China Weather and Climate

Geographical location

With over 1.35 billion inhabitants, China is the most populous country in the world and therefore has more inhabitants than all of Europe, all of North America and Russia combined.

The People’s Republic of China has a mainland area of ​​around 9.6 million square kilometers and borders on 14 states. This makes China the fourth largest country in the world in terms of area behind the USA, Canada and Russia.

The Chinese neighboring countries include Russia, North Korea, Afghanistan and India. Various natural borders separate the country from its neighboring countries.

The East China Sea, the South China Sea and the Yellow Sea represent the state borders in the east and south-east. In the north of China one finds deserts and steppes as well as in the northeast the rivers Amur and Ussuri as natural borders.

China’s highest point is Mount Everest with 8848 meters, which lies directly on the border area with Nepal. At over 6300 kilometers, the Yangtze River is the longest river in the People’s Republic.

Climate in China

From a scientific point of view, the huge country of China has up to 19 different climate zones. For the sake of simplicity, however, we limit ourselves to the four essential climatic areas for a basic orientation. The northeast, north and west of China is dominated by a continental climate with long and cold winter times. In summer, however, it gets hot and humid with strong influences from the summer monsoon.

With temperatures of around 30 ° C, the high humidity in summer sometimes creates an oppressive humid atmosphere. In the areas of the Taklamakan desert up to the capital Beijing a rather dry desert climate can be found. Large temperature fluctuations between day and night and extreme drought are characteristic of this area. In Beijing it usually only happens in between July and August have significant rainfall.

If you travel further east of China from Beijing, the monsoon influence becomes more and more evident. Cool, dry winters stand in contrast to the very hot summers with heavy monsoon rains and an often uncomfortable humidity. The humidity is quite low in winter, but very high in the monsoon season. Further to the southeast, the climate becomes subtropical.

The hot summers bring a lot of precipitation in this region, the nights cool down only imperceptibly. With up to 3000 millimeters of rain annually, the southeast is the wettest area in China. In central China, on the other hand, you will find high mountains with a cool mountain climate. In winter it gets icy cold and in summer it is moderately warm with a lot of sunshine.

Especially Tibet and the deserts in the center of China are extremely dry and only in exceptional cases record more than 150mm of rain throughout the year.

When to go to China

Due to the different climate zones, the best travel time for China cannot be generalized. Basically, you can visit the People’s Republic of China all year round, especially when you are traveling through several regions, you should prepare your clothing accordingly. If you also want to explore the subtropical regions of China, we recommend a travel time during the months of May to June or September and October.

Very little rainfall is to be expected during these times. This avoids the monsoon season, which is also characterized by cyclones and an uncomfortable sultriness. If you travel in the autumn months, you also avoid the tourist high season. During this recommended travel time to China, cities such as Beijing and Shanghai are also very pleasant to visit, while July and August are usually too hot.

A trip to Inner Mongolia (autonomous region of the People’s Republic of China) in autumn is also highly recommended. Here, travelers can expect blooming landscapes and a climate with little rain.

Optimal travel time for the regions

In the following overview you can see the best travel time depending on the region (China).

Place Best travel time
Wuhan May, July, August and September
Macau January, February, March, October, November and December
Kashgar May, June, July, August and September
Kunming March, April, May and June
Harbin June, July and August
Shanghai May, June and September
Beijing May, June and September
Haikou January, February, April, October, November and December

Temperatures, precipitation, sunshine in Wuhan (China)

Jan Feb March Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Daytime temperature 8 ° C 10 ° C 15 ° C 21 ° C 26 ° C 30 ° C 33 ° C 33 ° C 28 ° C 23 ° C 16 ° C 11 ° C
Night temperature -1 ° C 1 ° C 6 ° C 12 ° C 18 ° C 22 ° C 25 ° C 25 ° C 20 ° C 13 ° C 7 ° C 1 ° C
Precipitation in mm 35 59 103 140 162 210 156 119 76 63 51 31
Rainy days 7 8 11 12 12 11 9 7 7 8 6 6
Hours of sunshine 4 4 4 5 6 7 8 9 7 6 5 4
Sunrise 7:20 7:05 6:35 5:55 5:30 5:20 5:30 5:50 6:05 6:25 6:50 7:10
Sunset 17:45 18:10 18:30 18:50 19:10 19:25 19:25 19:05 18:30 17:50 17:25 17:25

Temperatures

The annual average temperature in Wuhan is 16.3 ° C. For comparison: Munich reaches an average of 8.6 ° C, in Berlin it is 9.6 ° C. The warmest month is July (28.8 ° C), coldest month of January with mean values of 3 ° C.

Precipitation

The annual precipitation is 1205 mm on 104 days with precipitation. For comparison: In Munich, 967 mm, in Berlin 570 mm, precipitation is measured annually. The June is considered the rainy season, since in this month are expected to more than 175 mm of rainfall. In the months of January, February and December snowfall is possible.

Sunshine

As our climate table shows, August is the sunniest month with an average of 8.8 hours of sunshine per day. In the annual mean, the sun shines an average of 5.7 hours per day. For comparison: In Munich and Berlin, the sun shines an average of 4.7 hours per day throughout the year.

Cities nearby

The following larger towns are nearby and have a similar climate: Ezhou, Huanggang, Xiaogan and Yingcheng.

Highlights and attractions

When traveling to China, the Great Wall of China should definitely be visited, the approximately 6350 kilometers long and largest structure in China is an absolute highlight. In Xian you will be amazed by the famous terracotta army. To see them in person is the dream of many travelers. Chengdu has the largest population of panda bears in the world, and the breeding station is very popular with visitors from all over the world.

Lijiang (UNESCO World Heritage Site), the pagodas of Dali and the stone forest of Kunming form a triangle that impressively embodies the original China and should therefore not be missing on any tour. The rice terraces of Guilin, the karst cone mountains and the Li River in the south of China are also worth a special recommendation. Meanwhile, a cruise through the gorges of the Yangtze promises real goose bumps.

To round off your impressions of the diverse China, it is also worth taking a look at the regions with “special status” in the People’s Republic. Tibet is known as the roof of the world, the magic in the highest mountains in the world should not be missed. The mega-metropolis Hong Kong, on the other hand, sets standards in a completely different way and fascinates with colorful markets and a sparkling skyline.

China Weather and Climate
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