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Holiday in Sanya: The “Hawaii of China”

Sanya is a beautiful coastal city in southern Hainan, an island and province in China that is often called the Hawaii of China because of its beautiful beaches and tropical weather. After 5 years of living in China I finally took a trip here and enjoyed the warm weather, fantastic seafood, and chill beach vibes for 5 days.

Here’s a look at where to stay and what to do when in Sanya.

Where to Stay

There are many different beach areas to stay in when you’re in Sanya. Where you stay will depend on how close to the city center you want to be and what activities you want to do. When I was in Sanya we stayed in two different areas to experience two different beaches.

Dadonghai Bay Tourist Area

As the name suggests, it’s an area great for tourists. We stayed here for two nights and enjoyed that it was close to the city center and other attractions in Sanya. Our hotel was right across from the beach, and there was a chill board walk area with restaurants, bars, and shops. If you don’t have much time in Sanya and are looking for a fun experience near music and bars, I’d recommend staying here. It’s cheaper than other areas as well! We stayed at the Pearl River Garden Hotel, which had a nice rooftop pool area.

Yalong Bay

Yalong Bay is known for having the best beaches in Sanya. This area is full of resorts, and is great if you’re looking for a quieter, more all-inclusive experience. We stayed at Resort Golden Palm in Yalong Bay for 3 days and enjoyed the close proximity to the beach and a nearby restaurant area. There wasn’t too much else in the area to do, but it’s perfect for relaxing beach and pool days.

Top Things To Do in Sanya

1. The Beach (of course!)

2. Phoenix Hill Park

Right in the city center of Sanya you’ll find Phoenix Hill Park. You can take a cable car up to the top then hike around for some great views!

3. Sanya Nanshan Tourism Area

This is an iconic scenic area in Sanya! We actually didn’t make the time to visit here, as we preferedded spending more time by the beaches and hiking. However, if you’re looking for a cultural experience, this area is themed around Buddhist culture and philosophy.

4. Live Seafood Market

There are many seafood market areas in Sanya where you can choose fresh seafood and take them to a restaurant next door. They willl cook it fresh for you!

5. Other Things To Do In Sanya

There are many other fun things to do on Sanya if you’re hunting for more! You can bike around the island (and even up to Haikou), go to Monkey Island, or just hang in a hammock for an afternoon.

Sanya is the perfect place for a chill holiday in China. It has all the feels of a southeast Asia vacation, with the ease of staying in China (especially if you’re an expat already living here and can’t leave the country).

Happy traveling!


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