What is South/Southwest China?
Before you try to figure out the weather, it's good to understand just what counts as South or Southwest China. The following areas and municipalities are considered to be in China's south and southwest so will experience the kind of weather described below:
Average Temperatures & Rainfall for Southern and Southwestern Chinese Cities
Here are some charts that will give you an idea of weather in cities in Southern and Southwestern China.
- Chengdu Average Temperatures
- Chengdu Days of Rain
- Guangzhou Average Temperatures
- Guangzhou Days of Rain
- Guilin Average Temperatures
- Guilin Days of Rain
Weather Conditions in South and Southwest China
It is generally wetter in the south of China and high temperatures are sustained longer. Winter, from January to March, like in Central China, is short but can feel very cold. April through September is the rainy season where temperatures and humidity reach highs. Along the southeast coast of China, the typhoon season is from July through September.
Layering is essential for the cold and rainy seasons in South and Southwest China. While temperatures during winter will not drop below freezing, it will feel cold because homes and buildings are not winterized. Insulation is not used for building and often the window frames are not very tights so cold air flows in. Chinese people are used simply to adding another layer of clothing to keep themselves warm.
If you are traveling to the region in the spring and rainy season, you will want decent rain gear as it will be common to see rain for several days in a row during these seasons. During rainy season, it can easily rain every day, all day long. Dreary? Yes - especially if you haven't anything dry to put on! They type of rain gear you bring will depend on what you are doing. If you are traveling for business, then I'd recommend wearing a good lightweight raincoat and bringing a pair of shoes to wear in the rain (that will get very wet) and changing into good shoes before your meetings.
If you are traveling as a tourist, then you will want to have a functional, lightweight raincoat, several pairs of shoes to interchange when one pair gets wet and enough layers to let things dry.
Autumn is the best time to visit Southern China because of the mild climate and break in humidity. Winter can also be nice in the far south as it will not be very cold for long and you can enjoy outdoor activities.
Of course weather varies and the above is meant to give the traveler general guidance and direction. Ready to start planning and packing? Follow my 10 Easy Travel Planning Steps to get started with your trip and read all about packing in my Complete Guide to China Packing.