culture Opera Show in Chengdu

🍲 Top Food Tours in Chengdu:

1. Tuktuk Food Tour Through Chengdu’s Local Eats
2. Half-Day Chengdu Courtyard Cooking Class with Local Market Visit

🏨Top Hotels in Chengdu:

The Temple House (⭐️ 4.8 luxury)
Niccolo Hotel (⭐️ 4.8 luxury)
ISEYA HOTEL (⭐️ 4.8 mid-range)
Wadang Washe Traveling Hotel (⭐️ 4.8 budget-friendly)
Chengdu Blue City Yuexing Hot Spring &Food Hotel (⭐️ 4.8 budget-friendly)

🌐Make sure to install ExpressVPN in advance for unrestricted internet access during your stay in China!

🌏 Where is Chengdu Located

Chengdu is situated in the southwest of China, specifically in the Sichuan province. It lies on the fertile Chengdu Plain, bordered by the Qinling Mountains to the north and the Tibetan Plateau to the west. Geographically, it’s positioned at the western edge of the Sichuan Basin, a region renowned for its rich agricultural land and mild climate.

Chengdu is a significant cultural, economic, and transportation hub in western China, attracting visitors with its historical sites, culinary delights, and proximity to natural wonders such as the famous Giant Panda sanctuaries.

👑 Top Must-Visit Places in Chengdu

1. Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding

The Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, commonly known as Chengdu Panda Base, is a popular destination for visitors interested in giant pandas.

The main highlight of the Chengdu Panda Base is, of course, the giant pandas. Visitors can observe these adorable creatures in their naturalistic enclosures. The base is home to both adult pandas and baby pandas, providing an opportunity to see pandas of different ages.

The base serves as a research and breeding center for giant pandas. Visitors can learn about the conservation efforts being made to protect these endangered species. Information is often available in both English and Chinese.

If you’re lucky, you might get to see baby pandas in the nursery. The base is actively involved in breeding programs to increase the giant panda population, and visitors can witness the cubs playing and interacting with each other.

In addition to giant pandas, the Chengdu Panda Base is also home to red pandas. These charming and lesser-known animals have their own designated area where visitors can watch them play and explore.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 30
⏰Opening hours: 07:30 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take Metro line 3 to Panda Avn. station, Exit A for shuttle bus to base.

2. Kuanzhai Alley (宽窄巷子)

Kuanzhai Alley, which includes Kuan Alley, Zhai Alley, and Jing Alley, stands as a significant surviving Qing Dynasty street in Chengdu. Repurposed from local historical structures, it features a blend of late Qing and early Republic-era architectural styles, encompassing both traditional and early Western influences, providing a snapshot of life in old Chengdu.

The winding alleys are lined with high-end restaurants, cafes, bars, street food stalls, and creative cultural product stores. Moreover, the alleys boast distinctive teahouses, Sichuan Opera face-changing performances, ear-cleaning services, and living statues, allowing visitors to fully immerse in the cultural and folk traditions of Sichuan.

A must-try experience in Kuanzhai Alley is the ear cleaning service, a unique folk craft native to old Chengdu. While strolling through Kuanzhai Alley or Jinli, it’s common to encounter ear cleaners offering similar services. Trying this craft here is essential to truly appreciate the comfort it provides, as it’s a rare folk skill not easily found elsewhere.

🎫Admission ticket: free
🚗How to get there: Take Metro Line 4 and get off at Kuanzhai Alley Station

3. Wuhou Temple (武侯祠)

Wuhou Temple is the only temple in China that combines the worship of monarchs and ministers, renowned as the memorial site for Zhuge Liang, Liu Bei, and the heroes of the Shu Han period. It is also the most influential Three Kingdoms historical museum in the country.

The temple complex houses various shrines dedicated to Liu Bei, Zhuge Liang, Guan Yu, Zhang Fei, Zhao Yun, and other military and civilian figures from the Shu Han period. It also preserves numerous artifacts and records of historical events.

Connecting Wuhou Temple to The Mausoleum of Liu Bei is a pathway flanked by red walls, known for its famous Red Wall and Bamboo Shadows, a sight no visitor to Wuhou Temple should miss. The combination of emerald bamboo, golden gingko trees, and red walls creates a picturesque scene.

While Wuhou Temple is known for its prominent attractions, there are many undiscovered spaces within the vast complex. Chengdu’s ubiquitous teahouse culture is also present in Wuhou Temple.

A guided tour is highly recommended for exploring Wuhou Temple. If hiring a guide is not preferable, renting an audio guide or researching about Wuhou Temple beforehand is advisable. Without historical context, Wuhou Temple may seem like a conventional garden and temple complex.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 50
⏰Opening hours: 09:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take Metro Line 3 and get off at Gaoshengqiao Station.

4. Jinli Street (锦里)

Jinli, situated near Wuhou Temple, is a reconstructed ancient commercial street with a focus on the Three Kingdoms culture. This street encapsulates the essence of Chengdu life, featuring teahouses, inns, restaurants, bars, stages, local snacks, crafts, and specialties, offering a rich display of the unique charm of Three Kingdoms culture and Sichuan’s local customs.

Jinli Street’s main thoroughfare primarily sells Sichuan crafts, and further along, two side streets branch off. The left side is a snack street for food enthusiasts, while the right side is dominated by bars and inns. Stores offer items such as chopsticks, tea, lanterns, silk quilts, and local specialties.

Additionally, numerous folk artisans set up stalls, showcasing skills like paper cutting, shadow play, clay figurine crafting, sugar painting, and egg carving. For those looking for souvenirs, many shops sell crafts featuring pandas and Three Kingdoms themes, providing a diverse range of options at more affordable prices compared to Kuanzhai Alley.

In the evening, Jinli Street comes to life with hanging red lanterns, and the entire ancient street is filled with the melodies of folk music.

P.S. Although somewhat commercialized, Jinli Street offers convenient dining, entertainment, and shopping options. Tourists can leisurely spend half a day here after visiting Wuhou Temple, avoiding the hassle of traveling elsewhere.

🎫Admission ticket: free
🚗How to get there: Take Bus 1, G97, 57, 77, 81, 334, 335, and get off at Wu Hou Ci (Wuhou Temple) Station

5. Du Fu Thatched Cottage (杜甫草堂博物馆)

Du Fu Thatched Cottage is the former residence of Du Fu, a renowned poet from the Tang Dynasty in China. During his nearly four-year stay in Chengdu, Du Fu composed over a hundred poems in this dwelling, which is regarded as a “sacred place” in Chinese literary history. The Thatched Cottage has preserved the architectural layout from two renovations during the Ming and Qing dynasties.

Compared to the bustling crowds at Wuhou Temple, Du Fu Thatched Cottage attracts fewer visitors, and I personally prefer it due to its ambiance reminiscent of Jiangnan gardens.

Entering from the north gate, visitors are greeted by extensive bamboo groves, a common sight in Chengdu. Following the signs, one can explore while walking along the designated path. The first notable spot is the reconstructed Thatched Cottage where Du Fu resided—a thatched house representing the humble conditions he likely endured. Inside, there are rooms such as Du Fu’s study, bedroom, and kitchen.

Continuing clockwise leads to the Flowery Path and the Hall of Odes. The Wanfo Pagoda, with four levels, offers a panoramic view of the lush surroundings of the cottage when standing on top.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 50
⏰Opening hours: 09:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take bus 35, 58, 82, 151, 165, 170, 1024, or g74, and get off at the North Gate of Dufu Caotang (Thatched Cottage of Du Fu) station.

6. People’s Park (人民公园)

People’s Park Chengdu, established in 1911, provides an immersive experience of authentic old Chengdu culture and is a favorite spot for locals to leisurely enjoy tea.

On sunny days, many elderly people choose to stroll, play chess, and chat with friends in the park. Some even arrange dance partners and perform square dances. The park features an artificial lake where people often row boats, attracting many visitors on weekends.

If the timing is right, you might catch the chrysanthemum exhibition, where the park is adorned with vibrant and uncommon chrysanthemum varieties.

Speaking of renowned tea houses in Chengdu, Heming Tea House (鹤鸣茶社) in People’s Park stands out. It’s one of the oldest traditional tea houses in Chengdu, with a history of over a hundred years. Despite its spacious setting, it’s often crowded. The arrangement of bamboo chairs and wooden tables is artfully done, and locals frequently gather here to drink tea, play cards, chat, and even take a nap. The tea selection is extensive, starting from around CNY 10, and free refills are available.

🎫Admission ticket: free
🚗How to get there: Take Metro Line 2 to People’s Park Station, Exit B.

7. Wenshu Monastery (文殊院)

Wenshu Monastery is a renowned Buddhist temple in western Sichuan with a long history dating back to the Sui Dynasty. The monastery houses numerous precious artifacts, and over ten thousand volumes of Buddhist scriptures and documents. While the number of tourists is not high, there are many sincere Buddhist practitioners.

Even for those who are not followers of Buddhism, a visit to this place is recommended to appreciate its architecture.

Wenshu Monastery showcases typical Qing Dynasty architectural style, constructed entirely of wood. The main structures include the Four Heavenly Kings Hall, Hall of Three Sages of the West, Mahavira Hall, Dharma Hall, and the Buddhist Texts Library along the central axis. Auxiliary buildings such as the bell tower, Buddha hall, and meditation rooms are situated on both sides.

Every day, numerous people come to offer incense and worship. The monastery doesn’t charge any admission fees and even provides three free incense sticks to each person, which can be obtained on the right side at the entrance.

Outside Wenshu Monastery, Wenshu Alley is a food street where you can find famous Chengdu snacks at more affordable prices compared to Jinli Street.

🎫Admission ticket: free
⏰Opening hours: 08:00-17:00
🚗How to get there: Take Metro Line 1 and get off at Wen Shu Yuan Station.

8. Sichuan Museum

Sichuan Museum, established in 1941, is a three-story building housing 15 exhibition halls. It treasures a vast collection of rare artifacts, narrating the extensive epic of Sichuan’s culture and history.

The first floor primarily features Han Dynasty pottery and stone art, showcasing the robust and simple stone carvings and clay sculptures of the Han Dynasty.

The second floor comprises the Gallery of Bronze Ware, Zhang Daqian’s Art Gallery, Chinese Painting and Calligraphy Gallery, and Gallery of Ceramics. Among these, Zhang Daqian’s Art Gallery stands out with an extensive collection of his paintings, particularly his imitations of Dunhuang murals, as well as landscape and flower-and-bird paintings with profound artistic conception.

The third floor includes areas like the Gallery of Tibetan Buddhism, Gallery of Buddha Statues from Wanfo Temple, and Gallery of Sichuan Crafts, mostly reflecting the folk customs of Sichuan. The Gallery of Buddha Statues from Wanfo Temple exhibits ancient stone Buddha statues unearthed from a submerged temple, many of which are incomplete, featuring only the bodies or heads of the Buddhas.

P.S. Explanatory guides are available in English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, etc.

🎫Admission ticket: free
⏰Opening hours: 9:00 – 21:00 in summer; 9:00 – 20:00 in winter, closed on Monday.
🚗How to get there: Take bus lines 35, 58, 82, 151, and 165 and get off at Songxianqiao.

9. Qingyang Palace (青羊宫)

Qingyang Palace, originally built during the Zhou Dynasty, stands as one of China’s renowned Taoist temples.

The temple incorporates various Taoist elements, venerating deities from Taoist beliefs. Although not large, Qingyang Palace boasts a symmetrical and solemn layout with six main halls along a central axis. The grand architecture, shaded by trees and surrounded by ancient woods, is truly worth exploring.

Inside Qingyang Palace, numerous Taoist priests can be found, distinguished by their long hair tied up on top of their heads with a hairpin, a characteristic shared by both male and female priests.

A notable feature in Qingyang Palace is a pair of black bronze goat sculptures placed in Sanqing Hall. According to tradition, the goat on the left is believed to transform into a servant boy of the Pure Emperor and possesses the ability to cure various ailments. One simply needs to touch the corresponding part of the goat’s body that corresponds to their ailment to alleviate it.

Wandering through Qingyang Palace, visitors will encounter locals and tourists drinking tea and playing Mahjong at the temple’s teahouse.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 10
⏰Opening hours: 08:00 – 17:30
🚗How to get there: Take metro line 5 and get off at Qingyang Palace Station, Exit C or D.

10. Jinsha Site Museum (金沙遗址博物馆)

Jinsha Site Museum is an archaeological site representing the ancient Shu culture during the Shang and Zhou periods, with a history dating back approximately 3,200 to 2,600 years.

The site has yielded over 6,000 precious artifacts, including gold objects, jade artifacts, bronze wares, stone tools, lacquerware, along with tens of thousands of pottery fragments, tons of ivory, and thousands of wild boar tusks and deer antlers. It is considered the most abundant site globally in terms of gold and jade artifacts and the most densely concentrated in ivory during the same historical period.

A sincere recommendation is to visit the Exhibition Hall first and then explore the Relics Hall.

The Exhibition Hall showcases excavated artifacts, providing a more engaging experience, while the Relics Hall, situated at the excavation site of large-scale sacrificial activities, allows visitors to experience the archaeological process, which may take more time.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 70
⏰Opening hours: 09:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take metro line 2 and get off at Yipintianxia Station, Exit B.

11. Tianfu Square (天府广场)

Tianfu Square is located in the geographical center of Chengdu, and features a distinctive sunken design. During significant events in Chengdu, the square is adorned with flowers and various beautiful decorations.

The square is easily accessible, surrounded by notable landmarks such as Chengdu Museum, Sichuan Science & Technology Museum, Sichuan Library, Sichuan Art Museum, Sichuan Theater, big shopping malls, and more.

The underground floor hosts numerous shops and restaurants, providing convenient connectivity to various destinations without the need to cross roads at street level.

🚗How to get there: Take metro line 1 or line 2, and get off at the Tianfu Square Station.

12. Chunxi Road (春熙路)

Chunxi Road is one of Chengdu’s oldest commercial streets, still bustling and vibrant today, not far from the renowned Taikoo Li. It is a must-visit landmark for visitors.

While Chunxi Road may not boast as many luxury brands as Taikoo Li, it features numerous well-known brands with excellent value for money. Additionally, it proudly preserves some of China’s time-honored establishments, serving as a hallmark of Chunxi Road.

The food options are diverse, ranging from spicy hot pot, stinky tofu, to skewers and more. Convenient transportation options include dedicated vehicles to popular destinations like Kuanzhai Alley and the Panda Base.

One of the most famous attractions on Chunxi Road is the adorable panda climbing the wall on the IFC building, which has become a popular spot for social media check-ins.

🚗How to get there: Take metro line 2 or line 3 and get off at Chunxi Road.

13. Taikoo Li Chengdu

Taikoo Li Chengdu is a fashionable architectural complex adjacent to Chunxi Road. The entire area consists of two-story low-rise buildings, interconnected by various alleys. The unique architectural style combines traditional Chinese design with modern floor-to-ceiling glass walls, creating a distinctive and memorable atmosphere.

The fashionable crowd bustling through the area enhances the scenic beauty of Taikoo Li, transforming it into a photography hotspot where one can effortlessly capture stunning scenes.

Despite merging Chinese traditions with Western fashion elements, the interiors of these dwellings are no longer traditional teahouses and eateries. Instead, you’ll find bars, upscale restaurants, renowned watch and fashion brands, and cosmetics. Taikoo Li has become a symbol of luxury, style, and indulgence in Chengdu.

Beyond exploring fashionable luxury brands, Taikoo Li is an excellent venue for exhibitions, featuring displays from renowned names like GUCCI, Chanel, YSL, and many more, with the added bonus that most exhibitions are free of charge!

🚗How to get there: Take metro line 2 or line 3 and get off at Chunxi Road.

14. Sanxingdui Museum (三星堆博物馆)

Sanxingdui Museum showcases the archaeological sites from the Bronze Age in the southwest region. The museum is divided into the Comprehensive Hall (Exhibition Hall One) and the Bronze Hall (Exhibition Hall Two).

Exhibition Hall One exhibits artifacts such as vessels, decorations, pendants, and sacrificial items used by ancient people. The hall features the renowned 396-centimeter-tall Bronze Holy Tree, currently the world’s largest bronze artifact. The base of the tree features a unique dragon with the dragon’s head facing downward and the body leaning against the tree. The tree’s nine branches hold nine sacred birds and 27 fruits. Notably, the top of the divine tree is damaged and unrepaired, and the exact nature of the missing top remains uncertain.

The essence of Sanxingdui’s exhibition lies in the Bronze Hall. Here, the famous Bronze Figures are displayed, and even if you haven’t visited Sanxingdui, you’re likely familiar with these iconic gold masks.

The colossal Gold Mask served as a ceremonial offering, suspended in temples for worship. The Bronze Crowned Mask with Protruding Eyes is believed to represent the legendary Thousand-Mile Eye and Wind-Aided Ear.

Among the bronze figures unearthed at Sanxingdui, only four have faces adorned with gold foil. The gold, after being beaten thin, was mixed with raw lacquer and lime and applied to the bronze artifacts. The distinctive appearance of these bronze humanoid figures sets them apart from any other regional representations, leading some to speculate that they may belong to a different race from another world.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 72
⏰Opening hours: 08:30 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take a direct tourist bus at Kuanzhai Alley, Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda, Wuhou Temple or Chunxi Road to the museum directly.

15. Shufeng Yayun Opera House Chengdu

Chengdu offers various venues to experience Sichuan Opera performances, but for an authentic and comprehensive cultural experience, Shufeng Yayun Opera House Chengdu is a must-visit.

Described as a cultural package, the show is diverse and rich. Upon entering the theater, attendees are guided to their seats by servers dressed in traditional Sichuan attire. Each table, adorned with five or six bamboo chairs, features covered tea bowls and melon seeds. Attentive servers continually circulate, promptly refilling water from long-spouted teapots.

The 90-minute performance encompasses excerpts of Sichuan Opera, shadow play, puppetry, rolling light, and a spectacular finale featuring face-changing and fire-spitting acts. The show is highly entertaining and well worth watching.

Even on regular days, the theater is packed with an engaged audience, and the corridors on both sides are lively. Skilled artisans stand along the corridor, offering ear cleaning and massage services.

The theater even provides a service to shuttle spectators back to their hotels. Reflecting on the cultural package, attendees find it worthwhile despite the relatively high ticket prices.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 150
⏰Opening hours: 09:00 – 21:30
🚗How to get there: Take metro line 2 and get off at Tonghuimen Station.

👉 Book Your Sichuan Culture Opera Show on VIATOR

16. Sichuan Cuisine Museum

Sichuan Cuisine Museum, located in Gucheng Town, Pixian County, houses thousands of exhibits, making it the world’s only museum dedicated to the cultural heritage of a culinary tradition.

Before visiting, I was surprised to hear about the Sichuan Cuisine Museum – a museum dedicated to food! However, upon visiting, I found that exploring things related to cuisine was indeed a unique and captivating experience, markedly different from other museums.

Visitors can actively participate in making traditional snacks, don chef’s attire, and learn to cook Sichuan dishes alongside professional chefs. The chefs showcase their knife skills and prepare dishes like Kung Pao Chicken on-site. The most exciting part is that it’s not just a museum; it’s a place where you can freely sample classic Sichuan snacks.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 60 (CNY 360 for cooking class)
⏰Opening hours: 09:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take the bus 727, P22, P23, P50 and get off at Gucheng bus stop.

👉 Book Your Courtyard Cooking Class on VIATOR

17. Discover Chengdu’s Nightlife

Chengdu has a vibrant and diverse bar scene that caters to a wide range of tastes.

Lan Kwai Fong (LKF):

If you’re coming to Chengdu for the first time and want to explore the nightlife, I recommend checking out Lan Kwai Fong (LKF). The bars here are concentrated, catering to various nightlife enthusiasts. Whether you want to dance, listen to music, or enjoy some snacks, you can find what you’re looking for here. Among the numerous bars in Lan Kwai Fong, CC Bar and Venus Bar are good choices. Of course, the expenses in Lan Kwai Fong are on the higher side.

Jiuyan Bridge (Jiuyanqiao):

The Jiuyan Bridge area, marked by the iconic Anshun Gallery Bridge, has become a representative spot for Chengdu’s nightlife. Here, you not only have the night view of the bridge but also numerous bars scattered around. There are over a hundred bars on the streets, most of them with open-air seating. The nights are lively, and you can choose a cozy place with reasonable drink prices to enjoy wine while appreciating the riverside scenery.

Tong Zi Lin:

As a gathering place for Chengdu’s wealthy, Tong Zi Lin has some of the highest housing prices in Chengdu. The bars here mainly focus on stylish whiskies, red wines, and craft beers. Each bar has put effort into its interior design, with unique features. For example, Sunset Avenue Whisky Bar, inns·LiveHouse, Mr. Beer, and Flipped Whiskey & Cocktail Bar, all offer distinct atmospheres.

18. Baoguang Temple (宝光寺)

Baoguang Temple is a serene temple with vibrant local worship, especially on the first and fifteenth days of the lunar month and during festive occasions.

When visiting Baoguang Temple, besides offering incense for blessings, it’s essential to appreciate the leaning pagoda and the Hall of Arhats.

The treasure of Baoguang Temple is the Sarira Pagoda, which slightly leans westward. Inside the pagoda, there are 140 Buddhist statues made of copper, stone, jade, etc. Legend has it that during an ancient earthquake, the pagoda was on the verge of collapsing. Buddhist devotees risked their lives to protect it, moving the heavenly emperor, who then sent four gods of the same height as the pagoda to support it from all sides.

The Hall of Arhats is a significant area in Baoguang Temple, housing 518 statues of arhats, making it the longest and largest among all the Arhat halls in China. It is said that when entering, if you step in with your left foot first, start counting from the left side, and if your right foot enters first, start counting from the right side. Counting up to the age corresponding to a specific arhat is believed to reveal insights into one’s destiny in this life.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 5
⏰Opening hours: 08:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take bus X40 or X08, and get off at Baoguangsi Station.

19. Huanglongxi Ancient Town (黄龙溪古镇)

Huanglongxi Ancient Town is located in the southwest of Shuangliu District, Chengdu, with a history of over 1700 years and approximately 40 kilometers from the city center. It serves as a convenient destination for both locals and tourists, bustling with activity in the summer and more tranquil during the winter.

Similar to other commercial ancient towns, lively shops line the streets, offering a variety of local delicacies, ethnic clothing, and specialty products. The town is expansive, featuring alleyways that lead to hidden gems – red-walled courtyards, vibrant green bamboo, and sparsely populated wooden corridors and pavilions.

Unlike newly constructed imitation ancient streets, the genuine old streets here are narrower, with smaller storefronts exuding a more authentic historical ambiance.

Apart from tourists, the town is predominantly occupied by local residents. As the day turns into night, many shopkeepers begin to close their stores. The old-style doors, assembled piece by piece with wooden boards, evoke a sense of times past. As the crowds disperse, the ancient town gradually settles into a serene ambiance, revealing its authentic charm.

🎫Admission ticket: free
🚗How to get there: Take the bus from Xinnanmen Bus Station, Chadianzi Bus Station, or East Railway Station Bus Station to Huanglongxi.

🌼 Top Must-Visit Places Around Chengdu

20. Dujiangyan Irrigation System (都江堰)

Dujiangyan City is the county-level city of Chengdu. It is famed for Dujiangyan Irrigation System, which is located in the west of Dujiangyan City sitting on the Ming River. Built over 2,000 years ago, it still functions today and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Explore the main structure of the Dujiangyan Irrigation System, which includes the dam designed to divert water from the Minjiang River without a dam. The system was built over 2,000 years ago and is a testament to ancient Chinese engineering.

Fish Mouth Water-Releasing Ceremony: Witness the traditional Fish Mouth Water-Releasing Ceremony, which occurs during special occasions. It involves opening the fish mouth-shaped sluice gate to release water, symbolizing the beginning of the irrigation season.

Feishayan: An innovative part of the system designed to remove sediments from the water, preventing the riverbed from silting up.

Anlan Cable Bridge: Cross the Anlan Cable Bridge to get a unique perspective of the Dujiangyan Irrigation System and the surrounding area. The bridge provides panoramic views of the Min River and the irrigation infrastructure.

Erwang Temple: Stand on the mountain adjacent to the right bank of the Minjiang River. The temple is dedicated to the two ancient Chinese kings, Fubo and his son, who were instrumental in the construction of the irrigation system.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 80
⏰Opening hours: 08:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take a direct tourist bus from Kuanzhai Alley, Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda, Wuhou Temple, or Chunxi Road to the scenic spot directly, taking CNY 29-39 and 2.5 hours

👉 Book Mount Qingcheng and Dujiangyan Tour on VIATOR

21. Mount Qingcheng (青城山)

Mount Qingcheng, located in the Dujiangyan City area of Sichuan Province, is one of the most famous Taoist mountains in the country.

Visit the Front Mountain area, which is the lower part of Mount Qingcheng. Explore the temples, pavilions, and cultural sites, including the Jianfu Palace and the Shangqing Palace. Shangqing Palace is a significant Taoist temple complex, which is dedicated to Laozi, the founder of Taoism. Marvel at the ancient architecture, intricate carvings, and serene surroundings.

For a more challenging hike, head to the Back Mountain area. Here, you’ll find the Tianshi Cave (Heavenly Master Cave), which is a key Taoist site with ancient chambers, statues, and inscriptions. The cave complex is an important pilgrimage site for Taoist practitioners.

Enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains from Laojun Pavilion. This pavilion is dedicated to Laozi, the founder of Taoism, and provides a tranquil setting for reflection.

Adjacent to Mount Qingcheng, Shangqing Ancient Town features traditional architecture, ancient streets, and local crafts.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 50
⏰Opening hours: 08:00 – 18:00
🚗How to get there: Take bus no.101 from Dujiangyan Scenic Area to Mt. Qingcheng.

22. Leshan Giant Buddha (乐山大佛)

The Leshan Giant Buddha, located in Leshan City, Sichuan Province, is the largest stone Buddha statue in the world.

Viewing the Giant Buddha: The main attraction is, of course, the Giant Buddha itself. Take some time to admire the colossal statue carved into the cliffs at the confluence of the Minjiang, Dadu, and Qingyi rivers. The Buddha stands at about 71 meters (233 feet) tall and is an awe-inspiring sight.

Climbing to the Top: For a unique perspective of the Giant Buddha and the surrounding area, climb to the top of the hill on which it is situated. There are staircases and pathways that lead to the summit, providing panoramic views.

Wuyou Temple: Explore the Wuyou Temple, located at the foot of the cliff, which is dedicated to the Giant Buddha. The temple complex features various halls, courtyards, and religious artifacts.

Lingyun Temple: Visit Lingyun Temple, another Buddhist temple situated near the Giant Buddha. It houses a large hall with various Buddha statues and artifacts.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 80
⏰Opening hours: 09:00-16:50
🚗How to get there: Take the Chengdu-Leshan-Emeishan Intercity High-Speed Train to Leshan Railway Station, then transfer to bus 3 for this location.

👉 Book the Leshan Giant Buddha Tour on VIATOR

23. Four Girls Mountain (四姑娘山)

Four Girls Mountain, the highest peak on the eastern edge of the Hengduan Mountains and the Qionglai Range, is composed of four continuous peaks with heights ranging from 6250 meters to 5355 meters from north to south. The high altitude may lead to altitude sickness. These four peaks are perennially covered in ice and snow, resembling four maidens veiled in white.

The mountain has three main valleys: Changping Valley, Double Bridges Valley (Shuangqiao Valley), and Haizi Valley.

Among them, Double Bridges Valley is the most developed, and the entire journey can be toured by sightseeing car, typically taking half a day to complete. Major attractions in Double Bridges Valley include the redwood forest, forest drift, and the driftwood beach. You can also enjoy views of more than a dozen snow-capped mountains above 4,000 meters.

Changping Valley is mainly composed of forests, canyons, and snow-capped mountains on the canyon tops, offering breathtaking scenery. It is suitable for beginners in hiking, with moderate intensity. The first part of Changping Valley requires a sightseeing car, and the latter part can be done on horseback or on foot, taking at least a day.

Haizi Valley is the least developed of the three, with no sightseeing cars. The entire journey is done on horseback or on foot. The first half is dominated by alpine meadows, providing the best views of Four Girls Mountain and being the preferred location for photography enthusiasts. The second half of Haizi Valley focuses on alpine lakes, but due to the long distance, most visitors cannot reach this area, making it a favorite among true hiking enthusiasts.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 70 for Changping Valley/ CNY 80 for Shuangqiao Valley / CNY 60 for Changping Valley
⏰Opening hours: 8:00-16:00
🚗How to get there: Take a bus from Chengdu West Gate Bus Station to Rilong Town.

👉 Book Four Girls Mountain Tour on VIATOR

24. Mount Emei (峨眉山)

Mount Emei, located in Sichuan Province, is one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is known for its natural beauty, diverse flora and fauna, and cultural significance.

The Golden Summit (Jinding) is the highest peak of Mount Emei and offers breathtaking panoramic views. It is home to the famous golden statue of the Samantabhadra Bodhisattva, which is a major attraction. Enjoy sunrise and sunset views from this elevated vantage point. You can reach the summit by hiking or taking a cable car.

Explore Wannian Temple, one of the oldest temples on Mount Emei. The temple is known for its ancient architecture, beautiful gardens, and the Puxian Bodhisattva statue.

If you enjoy trekking, consider hiking to Leidongping, which is about halfway up Mount Emei. From here, you can take a cable car to the Golden Summit or continue hiking.

Qingyin Pavilion, known for its serene surroundings and the sound of the flowing water. It’s a peaceful spot to rest and reflect, and you may encounter monks chanting in the pavilion.

Keep an eye out for the wild monkeys that inhabit certain areas of Mount Emei. While they can be entertaining to watch, be cautious and avoid feeding them.

Explore the Elephant Bathing Pool, a natural pool formed by a waterfall. The pool is believed to be the place where Samantabhadra Bodhisattva purified himself before preaching Buddhism.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 160
⏰Opening hours: 06:00 – 18:30
🚗How to get there: Take a Chengdu-Leshan-Emeishan Intercity High-Speed Train to Emeishan Station, then transfer to a tourism bus for this location.

👉 Book the Mount Emei Tour on VIATOR

25. Xiling Snow Mountain (西山雪岭)

Situated in Dayi County, approximately 95 kilometers (59 miles) from Chengdu’s urban area, Xiling Snow Mountain boasts a perpetually snow-covered mountaintop. With an elevation of 5,346 meters above sea level, it stands as the highest peak in the Chengdu region.

Xiling Snow Mountain is divided into the front mountain and the back mountain, with the term “Xiling Snow Mountain” typically referring to the back mountain. Visitors must take the cable car to the ski resort on the back mountain.

Renowned for its exceptional ski resorts, Xiling Snow Mountain is a prime destination for skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts. The mountain offers a variety of slopes catering to different skill levels, ranging from beginners to advanced skiers. In addition to the ski resorts, the scenic area also features over 10 winter activities, including snowmobiling and dog sledding.

Yin Yang Boundary is a narrow and elongated ridge within the Xiling Snow Mountain scenic area. Serving as the connection between the Front and Back Mountains, it also marks the boundary between the Sichuan Basin and the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. On clear days, visitors can witness different scenes on either side of the ridge, with one side displaying a clear, expansive sky and the other shrouded in mist and clouds.

To complete the experience, visitors can relax at one of the hot springs in the area. Some resorts on Xiling Snow Mountain offer natural hot springs where guests can unwind and enjoy the therapeutic benefits.

🎫Admission ticket: CNY 120
⏰Opening hours: 09:00-17:30
🚗How to get there: Take buses from Xinnanmen Bus Station, Chadianzi Bus Station, or East City Bus Station to Xiling Xueshan (Xiling Snow Mountain).

👉 Book Xiling Snow Mountain Tour on VIATOR

😋 Where to Eat in Chengdu

Chengdu’s vibrant culinary scene guarantees that the surviving eateries are anything but disappointing. Let’s explore some of the popular food destinations in the city.

Jianshe Road:

Recognized as Chengdu’s largest snack street, Jianshe Road is a diverse hub of authentic snacks, attracting many tourists.

Wangping Street:

Wangping Street, with its refined ambiance and numerous small bars and artistic night market stalls, is home to historic hotpot and skewer restaurants. Despite its short alleys, the area has a unique charm. While exploring Wangping Street, visitors can also enjoy the nearby food street.

Chunxi Road – Sansheng Street/Tangba Street:

Chunxi Road, a popular first stop for out-of-town visitors, boasts a lively food night market in the evenings and numerous snack stalls throughout the year. While the night market snacks may seem ordinary, adjacent streets like Sansheng Street, Tangba Street, and Longwang Temple Street offer a more authentic culinary experience with numerous old eateries.

Kuixinglou Street:

Near Kuanzhai Alley, Kuixinglou Street, Jixiang Street, Xiaotong Alley, Paotongshu Street, etc., are frequented by locals. Kuixinglou Street and Jixiang Street offer a variety of snacks and a lively atmosphere with a lower chance of disappointment. Xiaotong Alley and Paotongshu Street have a more sophisticated ambiance with many small bars and local eateries.

Xi’an Road:

In proximity to Kuanzhai Alley, Xi’an Road is a common spot for locals, hosting numerous large restaurants and frequently visited by Chengdu residents.


Jinli, a retro pedestrian street, is a must-visit for tourists. While the street’s culinary offerings might be average, the surrounding small shops compensate for it. Tibetan cuisine is relatively scarce in the area.

Yulin Road:

Yulin Road boasts many old establishments and numerous small bars, exuding the traditional taste of old Chengdu. Whether as a scenic spot or a culinary destination, it’s worth a visit.

🛫 How Do I Travel to Chengdu

By Plane

Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport (CTU): This is Chengdu’s older airport, located relatively close to the city center with convenient transportation. It serves numerous domestic destinations, including flights to Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Lhasa, Shanghai, and Hangzhou.

Chengdu Tianfu International Airport: This is Chengdu’s new airport with grander architecture. Situated in Jianyang, a district under Chengdu’s jurisdiction, it is farther from the city center but is connected by Metro Line 18. Currently, it handles some of the routes previously served by Shuangliu Airport, such as flights to Tianjin, Kunming, Guangzhou, and Xiamen.

The newly opened Chengdu Metro Line 19 provides a convenient 30-minute connection between the two major airports, offering improved accessibility.

By Train

Chengdu has four railway stations: Chengdu Railway Station, Chengdu East Railway Station, Chengdu West Railway Station, and Chengdu South Railway Station.

Chengdu Railway Station: As one of the largest passenger transport terminals in southwest China, this station operates regular trains to major cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Kunming, and Guilin, as well as some high-speed trains to cities such as Shanghai, Wuhan, Chongqing, and Dujiangyan.

Chengdu East Railway Station: Primarily serving regions like Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan, Lanzhou, Xi’an, Chongqing, Guiyang, and Kunming.

Chengdu West Railway Station: Serves as the starting point for the Sichuan-Tibet Railway.

🚖 How to Get Around Chengdu

  • 🚇 Metro: Fares range from CNY 2 to 7, making it the preferred choice for intra-city travel in Chengdu due to its convenience and speed.
  • 🚗 Taxi: Daytime starting fare is CNY 9, and it’s CNY 10 at night.
  • 🚌 Public Bus: A flat fare of CNY 2, but not recommended during rush hours due to heavy traffic.
  • 🚴 Bike Sharing: Chengdu has a variety of bike-sharing options, making it a convenient choice for short-distance travel.

☀️ Best Time to Visit Chengdu

Chengdu has a subtropical climate with distinct seasons. Here’s a brief overview:

Spring (March to May): Spring is a good time to visit Chengdu when the temperatures are mild, and the city is in full bloom with pear blossoms, peach blossoms and more. The weather is generally pleasant, and it’s a great time for outdoor activities.

Summer (June to August): Chengdu’s summer is hot and humid, with occasional heavy rain. Temperatures can soar, and the humidity can be uncomfortable. However, if you can tolerate the heat, summer is also the best time to explore the nearby Dujiangyan, Mount Qingcheng and Huanglong Valley.

Autumn (September to November): Autumn is considered one of the best times to visit Chengdu. The temperatures are moderate, and the weather is generally dry. It’s a great time to explore the city and its surrounding attractions.

Winter (December to February): Winter is the coldest season, but temperatures rarely drop below freezing. It’s a good time to visit if you prefer cooler weather, and you can connect your trip to explore the nearby Xiling Snow Mountain, which is a great destination for enjoying snowy landscapes.

🏨 Where to Stay in Chengdu

Hotel choices, of course, start with Chunxi Road – Taikoo Li, followed by Kuanzhai Alley, Jinli – Wuhou Temple, and Jiuyanqiao.

Chunxi Road – Taikoo Li:

This is the top choice for many tourists visiting Chengdu. It’s ideal because of its proximity to Chengdu’s classic must-visit attractions such as Jinli, Wuhou Temple, Wenshu Monastery, museums, and more. The area is also rich in diverse culinary experiences, offering hotpot, skewers, spicy dishes, iced desserts, various street foods, small taverns, and coffee shops. Moreover, there’s a wide range of hotels with guaranteed quality, providing a diverse selection of accommodation.

Kuanzhai Alley:

Compared to Taikoo Li, hotels in Kuanzhai Alley are more grounded and carry a stronger Chengdu flavor. While there are a few inns within the scenic area, they are not highly recommended due to relatively lower cost-effectiveness. Within 500 meters of Kuanzhai Alley is the food street, Kuan Xinglou Street, offering numerous local snacks. There are also some private kitchens and coffee shops in the vicinity, as well as Xi’an Road just a street away from Kuanzhai Alley, providing many dining options, including hotpot and skewer restaurants.

Wuhou Temple + Jinli:

Wuhou Temple and Jinli are separated by one wall. There aren’t many hotels in this business district, and the better ones are quite old, so staying in this area may not be the most cost-effective choice. However, some guesthouses do offer reasonable value for money.


Jiuyanqiao is Chengdu’s bar street, offering a vibrant nightlife with plenty of options for bars, eateries, and roadside barbecue stalls. The area features a bridge that looks beautiful when lit up at night. Many hotels and guesthouses in this district offer rooms with a river view.

The Temple House

The Temple House
⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 | 🤑 Cost: from $285 USD | 🏩 View on Trip | Photos: Booking

The Temple House in Chengdu has consistently been a top choice among luxury hotels and ranks as one of the most expensive in the city.

Situated in the bustling commercial district of Chengdu Tai Koo Li, the hotel boasts a blend of Eastern and Western styles, with a minimalist and modern aesthetic combined with a touch of traditional Chinese Zen ambiance. The artistic atmosphere and upscale ambiance permeate every corner, featuring minimalist artworks and exquisite ceramics in the lounge.

The hotel comprises 142 rooms, including three types of Studio rooms, four types of suites, and a top-floor suite. Even the smallest room is spacious at 63 square meters, while the 90-square-meter Studio rooms, deluxe suites, and the Temple House Penthouse all come with private balconies.

All rooms follow a black-and-white theme, with straight-lined sofas and unadorned walls that harmonize with the colors of Tai Koo Li outside. The hotel amenities feature the new herbal collection from the British brand Bamford.

With three restaurants and a bar, guests have a variety of dining options. For a taste of Chinese cuisine, Mi Xun Teahouse offers an elegant setting with a Zen vibe, serving exquisite Sichuan vegetarian dishes and teas from various regions. For dinner, guests can indulge in a well-rounded meal at the stylish Italian restaurant, TIVANO.

Niccolo Hotel

Niccolo Hotel
⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 | 🤑 Cost: from $161 USD | 🏩 View on Trip | Photos: Booking

Niccolo Hotel opened its doors in 2015 and is situated in the IFS (International Finance Square) on Chunxi Road, surrounded by top-tier brands. The famous wall-climbing panda, a Chengdu landmark, can be found here, accessible directly from the 7th floor of the hotel.

The hotel boasts exceptional design features, including various art installations in the lobby, modern-style artworks, and displays of modern, fashionable suits and elegant dresses made from Chinese porcelain tiles.

With a total of 238 rooms, starting from 40 square meters for basic rooms and 110 square meters for suites, the hotel emphasizes a natural color palette of subtle and chic style using natural fabrics and leather products. The spacious windows provide ample natural light and expansive views. The bathrooms are generously sized, featuring Lorenzo Villoresi toiletries, and guests are welcomed with a complimentary bottle of wine. The overall service is thoughtful and attentive.

The Niccolo Restaurant includes Niccolo Kitchen, offering a semi-buffet breakfast with a wide selection of Chinese and Western options from 6:30 to 10:30, Yue Hin, a Chinese restaurant, The Tea Lounge, known for its popular afternoon tea, and The Bar, renowned for classic cocktails and delicious snacks.


⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 | 🤑 Cost: from $72 USD | 🏩 View on Trip | Photos: Trip

The hotel provides a panoramic view of IFS and Taikoo Li, with a distant view of the 339 TV Tower. The overall decor of the hotel features a futuristic dark style, and the lobby’s black, red, and gold environment gives the entire space an artistic flair.

The rooms are designed as duplex apartments, and upon opening the door, you are greeted with a wall of car models. The room is equipped with smart controls for the entire space. The first floor includes a kitchen, living room, and bathroom. Additional amenities include a capsule coffee machine, Siemens built-in oven, Harman Kardon sound system, and more. All hotel rooms have full-length windows, providing a transparent view of the cityscape, allowing guests to experience Chengdu’s bustling streets. There is also a bathtub by the window, offering a panoramic view of Chengdu while soaking.

While it’s an apartment-style hotel, the service is on par with star-rated hotels. After completing the check-in process, a dedicated butler will guide guests to their rooms. From entering the elevator to the room, guests can message the butler anytime for any needs, and they will be accommodated with thoughtful and considerate arrangements.

Wadang Washe Traveling Hotel

Wadang Washe Traveling Hotel
⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 | 🤑 Cost: from $53 USD | 🏩 View on Trip | Photos: Booking

Wadang Washe Traveling Hotel is a uniquely distinctive establishment housed in a building dating back to the early 1990s, originally an old office building.

The designer has preserved the architectural details of the old house to the maximum extent, integrating decoration and materials using primarily wood, steel, and plain cement. A significant amount of locally sourced native materials, both practical and natural, are used. The hotel extensively incorporates recycled old wooden boards as decorations, creating an atmosphere reminiscent of a treehouse hotel in a tropical rainforest.

Each room is unique, featuring a trendy deep black in an overall understated design, with white accents. The design rejects complex and exaggerated embellishments, discarding unnecessary settings rarely used in rooms, retaining only the essential amenities that provide a sense of relaxation. Despite the minimalist theme, there is no compromise on hardware standards.

The hotel’s ground floor includes not only a restaurant but also a bar and a music venue. Regularly hosting various events, the hotel fosters a strong sense of community and offers its own recommended itinerary for exploring Chengdu.

Chengdu Blue City Yuexing Hot Spring &Food Hotel

Chengdu Blue City Yuexing Hot Spring &Food Hotel
⭐️ Rating: 4.8/5 | 🤑 Cost: from $41 USD | 🏩 View on Trip | Photos: Trip

The hotel is adjacent to Kuanzhai Alley, with a straight-line distance of only 600 meters. In the surrounding area, there are various food streets, alleys, and countless culinary delights.

The exterior of the hotel follows the architectural style of traditional houses in western Sichuan. The archway features a typical Chinese structure, adorned with golden dragons on the two wooden doors, reflecting a luxurious royal style. The front desk table is carved from a single piece of wood, and the lobby is adorned with traditional Chinese writing implements, presenting a simple and elegant decoration.

The overall decoration of the rooms embraces a minimalist style with a fusion of Chinese and Japanese elements. Throughout the room, including the washstand, traces of natural wood are visible on all the furniture. The tatami rooms exude a distinctly Japanese flair, featuring straw mats, cushions, and sliding doors.

Guests are required to change into cotton slippers on the first floor before heading upstairs, and each guest is provided with a storage locker for shoes. This significantly ensures the cleanliness of the guest rooms, and some areas in the corridor are also covered with straw mats. Visitors can change into the provided hot spring attire in their rooms and then enjoy a relaxing soak in the hotel’s hot spring facility.

🌸Final Tips on Traveling to Chengdu

  • When exploring Chengdu city, you don’t need to join guided tours. The most efficient way is to use the subway and either bike or use ride-hailing services, making it convenient to go anywhere.
  • Avoid taking unlicensed taxis near the airport and stations. The subway is affordable and gets you to the city center for just a few yuan; don’t trust taxi drivers recommending package deals.
  • In tourist spots, don’t take photos with enthusiastic cartoon characters; they charge CNY 10-20 per photo.
  • Be cautious of fortune tellers in Qingyang Palace; it’s advisable not to believe them.
  • Don’t buy local specialties in tourist areas; it’s recommended to purchase them in large supermarkets for better quality and lower prices.
  • Don’t excessively pursue popular trendy eateries; Chengdu, known for its culinary delights, might have delicious food right under residential areas.
  • Besides the Panda Base, consider Panda Valley in Dujiangyan. It has many pandas with fewer crowds, including freely roaming red pandas, providing a better touring experience.
  • Most museums in Chengdu, like the Sichuan Museum, Jinsha Site Museum, and Sanxingdui Museum, usually close on Mondays.
  • Be cautious with pedicab drivers in Chengdu; negotiate fares before agreeing to a ride.
  • Both Dujiangyan and Mount Qingcheng are outside the city center. If planning to visit, start early, book tickets in advance, and take a high-speed train directly to Dujiangyan/Mount Qingcheng; the fare is only CNY 10, and the journey takes about half an hour.
  • Ignore and reject requests from copper statue performers in Jinli and Kuanzhai Alley asking for photos.
  • Chengdu’s cuisine tends to be spicy, so non-spicy eaters should be cautious when ordering.

China Travel Planning Guide&FAQ

🎫Do I need a visa for China?

Yes. Most visitors to China will need a visa to enter the country. The type of visa you need will depend on the purpose and duration of your trip, as well as your nationality. If you are a resident of the US, you must apply for a Chinese visa at the Consular Office in the country. On the other hand, inhabitants of countries like Japan, Canada, and the UK can request a visa through the Chinese Visa Application Service Center.

🤔Why is it necessary to install a VPN in China?

In China, the government has strict regulations on internet access, leading to the blocking of popular websites and social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, and YouTube. To access these sites, a VPN is suggested as a means of bypassing the restrictions. It is important to choose a reputable VPN provider and use caution while doing so. ExpressVPN has been historically deemed the most reliable VPN for this purpose, despite being heavily targeted by China’s censors. Nevertheless, it is still a widely preferred option owing to its ease of installation and user-friendliness.

📲Is it necessary to have a Chinese SIM card while in China?

Yes. It is crucial to acknowledge that accessing the internet in China may pose limitations due to certain websites being prohibited or filtered. To ensure uninterrupted connectivity while staying in China, purchasing a local SIM card is advisable. For optimum results, acquiring SIM cards from either China Unicom or China Mobile is recommended. While China Mobile has the most comprehensive coverage in China and is a market leader, China Unicom is more compatible with foreign phones, enabling 3G and 4G services. Or you can purchase a SIM card online.

🔮Should I buy China travel insurance?

Yes. Although China is generally a safe country for travel, it is still possible to encounter accidents or other unexpected occurrences. Therefore, obtaining travel insurance can provide a sense of security and financial protection. In my research, I have found that World Nomads is a reputable travel insurance provider that covers a wide range of activities and is recommended for the average traveler. Nevertheless, I advise you to compare insurance quotes from various providers before making a decision.

🚙Can you rent a car in China?

Unfeasible. Obtaining a Chinese driver’s license to rent a car and self-drive may seem like an option, but it is not a practical choice for most foreigners. Therefore, many prefer to opt for a driver or public transportation when navigating China, as it proves to be more convenient.

✈️What’s the best site to purchase flight tickets for China?

I suggest using Trip for affordable flights to China. As a China-based company, they often offer lower prices compared to foreign companies. Additionally, they offer English-speaking phone support in case of any issues.

🏡What is the best way to book hotels in China?

Not only does Trip offer a wider range of flight options, but it also provides a greater selection of hotels to choose from. Moreover, Agoda is a reliable resource for hotels throughout Asia.

🎒What do I pack for China?

Travel adapter and converter: China uses a different electrical system than many other countries, so it’s important to bring a travel adapter and converter if you plan to use electronic devices such as phones, cameras, and laptops.  
Sunscreen: The UV index in China can be high, particularly during the summer months, and prolonged exposure to the sun without protection can cause skin damage and increase the risk of skin cancer.
Deodorant: It should be noted that finding deodorant in China may not be a simple task.

📚Can a guidebook for traveling to China be useful?

Yes. If you’re planning to travel to China for the first time, a travel guidebook can be a valuable resource, and Lonely Planet is one of the most reputable guides available globally. Its comprehensive itineraries and recommendations take into account your personal preferences and can save you both time and money. The insider tips are also extremely helpful in navigating China’s unique cultural landscape like a local.

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