Sanya, China is one of the hottest luxury locations in 2018. This small southern tropical province was relatively unknown just a year ago. Coined the “Hawaii of the Orient,” this resort town plays host an impressive number of 5 star resorts and hotel chains.. Head out in the countryside or urban centers and experience authentic culture during the day before returning back to posh relaxation and incredible cuisine made with the finest ingredients. After spending near a month touring the beaches, here are my suggestions for a best things to do on a week long luxury experience in Sanya, China.
Day 1 Ritz Carlton, Sanya
After a long haul flight from a US Hub (30+hours, eek!) on Hainan Airlines take a car from the Sanya Phoenix Int’l Airport to the Ritz Carlton-Sanya. After a quick check in, take a lap around the luxurious hotel and grab a bite to eat at the piano bar before catching a quick nap. Best thing to do is not to sleep too long or you’ll get off schedule and miss so many great things! After your cat nap, head over to the Sanya Coral Reef National Nature Reserve. There are over 100 types of coral reefs and fantastically colorful fish to observe. Go for a swim or relax on the beach. You’ve had a long day!
Day 2 Yalong Bay Tropical Forest/ Binlang Ethnic Village
After a traditional Chinese breakfast (and some incredible french toast) and loads coffee, it’s time to get to business! You’ve got lots to do. Double knot your laces to head down the biggest hiking trail in Hainan. The climb can be steep and the distances are not short, so feel free to take the bus as you check off scenic spots. Try to make it to Paradise Square, the highest point, for a stunning view of the island. It’s in the Tropical Forest that you’ll find the oft talked about suspension rope bridge. Cross it holding your lover’s hand for eternal happiness and bliss, according to local legend. I crossed it clutching the sides and taking shallow breaths. Tram rides and Ziplines are also available, I later found out. After getting back to a reasonable altitude, visit the Binlang Ethnic village and learn more about the indigenous culture. Be prepared for amazing dance performances (can you keep the beat?), snake petting (skip this) and old style Binlang huts.
Day 3 Tianya Haijio/Fejiezhou Island
After another amazing breakfast, travel to one of the most beautiful beaches near Sanya. This gorgeous spot is the southernmost tip of China and the favorite destination of honeymooners. (wink,wink) Learn the stories behind The Three Stones, view Celebrity Sculptures and visit the Li Ethnic Group Village. You can also hang out on the Tian-ya Cliffs if you dare. After a few hours on the beach, hop on a 10-minute boat ride to the small scenic island that is Fejiezhou. This is the tropics after all! Enjoy the clear water and layout on the white sand. Here you can go scuba diving, parasailing and tour the tree houses. Enjoy one of the many seafood restaurants before returning to the hotel. After a quick shower and some downtime, head out to the city to enjoy some nightlife.
Day 4 Yalongwan Central Square/ Mazu Temple/ Shenzhou
After several days of beaches, it’s time to change things up. Let’s buy some souvenirs! Yalongwan is a major shopping area in southeast Sanya City. After laying out next to the water yesterday, its time to get your blood pumping. In the Central Square, you’ll find a multitude of shops that sell everything under the sun. Take this time to try the amazing street foods of China and Russia. Central Square is a popular tourist spot so keep an eye out for visitors from all around the world. After hours of shopping head back to the hotel for some downtime to pack away your goodies. Grab your camera and extra SD card as you head to the oldest temple in the Hainan province. The well preserved Manu Temple was one once built to commemorate the Qing Dynasty but after the fall of power, the local made it into the temple of Mazu, Goddess of the sea. The evening is for relaxing and what better way to unwind than to visit the biggest hot spring spa in the province! Each hot spring at Nantain contains a recipe of spices to fight any ailment from rheumatism to indigestion. Enjoy a poolside BBQ after you melt your stress away.
Day 6 Summer Shopping Mall
Oh no, it’s your last full day in Sanya! Last time to shop, so visit the Summer Shopping Mall featuring the 6 stores of shops and some of the most coveted designers from around the world. If you’ve been dying to Instagram a Starbucks cup, here’s your chance. After you’ve lost your way in the mall and finally found your way out, head over to Phoenix Island to check out some modern architecture. Often called the Oriental Dubai, this manmade archipelago boasts some of the cities most futuristic skylines. End your night with an amazing light show.
Day 7 Haikou – Departure (B)
After breakfast, take a quick dip in the pool and relax around the hotel grounds before your transfer to the Hainan airport. Head back home to make your friend and family jealous with your amazing photos and videos.