April 3, 2023
BEIJING – As temperatures rise, spring flowers are getting close to peak bloom, attracting flocks of tourists to appreciate the springtime.
Data from Ctrip.com showed that from March 1 to 12, bookings for flower-viewing spots surged about three times compared with the same period in February. The majority of tourists are people born in the 1980s and 1990s, Ctrip said.
Wuhan University received more than 200,000 visits during its cherry blossom festival from March 15 to 27 this year.
It’s not easy to book a reservation for entry as the university put limits on the visitor number, said a photographer surnamed Wang, who went with his wife.
“But we took some good photos. The spring scenery made me feel refreshed,” Wang said.
Ctrip.com recently released a list of 20 domestic destinations that enjoy popularity on the platform because of their spring flowers.
In addition to Wuhan, capital of Hubei province, the list contained Anshun in Guizhou province, Zhangping in Fujian province, and Wuyuan in Jiangxi province, which is famous for stunning rapeseed flower fields.
These cities have launched a variety of flower-related activities to lure more tourists and offer them novel experiences.
Yuantouzhu scenic area in Wuxi, Jiangsu province, extended its opening hours from March 18 to 28, allowing people to admire blossoms in the evening.
Meanwhile, visitors can watch live music and light shows and participate in sports such as running and kayaking.
“I have been to Yuantouzhu many times before, but it’s my first time to see cherry blossoms at night, which is very impressive and romantic,” said a visitor named Song Xiaoning.
On the first day of the event, the scenic area received more than 40,000 visitors, surpassing its pre-pandemic levels, according to its management committee.
In Yining county, Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, the apricot flower culture and tourism festival will last through to April 6.
Billed as “the town of apricots”, the county houses about 2,000 hectares of apricot trees in different species. Visitors are being offered more than 20 activities during the 10-day festival, including a concert held in the apricot orchard, a traditional handicraft market and an ethnic costume show.
In addition, organizers released some apricot-related products such as flower-shaped popsicles and sticky rice rolls filled with jam.
The craze for spring flowers has also fueled camping tours, which have gained popularity in China since 2022.
According to Ctrip.com, it saw a month-on-month increase of 135 percent in bookings made from March 1 to 16 for camping tour products. Ctrip said campsites with flowers in bloom are hot sellers on its platform.
“Spring is the season of hope and renewal. I take my children to enjoy the beauty of spring every year,” said Yang Meifang, 32, who toured Chang’antang village in early March to see plum flowers. The village in Xi’an, Shaanxi province, has a 3.3-hectare Chinese plum tree park, which is the largest of its kind in the city.
“Many scenic spots like this now provide campsites, which allow us to spend more time outside in nature and have a different experience,” Yang said.