Travelling in Sanya—City Guide
Acomfortable climate, pure and clean air, pristine blue seawater, golden soft beaches and as much seafood as you could ever want to eat… Located at the southernmost point of Hainan Island, Sanya
is famously known as the “Oriental Hawaii”. In Sanya, you may enjoy a carefree holiday, or try new exciting experiences like sailboarding, sea swimming, water skiing, etc. Dive into the ocean with foreign and local enthusiasts and admire the well-preserved submarine coral landforms. While you’re in Sanya, why not have a glass of coconut milk, go dive with the morning sun, share a seafood feast, or walk on the beach in the twilight with the receding waves? The charm of its southern scenery is sure to be unforgettable.
Between Mountains & Sea: Sanya the Beautiful
Surrounded by mountains on three sides and at the convergence point of two rivers, Sanya’s meandering coastline includes numerous fascinating bays. The urban charms of Sanya and its beautiful natural scenery seem like heavenly creations, offering a unique experience to tourists coming from afar. If you like the beach, you are sure to fall in love with Yalong Bay
. Its beach of fine and white sand stretches over 8 wide and flat kilometers, and its natural scenery is unparalleled. If you prefer the rainforest, then you shouldn’t miss out on the Yanoda Tropical Rainforest, which is a paradisiac rainforest reserve filled with exotic flowers and rare herbs, and is absolutely enchanting. You’ll find what you like in Sanya.
Don't Miss the Following Destinations in Sanya
Sunshine, beaches, waves, coconut groves… Many movies have been shot Yalong Bay
, known for its incredible landscape. Water is at the perfect temperature for swimming and many other exciting recreational events all year long. Limpid seawater, rare to the eye of northern city dwellers, is omnipresent here. Move 10 meters into the water and admire the wonderful sea scenery. In the Butterfly Gorge
, you’ll find thousands of brightly colored butterflies dancing dreamily with wind.
The fame of Tianya Haijiao
has widely spread through word of mouth, which is a characteristic printed on Chinese currency. The fragrance of coconuts floating around the trees, pure water washing on the white sand, an array of mysteriously shaped rocks… all form the classic seaside vista you’ll encounter in this magical place. On the bay beach stand natural stones of all shapes and sizes, among which a huge boulder has been engraved with the Chinese characters for “Tianya”, “Haijiao” and “One Pillar in the South”. For both domestic and foreign tourists, it is the perfect place for a group picture.
Reputed as “the no. 1 diving base in China”, Wuzhizhou Island
is widely loved by amateur snorkelers and diving enthusiasts. Under the limpid sea you’ll swim among boundless colorful reef ecosystems as countless tropical fishes swarm about you. It is an incredible visual experience that attracts an increasing number of sea-loving tourists everyday. It is worth mentioning that Wuzhizhou Island is located in Haitang Bay
: many people consider it a paradise, the perfect romantic destination to escape to. Thus the island was given the name “Lovers’ Island”, and it is no wonder that it is the no. 1 choice for vacationing lovers.
stands equal in stature to the Harbor City of Miami and the Dream Island of Dubai. It is surrounded by mountains on three sides, and by the sea all round. It thus boasts exceptional scenery in terms of mountains, sea and skies. Whether you’re looking for fun in the sea or sports on water, you’ll find it year-round in this amazing place.
When the winter comes in your city, as you’re wearing your cotton-padded jacket, the tropical Sanya
is still basking in the crimson heat of the sun, warming souls up. Needless to say, in the summer, these sunshiny beaches offer limitless landscapes. That is why Sanya has become one of the hottest resort destinations in China for vacationing.
It is situated along the 18th parallel north, famous for stringing some of the most beautiful places in the world. Hawaii, Mexico City, Bombay… all of these wonderful destinations stand on the same latitude as Sanya and its Clear Water Bay. Pure waters, white beaches, steep ridges and strange rocks make up a fantastic landscape. The scenery of reef rocks and sand is most praised by tourists.
“Whether you see me or not, I am here.” The love poem from If You Are the One 2 is moving and unforgettable; so is the place where this movie was shot—the Yalong Bay
Tropical Paradise Forest Park in Sanya, which attracts year after year thousands of tourists. Step on the film-featured Guojianglong Rope Bridge, walk across the river and shoot your own “movie poster” – an experience not to be missed!
Experience Living Amid Sea and Mountains
, the vacationland of China, is the perfect destination for luxury vacations in China as well as meetings, team building, weddings and honeymoons. From local folk dwellings to luxury hotels, from urban life to island life, you’ll find a variety of accommodations each promising a unique experience. No matter what type of traveller you are, your needs are sure to be satisfied.
All hotels in Sanya possess their own special features. If you’re staying for a relatively long time, you may even want to try a few different locations and enjoy their different charms. Yalong Bay
is a holiday resort where you’ll mostly find towering high-end, five-star hotels of different styles, representing the best of Sanya’s hotel industry. You’ll also find many hotels to your liking along Dadonghai Beach
, each with a perfect view on the sea. Meanwhile, you may also consider a vacation rental apartment, available in Sanya for a relatively low cost.
If you’re seeking the most authentic living experience in Sanya has to offer, the Intercontinental Hotel Group would be your wisest choice. A wide selection of accommodation including Intercontinental, Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn hotels & resorts awaits you in Sanya Bay
, Clear Water Bay
, Yalong Bay
, Haitang Bay
and any other major scenic area. If you’re looking to experience the unimaginable “feast under the sea”, you may want to head over to the Intercontinental Sanya Haitang Bay Resort
, where the specialty seafood restaurant “Tao” is widely reputed. As you dine, admire the wonders of the sea right next to you, and appreciate the incredible scenery the place’s ingenious design has brought into your view.
A Shopping Experience Unlike Any Other
You’ll find an incredible variety of special gifts, souvenirs, local products and specialties in Sanya
: pearl necklaces, coconut candies, coffee and yellow capsicum sauce, and all kinds of fresh and fragrant tropical fruits. Come treasure hunting for the perfect presents to bring back to your friends and loved ones.
There is another reason why real shoppers come to Sanya—the Sanya International Duty Free City
in Haitang Bay. Here you’ll find all the famous international brands of skin care products, cosmetics, handbags, jewelry and accessories, ready-to-wear clothing, etc. Come enjoy duty free prices without even leaving the country and shop ‘til you drop. If shopping constitutes a major part of your itinerary, then the Intercontinental Sanya Haitang Bay Resort
, located only a 5-minute walk away from the duty free shop, is obviously your best option.
Sanya produces tasty tropical fruits in great numbers all year long. If this is one of your interests, then the Hong Gang Marketplace
is probably your best destination. You’ll find coconuts for a few RMB a piece, as well as wonderfully fresh jackfruits, mangoes, papayas, durians, wax apples, bananas, litchis, guavas, dragon fruits, mangosteens, etc. All fruits here are sweet and fragrant, sure to please and satisfy the cravings of all fruit-loving travelers. Also praised by tourists are the marketplace’s specialty fruit juices and shaved ices.
A Unique Trip to the South for your Tasting Buds
, you’ll find all sorts of jumping-fresh seafood. Your eyes will be continually feasted by numerous shellfishes and fishes. If you wish to taste, the true, authentic way of appreciating these delicacies is to head to the reputed First Market to buy your ingredients, and then find one of the nearby shops that will cook it all up for you. Sanya’s sumptuous seafood feasts are without a doubt the most delicious experience you’ll take part in.
Other than seafood, you may also want to taste other famous Hainan specialties such as Baoluo noodles. Moreover, as Sanya neighbors Southeast Asia, you’ll find a great deal of Thai cuisine restaurants. Restaurants in Yalong Bay
enjoy a good reputation and are worth a try.
Although locals don’t like spicy food, you’ll find produced here the deliciously spicy and fresh, the unique: “yellow capsicum sauce”. Spice lovers should definitely try it. It’s the ideal gift for any of your spice-loving friends and family. Folk & Buddhist Culture
is known for its ancestral Hainanese culture, its unique architectural culture, its rich and colorful folk culture, as well as its later important tourist culture. Here, the Han majority converges with national minorities such as the Li, Miao and Hui people. Each has inherited and keeps on passing down a culture of its own. These varied cultures complement and permeate one another, bringing out the best in each other, thus forming the greater culture of Sanya.
Qiongzhou has long been known as the southern home of Guanyin. Looking at the East and West Mao Islands from the Nanshan mountain facade, one can see remains of this ancestral land of Buddhism. Other than the prestigious Guanyin of the South Sea
, the Nanshan Temple
, situated a half-hour-drive to the west of the Sanya Temple, is also a favored destination for devotees to pay their respect to Buddha. Its Tang-dynasty style and its location on the mountain facing the sea make it one of the few newly built large-scale Buddhist monasteries in China.
The 3rd day of the 3rd month in the lunar calendar is a traditional holiday for the Li and Miao ethnic minorities of Hainan. Every year, large-scale activities are held to celebrate the holiday in ethnic Li and Miao areas, such as the Wuzhi Mountain, Baoting County and Baisha Island. On that day, thousands of people dance, loudly whirling bamboo poles around. Folk songs resound at thematic parties. People come from everywhere to participate in ethnic sport competitions and join in the extraordinary atmosphere around the bonfire.
Enchanting Nightlife in Sanya
The night of Sanya
is even more spectacular than its daytime. The lights of fishing boats along the coast sway lightly with the wind, party vistas can be observed in all kinds of bars, and neon illuminates the island-round Coconut Dream Corridor. The Luhuitou Park, famous for its “love culture” and “ecological display” thematic, is known as the Love Mountain of the South China Sea. As you reach its summit and gaze into the open sea, you’ll also witness the wonders of Sanya under the cover of night.
The night market at the First Market is your no. 1 destination for an authentic experience of the local nightlife. The vistas of seafood, the fragrance of BBQ, the diversity of dessert and the freshness of fruits on shaved ice… So many options that are sure to meet all of your expectations. Most people decide to head to the night market between 9 and 10 PM, whereas most stalls close down after 11 PM.
If you stroll around Sanya Bay
at night, you’ll find beautiful night scenes. As night falls, bright lanterns and far-off lights on fishing boats along the seashore illuminate this quiet coastal area in a way that is sure to touch you. You can go on a ferry tour out on the sea to admire the contrast in Sanya Bay between the starry night sky and the city’s neon lights. That is a sight you won’t forget.
A Popular Destination for International Events & Wedding Pictures
In recent years, Sanya
has become the host destination for many popular international events, represented by the New Silk Road Modeling Contest, the Miss World International Finals, the 14th Golden Rooster and Hundred Flowers Film Festival, and the International Golden Coconut Film, Advertisement and Arts Week.
Sanya, with its breathtaking sea vistas, is also one of the most popular domestic destinations for wedding pictures. Dadong Sea
is known for its blue seas and skies as well as its convenient; Yalong Bay
, for its incomparable sea vistas; the island-round Coconut Dream Corridor, for its perfect for watching sunrises and sunsets; Haijiao Tianya
, for its rich metaphors. You may even want to try one of the private beaches of starred hotels… In Sanya, you’re bound to find the scenery your heart is longing for.
How to Get to the City
Sanya Phoenix International Airport is the airport at which you’ll arrive at and depart from Sanya, situated about 7 km away from the urban districts of Sanya Bay. Non-stop flights are available from and to Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Macao, Urumqi, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guiyang, Xi’an, Guilin, Tianjin, Harbin, etc.
The Sanya New Railway Station is located in the suburban Litchi Groove. Direct trains to Beijing West Railway Station and to Guangzhou, among others, are available. There are also 10 high-speed trains scheduled to shuttle back and forth between Sanya and Haikou every day, taking about one hour and a half. There are also a few direct trains to the Yalong Bay Railway Station.
Why not spend your next holiday in this paradise favored by the Heavens? Experience the end of the sky and the corners of the sea, have an encounter with the great sea and enjoy the blue skies. Any time you need a break, come to this tropical island for a refreshing swim!