Sanya : Is this the Chinese Riviera?

I will be the first to admit, I didn’t know where Sanya was when Sanya Tourism approached me to participate in the #SanyaHeartstoHearts campaign… I had to quickly look it up. But then again my Travels around Asia is lagging behind anyway. Looking at some of the pictures that Visit Sanya shared I was intrigued and excited.. like I had just discovered New Land. The wide sandy beaches, blue waters and tropical landscape were reminiscent of other Riviera that we have visited.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

Sanya lies at the southern tip of Hainan Island at Sanya Bay – once an escape for political exiles and criminals, people now flock there for Sun, Sand and Sea. Hainan is located in the South China Sea, separated from Guangdong’s Leizhou Peninsula to the north by the shallow and narrow Qiongzhou Strait. The area has a tropical wet and dry climate with warm weather all year around. Sanya was sometimes called Tianya Haijiao, meaning “the end of the sky and ocean” or “the corner of the sea”.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

Sanya is very well known tourism destination in China with quite different natural beauties and appearance. The view of bright sunshine, blue water and wide beaches at Sanya, the southernmost tip of Hainan Province, attracts many regular visitors from both home and abroad year upon year. It is said that Sanya has the most well-preserved and beautiful beaches in all of China.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

A Riviera had one more requirement in addition to having miles of beautiful beaches, which is beautiful resorts! Sanya has just that – Resorts like Ritz Carlton, Marriot, Hilton, Mandarin Oriental, Intercontinental and Anantara to name a few … line the Yalong bay with white beaches and views of mountains while caressed by calm and crystal-clear waters.

Hainan China beach

No one gets bored of laying on the beach enjoying the Sun and Sea, but if you do there are other things to do like

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

Participating and experiencing Taichi also known as Chinese Traditional Martial arts alongside Scenic South China views with a famous master teacher set. Or getting a Chinese herbal Spa treatment that refreshes both body and soul!

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

Visit The Nanshan Temple, and the giant sea-side statue of Kwan-yin which stands 108 meters (353.33 feet) high. The South Sea Guan Yin is a modern architectural wonder that surpasses New York’s Liberty by 15m! This world’s 4th tallest statue is depicted as a three-face serene figure showering compassion onto beholders of his (or her in Chinese lore) lenient smiles from different directions. You can bathe in the pure blessing of the most famous Bodhisattva in the East. A second statue of Kwan-yin, is also located nearby, stands 3.8 meters high (12.47 feet) and was constructed out of gold, diamonds and jade, among other precious stones. It is said that its craftsmen used over 100 kg of gold to make this statue.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

Visit the largest Pearl Museum. Explore Yanoda Tropical Rainforest Tourism Park which is located 35 km from Yalong Bay, Sanya. Experience China’s No.1 Hot-spring, Pearl River Nantian Hotspring that is just a short drive away.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

Visit Sanya Tianya-Haijiao Tourism Zone, 23 km away from downtown, is a symbolic attraction of Sanya.Tianya-Haijiao in Chinese means the remotest corners of the world“.  In 1714 (the 53rd Year of the Kangxi Emperor’s Reign, Qing Dynasty), bearing the imperial edict from the Kangxi Emperor, three imperial envoys from the Imperial Board of Astronomy came to Xiamaling of Hainan, and they left the inscription reading “Hai Pan Nan Tian”, which means that this spot is the border between heaven and earth on China’s territory. The characters Nan and Tian mean the area within the orbit of the sun. The inscription of Hai Pan Nan Tian means the South China Sea is divided into two halves at the spot of the inscription, namely the farthest point of the skies, and the northern brink of the sea. The rock in the southeast marks the height of the sun at noontime on the day of winter solstice. Each year, at noontime of the winter solstice, the sun is exactly above the rock in the southeast with the inscription of Hai Pan Nan Tian. The rock in the northwest marks the height of the North Pole in this location.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

And of course enjoy local Chinese cuisine at the restaurants – Fresh fruit and fish is a staple on Hainan’s menus with plenty choices for vegetarians as well!

We love visiting Rivieras, we have been to the French RivieraSpanish Riviera, Danish Riviera, Mexican Riviera, Swedish Riviera, Italian Riviera(I think Amalfi coast needs to be classified as the Italian Riviera too not just the coast of Cinque Terre but that is a different topic) so far and have a few more we would like to visit but definitely adding Sanya to the list.

Sanya : Chinese Riviera

From the pictures of Sanya, it does looks like the Chinese Riviera, don’t you agree? But this tranquil slice of paradise – Sanya, needs to be experienced before we put a tag on it and that too a beautiful tag like Sanya – the Chinese Riviera! So what are you waiting for Lets go find out if Sanya is the Chinese Riviera!

Photo credit : Sanya tourism, Ritz Carlton, Marriot

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Sanya - The Chinese Riviera

29 thoughts on “Sanya : Is this the Chinese Riviera?”

  1. I’ve heard of Sanya being called the riviera of China and must visit soon. Actually, a friend of mine was a hotel manager there and he always spoke highly of the destination. Next stop…Sanya?

  2. Hi

    It was an interesting read about Sanya. It is for the first time that I come across this wonderful destination. China always reminds me the great wall and difficult treks. It was quite refreshing to know China has other side of sandy beaches.

  3. I’ve never heard of this place before, but now I’m just itching to go. It sounds so pure and beautiful! I’m a sucker for museums so I would love to visit the Pearl Museum.

  4. Looks like a gorgeous place to visit! I had not heard of Sanya but when we explore Asia someday we will be stopping by for some fun!

  5. Just found your blog. I have a food and travel blog myself. This place does indeed look like the Chinese Riviera.. haven’t even heard of it. This is quite impressive – all the places you have been to. Really inspiring.
    Great job!
    Nisha @ Honey What’s Cooking recently posted…Romantic Restaurants in St. Thomas USVIMy Profile

    1. Thanks Mark, we love visiting Rivieras 🙂 The Gippsland pictures looks gorgeous. Thanks for the tip.. did not know about the ninety mile beach or the other cute towns like Phillip Island.

  6. To be honest, I never put China at the top of my list for next travel trips, but I had no idea there was a place like this. There is so much culture and interesting sights in this country, this has inspired me to do some more research and get there sooner!

  7. What an amazing area, highlighted beautifully with your photos. I have not been to any part of China but hopefully will change that within the next year. Thanks for linking with #TheWeeklyPostcard
    Lyn @ A Hole in my Shoe recently posted…48 hours in SydneyMy Profile

  8. Wowza! I’ve never heard of Qinghai before, but now that I have, I’ll definitely putting it on my list. I love it.

    Thanks for linking up with #wkendtravelinspiration!

  9. Wow, so stunning! I did not picture this when I pictured China! I’ve been to Qinghai in China, and really loved my time there, so I’m hoping I’ll have the opportunity soon to explore more of what’s obviously a hugely diverse country in terms of landscape 🙂

  10. Wow, this is such an amazing place! It’s strange to hear that Sanya was once an escape for political exiles and criminals. They must have had a blast here…

  11. I have never considered a beach vacation in the Chinese Riviera until now! Thank you! It truly sounds more like heaven than Earth.

  12. Wow your photos are absolutely stunning! I love relaxing on beaches but also like having other things to do. Santa certainly looks like the Chinese Riviera! Putting it on my bucket list 🙂 #SanyaHeartstoHearts

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