Why Travel to Yunnan in Winter

Yunnan, the most southwestern province of China, is home to mild weather, diverse culture, delicious foods, and stunning scenery. Winter is a decent time to travel Yunnan. The highest mountains and the coldest temperatures in winter can be experienced in the northern part of Yunnan which borders Tibet. However, travelling around LijiangDali and Kunmingof the central Yunnan would be a great experience. The weather is good enough with bright sunshine, azure sky and less rainfall. Flowers are in full bloom, and you may feel like it is in spring not in winter. This page introduces you why travel to Yunnan in Winter.

1. Pleasant Weather

Yunnan is a warm winter holiday destination in China. From December to February, the generally temperature is between 12ºC – 18ºC, and if there is sunshine, the temperature can rise above 20 ºC. Popular destinations in Yunnan like Lijiang and Dali have an average high of around 16ºC in December, and Xishuangbanna (home to the only tropical rainforest in China) averages 26ºC in December. It makes being outdoors really enjoyable in the winter months in Yunnan. Please note that the time difference between day and night is great, bring enough warm clothes too.

Read more about Yunnan Climate

2. Colorful Festivals

Yunnan is home to 25 of China’s ethnic minority groups, which make up over 34% of the local population. In the winter days of Yunnan, except for the Chinese Spring Festival, there are numerous local festivals that happen in accordance with their minority traditions such as the Sword Pole Festival which is one of the earliest of the season. Experiencing the festivals themselves, or even helping with the preparations, is a great way to understand the ethnic minority cultures that inhabit so much of this diverse province. 

Read more about Yunnan Ethnic Festivals.

3. More Cost-effective

Yunnan is a big tourist province. Compared to other times, crowds of domestic tourists are much lower in winter, while the prices for hotels, transportation, etc, become much more negotiable. During the popular travel seasons, many hot destinations are overcrowded while winter is a good time to appreciate these beautiful places at your own pace. However, you’d better avoid the holiday of Chinese Spring Festival due to many Chinese people will choose to spend their holiday outdoors with their family during the holiday. All kinds of travel costs will rise sharply during by then.

4. Unique Scenery

Yunnan is suitable to visit all the year round for its abundant tourism resources. It is a very diverse province with the Himalayas in the north and subtropics in the south. In winter, you can enjoy its unique scenery that cannot be seen during other seasons. Mainly birds from Sibiria come to Yunnan during the winter months such as red-beaked seagulls and Black-necked Crane. The rice terrace fields are completely filled with water before fresh rice grows again in spring. The fields along the mountain sides offer spectacular views especially during sunrise and sunset when you can see a colorful sky in the waters.