• ~ mins read

September is a transition period between a hot, humid Chinese summer and a crisp, cool autumn. The weather in China in September is distinctly cooler than the peak summer months, and the crowds are smaller, making it the perfect month to explore this vast country. This is a good time to see big-ticket attractions like the Great Wall and the Forbidden City in Beijing and go on a grand cruise on the Yangtze River. If you spend your time touring in China in September, you’ll be rewarded with gorgeous foliage in the Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve and the changing colors around Kanas Lake, especially in the latter half of the month as the fall sets in.

12 Days China Tour
  • Amine Hakim
  • From England
5 - Excellent
“We had a great trip and each tour guide had his/her own expertise which made our tour...” Read More
View Incredible Tours in China

China Weather in September

A view of Hangzhou and the greenery around it in China in September.
The fall colors start covering China, which makes for wonderful vacation pictures.

September is the beginning of autumn in China, with the relentless summer heat finally starting to ease. The weather becomes noticeably cooler and dryer in the north, while the south sees a more gradual transition as the month progresses. However, parts of southern China can remain warm, and rain is common. Showers are also frequent in southwest China. Typhoons are not unheard of in Hong Kong and Macau and along the southeast coast. Average temperatures in China in September range between 16°C (60°F) and 26°C (79°F). Beijing registers an average high of 26°C (79°F) and an average low of 15°C (59°F). The early autumn weather in Hangzhou is more comfortable than summer, settling at an average high of 28°C (82°F) and an average low of 21°C (70°F). The average temperatures in Xi’an are 25°C (77°F) and 16°C (61°F), respectively.

Weather in China in September - Rainfall and Temperatures

  Avg Daily (°C/°F) Avg Nightly (°C/°F) Avg Rainfall (mm)
West China (Ürümqi) 23/74 11/52 26
North China (Beijing) 26/78 15/59 46
East China (Shanghai) 28/82 22/72 87
South China (Shenzhen) 31/88 25/77 254

Why Visit China in September

Fireworks at night during Macao Fireworks Contest in China in September.
Many countries participate in the Macao International Fireworks Display Contest.
A blue sky above Chinese architecture in China in September.
You can enjoy the sights in China with fewer tourists around you in September.

September is one of the best months to visit the country. Here’s why traveling to China in September makes a lot of sense.

  • Autumn celebrations: September’s biggest festival is the Mid-Autumn Festival, a celebration of the harvest season that includes feasting of savory moon cakes. Different regions have their own traditions. For instance, Hong Kong holds the Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance, which features elaborate parades. The legendary Chinese philosopher Confucius’ birthday falls in September and is celebrated by food offerings and ceremonial dances. Also, look out for spectacular fireworks as teams from around the world compete in the Macao International Fireworks Display Contest.
  • Post summer: Except for some parts of south China, the weather is cooler in large parts of the country. This means you can explore cities as well as natural spaces easily. Also, the far north is not yet in the grip of biting cold and waiting to be discovered too.
  • Cycling season: Whether you’re doing the short and sweet West Lake loop in Hangzhou, pedaling on the top of Xi’an’s ancient walls, or embarking on the epic 360-kilometer Qinghai Lake Grand Loop, you’re in for a treat if you’ve got biking on your mind if you are visiting China in September.
  • Fewer crowds: Since the peak tourist rush is over, September sees fewer tourists. So your visits to top-rated attractions will be less stressful.

Where to go and what to do

Clouds over the mountains in Huangshan.
Huangshan Mountains are popular for their morphologic scenery, which makes this place look out of this world.

Shanghai is one of China’s most sophisticated and modern cities, and yet behind the shiny glass and steel glitz lies a rich and layered history. Start your discovery of this mega city at the Shanghai Museum, which has a wonderful collection of pre-modern Chinese bronzes, ceramics and calligraphy. For an unforgettable view of the city, visit the ‘Top of Shanghai Observatory,’ perched on the 118th floor of Shanghai Tower. There are still eight more floors to the top, where you can enjoy a 4D music show. Another atmospheric way to tour Shanghai is by taking a cruise on the Huangpu River.

September is also the ideal month to visit the Yellow Mountains, or Huangshan National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that has been attracting artists and writers for centuries. Huangshan has several well-marked trekking paths, such as the easy-to-complete Eastern Stairs, the longer Western Stairs and the rugged Flying Rock. While in Huangshan, don’t forget to visit the scenic and well-preserved ancient villages of Hongcun and Xidi. Also, stroll in the alleys and lanes of Tunxi Street, dating back at least 700 years.

Add Fenghuang to your bucket list of charming places to visit in China in September. Take a boat trip along the Tuo River, which runs through the heart of the town. Along the way, you will see old-style wooden buildings built on stilts. Visit the town’s best-known sites like Longevity Palace, Hong Bridge, Chaoyang Palace, East Gate Tower and Wanming Pagoda. Fenghuang comes alive at night when the riverside is lit up. Sit back at any open-air bar and enjoy the live music.

Need Help Planning a Trip to China in September?

Moderate temperatures and the early autumn colors make September a gorgeous time of the year to visit China. Walk the streets of China’s ancient towns, discover the country’s timeless art, marvel at the skyscrapers of its biggest cities and enjoy picturesque hikes. Our local travel experts will help you plan a tailor-made trip to China in September that meets all your requirements.

Published by Tim Green, updated on March 22, 2024

Related Articles

Plan a trip to ChinaWe offer different tour types. You can also chat with a local travel specialist if you want a customized tour to China.
  • Ruby Zhao
    Ruby ZhaoTravel Expert in China
  • Cindy Wang
    Cindy WangTravel Expert in China
Our travel experts are recommended by:
  • BBC
  • Independent
  • Lonely Planet
0 COMMENTSWe welcome your questions or comments to this article. Our travel experts will respond within 48 hours.