Beihai Attractions - Things to Do
Beihai is ranked as one of the five most beautiful holiday resorts in China and is famous for its vast sea, long beach, islands, lakes, forests and hills. Many natural scenic spots and historical sites there are under the nation's protection such as Beibu Gulf Square, Xingdao Lake, Silver Beach, Underwater World, Dongpo Pavilion and Wenchang Pagoda. In addition, the islands of Weizhou and Xieyang, located in the Beibu Gulf, are also most attractive and very popular.
Due to the many local scenic spots, three routes are recommended to enable tourists to enjoy the journey and not feel exhausted.
Route No. 1
Beibu Gulf Square
Intro: Situated in the city center, Beibu Gulf Square characterizes the whole city: modern but retaining some traditional features. There is a symbolic sculpture called 'Nanzhuhun' (soul of the southern pearl) standing erect in the square. The white shell measures 15 meters (about 49 feet) high with a ball made of stainless steel like a pearl embedded in its center representing the Pearl City - Beihai. In addition, there are many traditional buildings around the square and sometimes some folk-custom activities are held there for all to enjoy.
Getting there: Take the bus No. 1/2/3/5/6/9/12/13/15/16/17/19/101/102 and get off at Beibu Gulf Square Station.
Beihai Silver Beach
Intro: Located in the southern seashore of the city, the Silver Beach is reputed to be a long beach of 24 km (about 15 miles) with soft white sand and gentle waves. It is a natural spot to bathe and has acquired a name as 'No.1 Beach under Heaven'. When in Beihai, one of the top things to do is to bathe there to enoy the sunshine.
Best Time to Visit: March ~ October
Getting there: City Bus: take bus no.3 /17 at Beibu Bay Square Station and get off at Silver Beach Station.
Tourism Special-Line Bus: get on at Beibu Bay Square Station and get off at Silver Beach Station. The operate time is 15:00-19:00. The ticket is CNY 2/ person.
Taxi: hailing a taxi from downtown area of Beihai City go there costs about CNY 20.
Beihai Underwater World
Intro: Situated in local Seashore Park, Underwater World is a big comprehensive museum which exhibits the halobios. It has two districts: Museum A is the former Aquatic Products Museum which is considered as one of the earliest and largest aquatic products museum together with Qingdao. Museum B is the biggest submarine sightseeing in the southwestern area of China. There are thousands of coral reef fishes swimming in Underwater World with many coming from the Pacific and Indian Oceans. The most breathtaking performance is of the divers dancing with the shark. Additionally, some artificial things are put in the underwater such as the Ancient City of Incas, the porcelain of the ancient Silk Road on the seabed, and the sunken boats of the Second World War.
Getting there: Take bus No. 3 and get off at Haibin Park Station.
Route No. 2
Intro: Wenchang Pagoda built in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) can be found in the southern area of Hepu County in the city. It is regarded as one of the best pagodas in the southern part of Guangxi Province.
Admission fee: Free
Getting there: Take the motorbike at Hepu County Bus Station for a distance of 3 kilometers (about 1.8 miles).
Intro: Dongpo Pavilion was built in memory of the great poet Su Dongpo in the Song Dynasty (960-1127). There is a Dongpo Well beside the pavilion and at the east side there is 'Dongpo Park'. The cultural background makes the Dongpo Pavilion a famous scenic spot in Hepu City.
Admission fee: Free
Getting there: Take the motorbike at Hepu County Bus Station and stop at Hepu Normal School in the City.
Intro: Located in the Hongchaojiang Reservoir 24km (about 15 miles) northwest of Hepu County, Xingdao Lake is famous for a total of 1026 big and small islands looking like many resplendent stars scattered in the blue lake, thus getting its name Xingdao (star island) Lake. The climate here is very comfortable and tourists can see the blue water wind around the green mountains and the scenery is charming. There is a place called 'Shuihu City' where the teleplay of the Chinese classical masterpiece-The Outlaws of the Marsh -is filmed.
Admission fee: Tour on the boat costs CNY 10; the east section costs CNY 10 and the west section costs CNY 8.
Getting there: Take the quick regular bus to Hepu County from Beihai Bus Station (fare is CNY 5) then take the motorbike to Hepu Cinema where there is a tour bus from Hepu Bus Station leaving once every 40 minutes between 7:00 - 16:40 for Xingdao Lake. At 17:40 the last bus returns to Hepu from Xingdao Lake and costs CNY 3. The bus returning to Beihai from Hepu Bus Station departs every 10 minutes between 6:30 - 21:00 with a fare of CNY 5.
Route No. 3
Intro: Located in the sea area of the Beibu Gulf in the south part and 36 sea miles (about 41 miles) away from city downtown area, Weizhou Island is the biggest extinct volcanic island in China. The scenery on the island is charming and gentle; especially the unusual scenery of volcanic lava and the magnificent crater which is a very rare sight. The marine eroded physiognomy on the island makes many rare mountain ranges and dangerous shoals. When you dive underwater, many life-forms in the sea such as live coral, trumpet shell, jellyfish and starfish come into view giving an illusion of paradise. At the banks of the island you can pay a visit to the Catholic Church or the Sam Po Temple and feel the different culture atmosphere of each. When the weather is fine, you can see the sunrise or sunset on Weizhou Island.
Admission fee: CNY 115 (including all the scenic spots on the island)
Getting there: By sea from Beihai to Weizhou Island on the hourly service and taking a little over 1 hour to make the crossing.
Best time to visit: April ~ November
Tips: By sea is the only way to access Weizhou Island, and it is suggested a round-trip ticket is purchased. When you are on the ship, put on the life jacket which is usually supplied under the seat and pay special attention to the safety instructions. Before your departure, you have to check the weather.
Intro: Xieyang Island is a small isle of no more than 2 square kilometers (about 0.8 square miles) located 9 sea miles (about 10 miles) away from Weizhou Island. Standing on Weizhou Island you can see the panorama of the sun slanting & shining on Xieyang (slanting sun) Island which gave it its name - Xieyang Island. On this island you can see the marvelous spectacle of marine eroded and accumulated physiognomy. There is abundant vegetation on Xieyang Island mainly consisting of Masson Pine and Taiwan Acacia. The islanders both on Weizhou Island and Xieyang Island are very honest and they live a simple life. There is no vegetable market on the island, thus each family lives on the fish. If there are fish left, they will put them in the sea water from the bank with no worry of them being stolen.
Admission fee: Free
Getting there: After reaching Weizhou Island by ship, you can then take the yacht or fishing boat.
Best time to visit: April ~ November
I heard the dive center or shops can be easily found there, so if you cannot find one, you can ask the hotel staff you live in for help.
Have a Blessed Weeekend.Hok Sum
About the apartment there, it is hard to say 'cause the specific regulations varies from one area to another in China. So maybe you can go there and turn to the local real estate for help.