The city of Xi’an, located in northwestern central China, is the capital of Shaanxi province. It’s one of the oldest cities in China, and served as capital for several historical dynasties. It is also extremely popular with tourists. Xi’an is home to many attractions, such as the Terracotta Army, the Giant Wild Goose Pagoda, numerous temples, museums, and heritage sites. It is also a beautiful and rich center of culture and history.
Despite being home to nearly 9 million people, it retains much of its old world charm. In fact, on the edge of town, tourists can visit Banpo and its associated museum. This site is the location of preserved artifacts from settlements in the area dating to 6000 BC! Xi’an feels far less crowded and busy than many of the coastal cities, too. And though it is a modern city, for sure, in many areas it is easy to feel like you’ve stepped back into ancient history.
Xi’an Weather and Climate
Xi’an is typically considered to have a temperate climate. It’s situated on the Guanzhong Plain, with the Qin Mountains to the south, and Wei River to the north. The summers are warm and humid, owing in part to the nearby Wei River, and winters are cold and dry, with minimal snowfall. Spring and autumn tend to be mild and relatively dry.
As for Xi’an weather, spring features periodic rain showers, though usually, minimal precipitation falls. Days tend to be mostly sunny or partly cloudy most of the time. By summer, however, the heat and humidity can spark short-lived thunderstorms. Mid-summer into early autumn is the rainy monsoon season, which is when Xi’an sees the lion’s share of its 22 inches of annual precipitation. Once the monsoons are over, however, it remains mild and dry through autumn and into early winter. Winter can see some snowfall but nothing too significant.
Best Time to Visit Xi’an
From the standpoint of the annual calendar, and based on Xi’an weather, the best time to visit Xi’an is either in spring or autumn. April and May are popular, with some rainfall but generally mild temperatures. Likewise, after the monsoons, late September, October, and into November are also favorable times to visit, with cooling temperatures and mostly dry weather. The busiest tourist season is from May to August, though it can be quite hot, humid, and stormy during this time. You can see for yourself on the temperature and humidity comfort level chart below.
As you can see from the above chart, the least comfortable months to visit – with the highest temperatures and most uncomfortable humidity levels, are mid-June to mid-September. Where the humidity comfort level crosses the high and low-temperature curves is really the best time to visit Xi’an, which corresponds to mid-April through early June, and late September into November.
In terms of a single day, the best time to visit Xi’an is early – or at least, it’s important to get an early start. Major tourist sites like the Terracotta Army can become quite crowded later in the day, making it hard to see and take pictures. It’s also useful to start earlier if you are visiting in the summer, as the heat and humidity later in the day can often become tiresome.
Helpful Tips and Advice
Depending on when you choose to visit Xi’an, you might encounter large crowds of tourists and locals. And even if you choose the best time to visit Xi’an, there are still some issues you might run into. So, we’ve compiled some helpful tips for travelers visiting Xi’an on how to make the most out of your trip.
- Avoiding crowds is sometimes difficult. The best way to avoid big crowds is to travel during non-peak tourism season, as we mentioned above. At the same time, if you are planning to visit very popular sites, it is often better to go to those early in the day. Most of the most popular tourist destinations tend to become more crowded by mid-day through early evening.
- Optimize your travel by planning ahead. You can often buy passes and tickets to various tourist attractions in advance. Some places offer ticket reservations, others will even send tickets to your hotel or to your home outside of China. Do some research online and book your plans in advance to ensure you can get tickets to all of the places you want to visit.
- Avoid the stress of figuring out your own travel plans and itinerary. Many companies, such as Trippest, offer small group tours (6 people or less). These tours feature well-managed itineraries, access to the most popular tourist sites, a native guide, and more. They remove the hassle and worry from travel, and let you focus on the sites and experiences that visiting a new country can offer.
- Looking for a place to eat, and not sure what’s good? It can be hard, even in tourist-heavy areas, when you don’t speak or read the language. A great tip is to choose places where a lot of locals are eating. If people are lined up to eat at a particular establishment, there’s a good bet the quality of food is excellent. Crowded places are also good, too, because you can always resort to pointing at other people’s dishes if you can’t communicate with staff as to what you desire to eat.
- Don’t forget to check the Xi’an weather in advance! Depending on when you travel, you might need to reshuffle your plans a bit based on rain or other weather issues. It’s best to check the Xi’an weather daily, and a few days prior to your trip. This will allow you to optimize your plans, to visit indoor sites on rainy or inclement weather days, and outdoor sites on good weather days.
In summary, Xi’an offers a wide range of attractions for tourists. Whether you choose to make your own plans, are part of a larger tour group, or join a Trippest small group tour, a little planning and preparation can help make your visit go smoothly. The best time to visit Xi’an is in the spring and fall, due to the much more favorable Xi’an weather at those times. Summer is popular, but can be uncomfortable due to the humidity and temperature. Regardless of when you visit, Xi’an can provide a memorable and rewarding vacation experience as part of your visit to China.
Recommended Tours With Trippest
Whether your time is limited or you just want to experience the most authentic history and culture, Trippest has prepared some boutique tours (mini group tours with no more than 6 travelers) for you: