Honestly, I don’t consider myself a “beach person.” I always migrate toward cities, where I can find quirky restaurants and fun bars.
However, China is a huge country full of bustling cities.I lived in Shenzhen, a tier-1 city in Southeast China, for a year. As much as I loved this metropolis, I needed a change in scenery every once in a while. That’s why I started hopping on buses and riding to nearby beaches. Everyone needs an occasional weekend at the beach in order to recoup.
If you teach in Southeast Chinese cities, such as Shenzhen, Guangzhou, or Fuzhou, here are some of the best beaches for your relaxing day or weekend away.
1. Dameisha Beach in Shenzhen
If you teach in Shenzhen, Dameisha Beach is one of the best spots for a day trip. Most beaches in Shenzhen require a small entrance fee, and Dameisha is one of the only free ones.
For this reason, Dameisha is probably the most popular beach in the Shenzhen area. Be prepared for crowds. However, if you go during the off season, the crowds aren’t too overwhelming! Don’t let the prospect of masses deter you, though. Dameisha Beach is full of friendly locals, so this could be the perfect opportunity to test out your Mandarin!
Along the beach, you’ll see several massive, colorful, winged statues that set this beach apart from other ones in Shenzhen. The vibrancy of this beach is thrilling.
2. Xichong Beach in Dapeng
Dapeng, a suburb of Shenzhen, is a small beach town. If you live in Shenzhen, it’s a rite of passage to take a weekend trip to Dapeng at least once. The suburb is only a couple hours outside the city.
If you decide to work in Shenzhen, you may even decide you want to be placed in Dapeng. Then you can spend every weekend at the beach!
While all the beaches in this suburb are scenic, Xichong is special because it is usually the least crowded beach in Dapeng. You can sunbathe, but the real draw is the surfing culture. If you want a full day outdoors, walk the beautiful six-mile trail from Xichong Beach to Dongchong Beach, another beautiful setting.
3. Yalong Bay in Sanya
Sanya is a popular beach city in on Hainan Island. The island is a bit too far from most Chinese hubs for a simple weekend trip. Many expats visit Sanya during the month-long break for Chinese New Year or during summer vacation.
Yalong Bay is one of the most scenic beaches in China. You might want to just visit the bay for a day during your Sanya vacation. If you want to stay for a while, though, this is the ideal area to stay if you want an upscale holiday. There are many nice resorts near the beach where you can enjoy spa days between sunbathing days.
4. Gulangyu Beach in Xiamen
This beach is on Gulangyu Island in Xiamen. While the beach is relaxing and gorgeous, there are also numerous interesting attractions nearby. Check out one of the many museums, such as the Piano Museum or Organ Museum. (Don’t worry, those are organs as in musical instruments, not as in organs inside your body!)
Gulangyu Island is also known for its delicious seafood. I recommend stopping at a few food stands throughout the day so you can try as many dishes as possible.
5. Pingtan Longfengtou Beach in Fuzhou
If you live in Fuzhou, there is one main beach for a weekend getaway: Pingtan Longfengtou Beach.
Pingtan Longfengtou is a simple beach. The crowds aren’t usually too bad, so it provides a relaxing atmosphere. When you live in a city like Fuzhou, having a quiet place to get away is not to be taken for granted! Enjoy quaint local restaurants and go for a light swim in the clear, blue water.