Just like some of wintry regions in the world, China can be unbearably cold for some. Fortunately, there’s a beautiful tropical escape located at one of the southernmost regions in the country, in a vibrant, more laid-back Sanya. The Dadonghai Tourism Zone, for one, has been inviting legions of beach bums, both locals and tourists, especially those who love to get away from the freeze.
Things to Do
Dadonghai, or the Great East Sea, is a crescent-shaped body of water that is formed between two peninsulas. It spans for around 1.5 miles with sufficient coastline for those who love to sunbathe or watch the sunsets.
As a tourism zone, it’s a well-developed public beach lined with tiki bars. There are also a couple of open cottages, where you can take a shade should the heat become excruciating on the skin.
The beach is known for its ultra-powdery white sands, which is very soft and smooth on the feet, so barefoot walks are a popular method of moving about. The waters are crystal clear and deep blue—ideal for snorkeling. If you want to go deeper into the waters, lease a scuba gear and dive or schedule a short cruise.
Dadonghai is also a well-known venue for a variety of water sports activities, which may sometimes be open to tourists. It’s also near a submarine dock and the Dadonghai Square, which holds exhibits, fairs, and conferences.
You will never go hungry when you’re in Dadonghai, as food options are incredibly abundant. You have the traditional Chinese restaurants and choices that cater to other Asian cuisines like Vietnamese and Western, especially in Outdoor Barbecue Square. Fusion dishes are also common. Of course, the best way to dine in the area is by selecting some of the most mouth-watering seafood dishes like abalone and shark fin in restaurants like Fu Guan Sea Food and Dong Jiao Ye Lin. Prices may start at CNY 100 for every person. Most of the restaurants are open all the way until evening.
Small shops are open along the beach, though you can always head to Summer Mall. Another non-water activity is tai-chi, which is normally scheduled during late afternoon or very early morning.
A few kilometers from Dadonghai Tourism Zone and about 10 minutes from the city center is the Sanya Luhuitou Park, a sprawling 82-hectare land composed of more than 3 hills, the highest of which has an elevation of close to 200 meters. Also referred to as the Love Hill, it’s a favorite getaway for anyone who likes to catch a much better sunset or sunrise in the sea-view platform. It also has some well-defined pathways or trails, depending on your preferred climbing challenge. You can also check out the sculptures and gardens, as well as immerse in a cool tropical forest that is home to several endemic flora and fauna. The park is normally open from 8 in the morning until 10 in the evening. Admission fee is CNY 30.
A few years ago, Sanya Luhuitou Golf Course was officially opened. It is an 18-hole golf course spanning 1.7 square kilometers and developed by Shanghai Mingshen Group. Every game is enhanced by the view of the cluster of palm trees, the South China Sea coastline, and powdery white sands of the nearby beaches. It is also home to a world-class hotel and a club that comes with an A-rated gym and restaurant.