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Spring is in the air in China in April. The month comes before the peak tourist summer season and is known for its cherry blossoms and occasional showers. April ticks all the boxes: the weather is pleasant, the scenery is lovely, and the costs are relatively low. This is an excellent time to see giant pandas in Chengdu, cruise the Yangtze, pose for pictures in beautiful fields of yellow rapeseed in Wuyuan, and tour Tibet before the hordes of tourists arrive. Read on to find out what your trip to China this month will look like.

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China Weather in April

Pink cherry trees at a tea garden in China in April.
China is covered with spring colors in April, which makes for a gorgeous vacation.

In China, temperatures in April start to rise as the month progresses. Rain is more frequent in south and central regions, while the weather in Shanghai on the east-central coast fluctuates between rainy and sunny days. The weather in Lhasa, situated in the southwestern region, is pleasant. You may run into an occasional sandstorm in Beijing. The exception to the overall moderate temperatures is the northernmost areas and high-altitude mountains, which remain cold. The average high temperature in April in Lhasa is 16°C (61°F), while the average low temperature is 2°C (36°F). The average high and low temperatures in Beijing range from 8°C (46°F) to 20°C (68°F), respectively. In Chengdu in April, the average high temperature is 24°C (75°F) while the average low temperature is 15°C (59°F).

Weather in China in April - Rainfall and Temperatures

  Avg Daily (°C/°F) Avg Nightly (°C/°F) Avg Rainfall (mm)
West China (Ürümqi) 16/61 5/41 32
North China (Beijing) 20/68 8/46 21
East China (Shanghai) 20/68 12/54 74
South China (Shenzhen) 26/79 20/68 154

Why Visit China in April

A woman cleaning her ancestors' tomb and decorating it in China in April.
The locals honor their ancestors by cleaning their tombs and offering food, tea, wine and incense during Qingming.
Locals splashing water at each other on a sunny day.
The Water Splashing Festival is a cleansing ritual celebrated in the Yunnan province.

April is one of the best months to visit this vast country. Here’s why it is a good idea to plan a trip to China in April.

  • Festive season: April is packed with festivals. The Weifang International Kite Festival in Shandong attracts competitors from around the world. Qingming or Tomb Sweeping Day is when families clean their ancestors’ gravesites and make offerings. The Dai people meanwhile celebrate the Water Splashing Festival, a fun event in south Yunnan province that features dragon boat races, fireworks, exchange of gifts, and, of course, splashing water on each other.
  • Spring colors: See cherry blossoms at Shanghai Botanical Gardens in Shanghai and Yuyuantan Park in Beijing. They also bloom in Guangzhou, Qingdao, Hangzhou, Wuhan and Wuxi. One of the popular flower exhibitions in China in April is the Luoyang Peony Festival, an annual gathering of peony enthusiasts when China’s national flower is in full bloom.
  • Biking trails: Though it’s colder in some parts, April’s weather in the south is lovely for cycling. A famous biking route is the Dragon’s Trail from rural Guizhou to Guangxi. The trail features traditional villages, rice fields, and impressive rivers.

Where to go and what to do

Buddhist structures at Potala palace in Lhasa.
Lhasa is a religious site in China, and many Buddhist sites can be found there.

Yunnan Province, covering an area the size of Germany, has everything from ancient cultures and mountain scenery to rice terraces and atmospheric towns. April is a great time to visit the Stone Forest, which is famed for its fantastic stone formations and geological exhibits. Also, catch a dreamy sunset at the gorgeous rice terraces of Yuanyang. Another must-visit place in Yunnan is the Golden Temple area, home to the largest bronze temple in China.

No trip to Chengdu in April is complete without meeting the city’s most iconic symbol — the giant panda. You can see these lovable animals at the Chengdu Panda Base, Dujiangyan Panda Base, and Wolong Panda Nature Reserve. The Dujiangyan Irrigation System is an engineering marvel that has been around for over 2,000 years and is still in use today. Admire the networks of dams, canals and bridges, and how they provide water for agriculture. Another must-visit site in Chengdu is the Wenshu Monastery, a walk back into China’s timeless past. This tranquil monastery also has a collection of more than 500 paintings and works of calligraphy.

Lhasa combines ancient culture, striking architecture, and epic scenery like few other places. Potala Palace was historically the seat of political and religious power in Tibet. You can see treasures like Buddhist murals, painted scrolls, frescoes, and sculptures inside. Your trip to Lhasa must include Jokhang Temple, the most sacred temple in Tibet. Don’t forget to stroll in the buzzy Barkhor market surrounding the temple. Also, check out the 15th-century Drepung Monastery, the largest monastery in Tibet that faces the Lhasa River and offers panoramic views of the valley.

Need Help Planning a Trip to China in April?

Traveling to China in April is a smart idea. The weather is cool but not cold, and the country is alive with the colors of spring. Make friends with playful pandas, visit ancient monasteries, hit the biking trail, and enjoy the festival season. Reach out to our local travel experts to plan a tailor-made trip to China.

Published by Tim Green, updated on March 15, 2024

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