In brief, Chongqing weather is as follows: early spring, hot summer, cool autumn and warm winter, with a long frost-free period and abundant rainfall. In summer, the temperature can reach up to 40 C (104 F), so Chongqing together with Nanjing and Wuhan are known as the ‘three furnace cities’ in China. Spring and winter are recommended as the optimum time to tour Chongqing.
Every year when spring is yielding to summer there is a great amount of night rain, and thus the city is famous for its "night rain in the Ba Mountains". On average, Chongqing has about 100 foggy days annually, so it is also famous as the 'capital of fog'.
Introduction to Chongqing Climate
Situated in the humid sub-tropical monsoon climate belt, Chongqing is characterized by mild weather , with an annual average temperature of 18 C (64 F). Chongqing receives abundant rainfall, averaging about 1,000 to 1,400 millimeters (39 to 55 inches) annually. However, it has the lowest annual sunshine in China, mainly because of fog and mist.
Chongqing’s spring comes towards the end of February or early March and lasts till early May. The temperature rises quickly, but is not stable. There are frequent cold spells and strong winds. Thus, a thin overcoat should be carried for a trip to Chongqing in early spring. It’s a good time to enjoy the flowers - the golden rape flowers and peony in Dianjiang County, peach blossom in Zouma Town and azaleas in Golden Buddha Mountain (Jinfo Mountain).
Summer in Chongqing is relatively long - some 120 - 140 days, from middle May to the end of September. It is incredibly hot and muggy, with an average temperature around 26 C (79 F). However, an abundance of summer resorts will make it possible for you to enjoy your stay in Chongqing. You will have a choice of savouring Yangtze River Cruise, Wushan Three Little Gorges, Wansheng Heishan Valley, Furong Cave, Snow Jade Cave and Yutai Mountain. Bring light clothing such as T-shirts, shorts and sandals if you come in summer. Also, remember to bring your umbrella, sunglasses, and suntan lotion to to protect yourself from the heat of this ‘furnace city’.
From October to late November is autumn in Chongqing. It is mostly cloudy and rainy, and the temperature drops gradually. A light jacket and long-sleeved T-shirt are needed at this time. There is a period of time called ‘Indian Summer’ from late October to middle of November when one has a golden opportunity to feast one's eyes on the red leaves in Garden Expo Park.
Chongqing has a low temperature of 4 C (39 F) in winter, about 1-5 C (34 - 41 F) warmer than Wuhan and Nanjing at roughly the same latitude. There is little frost or snow, but a lot of fog and mist. A short-sleeved T-shirt and a warm jacket are enough for the winter. A visit to Northern Hot Springs Park and Southern Hot Spring Park is of course a ‘must’ if you are in the area at this time.