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Beautiful architecture at West Lake in Hangzhou in China in March.Though the weather in China in March is still chilly in places, it’s the beginning of spring. China comes to life in March after a long, cold winter. Hotel costs are lower, and crowds are thin compared to the summer. Swathes of southern rural China turn a beautiful bright yellow thanks to the rapeseed season, while places like Shanghai and Hangzhou see the first spring blooms. The pleasant weather in Shanghai in March is perfect for walking along the Bund and admiring the purple cherry blossoms in the Chenshan Botanical Garden. This is also a great time to take a ferry ride in the port town of Xiamen and visit the 5th-century Shaolin Temple in Henan province. Read on to find out what your tour to China will look like this month.

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China Weather in March

Classic Chinese architecture in red at Hangzhou in China in March.
Take advantage of the amazing weather and try outdoor adventures in China.

The winter chill starts thawing in China in March, though it is still quite cold in the northern areas and at higher altitudes. Hong Kong and Macau are comfortable, weather-wise. You may encounter rain in some parts of southwest China and dust storms in Beijing. The average high temperature in Beijing in March is 12°C (54°F), while the average low temperature is 0°C (32°F). In March, the average high and low temperatures in Xi’an are 14°C (57°F) and 4°C (39°F) respectively. The weather in Guangzhou in March is more pleasant, with the temperatures ranging from an average high of 22°C (72°F) to an average low of 15°C (59°F).

Weather in China in March-Rainfall and Temperatures

  Avg Daily (°C/°F) Avg Nightly (°C/°F) Avg Rainfall (mm)
West China (Ürümqi) 3/37 -5/23 19
North China (Beijing) 12/54 0/32 8
East China (Shanghai) 14/57 7/45 94
South China (Shenzhen) 23/73 17/63 70

Why Visit China in March

A beach at Hainan Island on a sunny day in China in March.
Enjoy a beach holiday by visiting the islands in China in March.
Dragon with firecrackers in Shanghai in March.
Witness the locals celebrate colorful festivals in Shanghai.

In March, the weather in China starts to transition—winter is over, and the summer rush is still a few months away. Here’s why you should consider a trip to China in March.

  • Festive moments: China has a few fascinating festivals in March. The Shanghai Peach Blossom Festival features folk music, races, and other fun activities besides beautiful views of blossoming peach trees. If you’re in Guangzhou, enjoy the parades and dances at the traditional Polo Birth Festival Temple Fair, where people buy paper chickens for good luck.
  • Blossoms bloom: Cherry blossoms bloom usually between late March and late April. You can catch them at Yuyuantan Park, and the Summer Palace in Beijing, and Gucun Park in Shanghai.
  • Island vacation: Islands may not be the first thing that comes to mind when planning a trip to China, but tourists flock to Hainan Island in March to surf at Sanya Beach, see macaques at Monkey Island, and relax in the island’s hot springs.

Where to go and what to do

An aerial view of green rapeseed field in Luoping in China.
Go for a hot air balloon ride over rapeseed fields in China.

With a history going back more than a thousand years, Wuyuan prefecture has some of China’s most picturesque villages—perfect for exploring in March, especially in the latter half of the month when the temperatures start rising. Admire the ancient Hui-style buildings in Jiangxi Province, with their black tiles, white walls and elegant carvings. Visit the beautiful tea plantation in Jinzhu Village and learn about the local tea culture. Take a hot air balloon ride above Wuyuan’s colorful rapeseed plantations.

Xi’an’s star attraction — the Terracotta Army — is one of the greatest archaeological finds of the 20th century. This astonishing ‘army’ from the 3rd century BC, comprising thousands of life-size clay models of soldiers, horses, and chariots, was meant to guard China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang, in his afterlife. Another must-visit site in Xi’an in March is the Xianyang Museum, which has a collection of 3,000 tiny terracotta soldiers and horses once buried in the tomb of the first Han emperor. Originally constructed in the 8th century, the Great Mosque of Xi’an is one of China’s best-preserved Islamic structures. Notice its mix of Chinese and Muslim architectural styles, including Arabic archways, pagodas, and the lovely tiled wooden arch in the courtyard.

A trip to Guangzhou will give you a glimpse of both modern and ancient China. Check out the beautiful Sacred Heart Cathedral, built entirely from granite. The landmark Guangzhou Opera House is one of southern China’s most famous buildings, with its sweeping arches and twin-boulder design. A foreign settlement sprung up on Shamian Island in the Pearl River more than a hundred years ago. You can walk around the old district of the island and see the 19th-century European-style architecture.

Need Help Planning a Trip to China in March?

Experience the best of China in March — grand monuments, intriguing architecture, enchanting gardens, and fun-filled beaches — at attractive prices. The weather is pleasant in most parts, and spring colors start to flower as the month progresses. Our local travel experts will help you plan a tailor-made trip to China that suits your interests.

Published by Tim Green, updated on March 29, 2024

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