Fly To Xiamen, China
Lying on the southeast coast of China, Xiamen is a major seaport and has been since bygone eras. Xiamen is one of the special economic zones of China and consists of several areas. The city has been dubbed the Egret Island owing to the hundreds of thousands of egrets that inhabit it.
Xiamen has a subtropical monsoon climate which brings mild weather throughout the year except for the typhoon months. This makes it an ideal destination for a holiday. There is an abundance of tourist attractions like mountains, temples, islands and parks which pave the way for an eventful sightseeing itinerary. There are even sea tours you can join to explore the sheer beauty of the smaller surrounding islands.
Visa Requirements & SA Embassy Details
- South Africans travelling to Xiamen do require a Visa to enter China. You’ll also need to make sure that your SA passport is valid for 6 months from the date of your return and has a few pages free for stamps.
- The South African Embassy in China is in Beijing at 5 Dongzhimenwai Dajie 100600, Beijing. Phone: +86 10 8532 0000.
See and do
Xiamen’s gorgeous scenery can be enjoyed both day and night. To chill out take a stroll along Yudang Lake at night and see how the city transforms into something different: take in the scent of the sea and the lighted sculptures. Some buildings put on a light show which makes for a nice backdrop. Night markets are a bustle in the city too.
There are a number of lovely parks to explore including Bailuzhou Park that comes alive with vendors, dancing and musical entertainment from 8:30pm.
For a cultural experience, head to Nanputuo Temple, a massive Buddhist temple outside Xiamen University. You can climb the mountain just behind the temple for amazing views of the city and you can also walk around the lotus pond or grab a bite at the vegetarian restaurant.
You should also set foot on Gulangyu – an island just across the harbour. A walk around is a great experience as all types of handicraft hawkers, food vendors and quaint cafes beckon. A day trip is enough here unless you’re really seeking peace and tranquillity.
If it’s the nightlife you’re after, Xiamen’s is rich and vibrant. All the major hotels have live bands in their lobbies in the evenings and clubs “1801” and “Dushang” are popular hangouts. Haiwan Park is the main attraction though with clubs and pubs in abundance.
As for shopping in the city, stores, malls and markets are plentiful. For great keepsakes be on the lookout for locally produced handicrafts and paintings as well as ceramics, Chinese antiques and nuts.
Taxis are cheap to get around in and the local bus system is excellent. There is also a frequent ferry service to and from Gulangyu. Biking around Xiamen is a brilliant way to take in the city as is a motorbike.
Xiamen Goaqi International Airport – XMN
The Xiamen airport is located at the northeast end of Xiamen Island and it takes around 10 minutes to get from the airport to downtown Xiamen. The airport opened to the public in 1983 and is one of the ten busiest airports in the country, servicing approximately 10 million people each year.
Currency Exchange: There is a branch of the Bank of China in the International Departure Terminal where you can exchange currencies. There are also a few ATMs for Industrial & Commercial Bank of China; Bank of China; China Everbright Bank and China Construction Bank in both the Departure and Domestic Arrival Terminals.
Lost Luggage: There are lost luggage counters at both sides of the departures terminal as well as in the central area of the arrival terminal.
Airport Hotel: Xiamen International Airport Garden Hotel is a 4 star hotel with 172 rooms located at the airport.
Airport Hub: Xiamen Airport (code XMN) is a hub for Xiamen Airlines.