No. 1 Bay in China
Yalong Bay is located 28 kilometers to the Southeast of Sanya, the southernmost tropical coastal tourist city of China. A half-moon bay of 7.5 kilometers, Yalong Bay is highly famous in Hainan with long stretches of gentle and broad beaches extending 50-60 meters into shallow water. Pure soft sands contrast with clear azure seawater, offering visibility of 7-9 meters. Abundant resources in the underwater include coral reef, all kinds of tropical fish and rare shellfish. With a balmy average annual temperature of 25.5°C, the seawater is fit for swimming throughout the year with ocean temperature ranging from 22 to 25.1°C, giving it the reputation of “No. 1 Bay in China”.
With mild weather and picturesque landscape, Yalong Bay features blue sky, warm sunshine, fresh and moist air, rolling mountains, rocks of various shapes, tranquil virgin mangrove, calm and peaceful coves, limpid and clear seawater, fine and smooth sand beaches and rainbow-colored seafloor scenery. Coconut palms sway and shadow the 8-kilometer coastline, adorned with exotic flowers, rare herbs and virgin tropical vegetation. Resort hotels, each with its own unique style, scatter across along the coast like string of pearls, further highlighting the fascination and charm of Yalong Bay.
Integrating the five elements of modern tourism: ocean, beach, sunshine, greenness and fresh air, Yalong Bay presents a distinct tropical oceanic climate with temperature averaged 25.5°C year round. The lowest seawater temperature is a balmy 22°C in the winter, suitable for swimming and aquatic sports throughout the year. The bay covers an area of 66 sq. KM, capable of accommodating a hundred thousand people splashing in the water and thousands of yachts cruising.
Yalong Bay is now highly acclaimed as a well-known tourism brand. Vacationing in Yalong Bay is in fashion in China, with tourists looking to the holiday paradise for the idyllic natural scenery, well established tourism and vacation facilities, and unique tourism offerings.
Yalong Bay National Resort was established with approval by the State Council on 4th October 1992 as the only tropical style National Resort in China. The world-class resort covers an area of 18.6 sq. KM, with coastal beaches, luxury villas, conference center, fine hotels, resorts, submarine tours, aquatic sports center, golf course and yacht clubs.
The agreeable climate of Yalong Bay makes it perfect for vacation both in winter and summer. Beautiful natural scenery features undulating mountains, calm and peaceful coves, clear and azure seawater, and soft sands on pristine beaches. As the tourists praise, “No sea is as good as Sanya, and no bay is as good as Yalong.”With a typical climate of tropical oceanic, the average annual temperature is 25.5°C. Beaches with soft and smooth sands extend for 8 kilometers, about three times as long as that in Hawaii. Visibility is 7-9 meters underwater. The coral reefs, a national key conservation area, are preserved in good integrity, home to a myriad of variety of tropical fish. The bay covers an area of 66 sq. KM, capable of accommodating a hundred thousand people splashing in water and thousands of yachts cruising. It is not only a bathing beach but also a great destination for diving.
Most beautiful coast
The ranking list of the most beautiful places in China was released in Beijing on 23rd October 2005. Organized by China National Geography and co-organized by 34 national media, the poll for “the Most Beautiful Places in China” took 8 months to award three prize categories by “Expert Academic Group”, “Media Group” and “Popular Online and Cellphone Group”. From “Media Group” and “Popular Group”, 12 awards were selected by media polling, online and cellphone voting. The awards by the “Expert Academic Group” specially introduced by Chinese National Geography were in a class by itself, covering 15 categories of mountains, lakes, forests, grasslands, deserts, Yardang landforms, sea islands, coasts, waterfalls, glaciers, canyons, urban areas, rural old towns, tourism caves, and marsh wetlands. Among the eight most beautiful coasts in China, Yalong Bay ranks the first place.
Yalong Bay Square
Surrounded by mountains on three sides, the Square faces the ocean in the south with a crescent openings. In additional to the best of sunshine, seawater and beaches, there are also rare rocks, peculiar shoals and idyllic scenery to make up the unique landscape. Jinmu Cape and Yalong Cape are perfect places for rock-climbing adventures with jagged rocks of grotesque shapes above breaker battering the cliff. Out in the sea, Boar Island is surrounded by Dongzhou and Xizhou islands to the south, Dongpai and Xipai to the west, an open arena for various aquatic sports. A totem pole, 27-meter in height, is erected in the center of Yalong Bay Central Square, enclosed by three rings of sculpture clusters of Chinese ancient legends, myths and culture. Four pagoda tents shaped as white sails add a touch of modern flavor to the square of ancient cultural connotation.
The Yalong Bay Shell Museum is situated on the Central Square of Yalong Bay National Resort. With an area of 3,000 sq. meters, it is the first exhibition hall themed around shells integrating science education, exhibition and sales. Over 300 shells are displayed in five maritime spaces, representing specimens from around the world, including the Angel Wing - Seagull Clam, the living fossil - Hirase's Slit Shell and Nautilus. Visiting the show rooms in meandering paths, one feels immersed in an oceanic world, while marvelling the uncanny nature craftsmanship, also learning to cherish the nature and protect the ocean.
Yalong Bay Butterfly Valley is located in the north of Yalong Bay National Resort. Visitors are embraced with gorgeous colors once stepping into the butterfly-shaped exhibition room. Famous butterflies from around the world are exhibited in the five show rooms, including the some of the most precious specimens in China and the world: Teinopalpus imperialis, Teinopalpus aureus, Bhutanitis lidderdalii, Mountain silk butterfly, giant Papilio, owl butterfly, Chaetodon bennetti and the Moon butterfly. These genius creatures are truly source of wonders.
Out of the show rooms, visitors walk into a gigantic network of butterfly garden intricately built with natural vegetation in a tropical rain forest with ancient rattans, gracefully-styled banyan trees, famous dragon tree, vibrant hague and Lannea coromandelica. Surrounded with wild flowers and gurgling brooks, visitors linger for a long time in this cozy and tranquil world, accompanied by all the colorful butterflies.
Tropical forest park
Yalong Bay Tropical Forest Park is the first forest park in Sanya jointly developed by Sanya Forestry Bureau and Yuntian Tropical Forest Park Limited. Situated 25 kilometers to the Southeast of Sanya, the southernmost tropical coastal tourism city of China, the Park are located on the mountains on both sides of Yalong Bay National Resort. With a total area of 1,506 hectares, Park East and Park West hem in “No. 1 Bay in China” like open arms. Its vegetation is most tropical evergreen and semi-deciduous rain forests. It is a top choice for tropical rain forest tourism with abundant biological, geographical, astronomical, hydrological, human and seascape resources and a unique regional advantage. The park serves as a powerful contrast, complement and interaction with Yalong Bay National Resort, an important extension for Yalong Bay which fills in the blanks of eco-tourism, completing Yalong Bay as a truly integrated scenic resort.
Morning view of Forest Park. Master plan of the Park was completed in 2003, revised in 2007 and approved by the municipal government for implementation. The construction of landscape and scenic spots aims to preserve the natural ecology, with premium standards for tourism hospitality facilities. It is positioned to be a world-class forest park for coastal and mountain sight-seeing and eco-vacations. With estimated cost of 1.9 billion RMB, the Park is yet another signature piece for green tourism in Yalong Bay to contribute to the forestry tourism in Hainan Island.
Botanic landscape in forest
The forest vegetation in Yalong Bay Tropical Forest Park is mostly tropical evergreen and semi-deciduous rain forest with rich diversity – over 1,500 species in 133 families. Vivid seasonal aspect changes can be observed in complicated forest structure.
Tropical evergreen rain forest thrives in Hongxialing, the main peak, and Zuluoling, Qingyunling, Longtouling and other areas above 250 meters in elevation, which produces excellent sunlight and rainfall. The main tree species include Ficus altissima, Firmiana pulcherrma, white tea, Cleistanthus sumatranus, rattan bamboo, old pine, and Myrtle. Among which, Ficus altissima (Mountain Banyan) is the king of trees. Standing tall over other trees, they are often found hugging giant rocks with bulky trunk, extended branches and huge canopy, welcoming visitors with grandeur. Firmiana pulcherrma (Beautiful Sycamore) is the most beautiful landscape tree as the name suggests, which blossoms every May. The most peculiar plant is the rattan bamboo, which crawls and climbs like rattan. Interestingly, its bamboo shoots grow on the bamboo pole instead of in the ground. The rain forest is thick with luxuriant foliage and many forest forms, presenting clear features of plank roots, strangling and parasites. A multitude of species live and converge in multiple vertical dimensions, as a great illustration of tropical rain forest in Hainan.
Tropical semi-deciduous rain forests spread out in areas below 250-meter elevation, mainly including Cycas hainanensis (specie of class 1 protection), green plum (specie of class 2 protection), Dalbergia hainanensis (specie of class 2 protection), fine green bamboo, Lingnan mangosteen, Castanopsis hainanensis, Acacia pennata, Entada phaseoloides, and Ancistrocladus tectorius.
There are over 30 species of mammals, over 60 species of amphibians and reptiles, and over 100 species of birds in the park. The wild animals mainly include boar, rhesus monkey, boa, rasse and chameleon. The park is also a kingdom of butterflies, with over 20 colorful species.
“A mountain is not famous for its height but for the gods that dwell in it.” Hongxialing, the main peak, is 450 meters in elevation. A group of natural giant boulders sit on the top, a striking resemblance of a huge Maitreya Buddha sitting in meditation with clasped hands. A slanting banyan tree grows out of the boulders, just like a vivid dragon staff. Local villagers have long regarded the boulders as mountain god and paid worship. The scene is best viewed from mid-hill to the south of the main peak and the coastal areas. At the sweet spot of viewing, one is tremendously pleased with broad field of vision of the boundless sea and sky. The boulder god is the primary scene of the park. Apart from the main peak, the park also features many other ridges such as Weifengling, Zuluoling, Feilongling, Longtouling, Qingmeiling, and Shuanglongling. Rare rocks scatter in the mountains, the most well-known including the Sun Rock, Flying Stone, Elephant Rock, Hippo Rock, Pigsfeet Rock, Whitetiger Rock, Fairyfeet Rock, Sheepshead Rock, Turtle Rock and Runningwater Rock. The park features both steep cliffs and secluded valleys, offering excitement and peaceful retreat for those who seek it.
Watching from Longtouling Ridge, sunrise at sea is splendid and magnificent; while sunset and sunrise are unique scenes watching from the main peak. Sea of clouds is often observed on peaks and ridges, with fog banks rushing in from sea-sky horizon, making viewers to feel like floating in the air like fairies.
As recorded in Yazhou Zhi: “Tiger Head Ridge is southeast to Yulin Port, 200 meters in height, shaped like a tiger looking down the ocean. Any merchant ships will offer sacrifice to it when entering the port.” One end of the Tiger Head Ridge is call “White Tiger Cape”, while the mountain extending to Southeast from Hongxialing is called “Yalong Ridge”, with the coastal end called “Yalong Cape” (dragon cape). It is in line with traditional Feng Shui theory of “Dragon on the left and Tiger on the right”. Many localities are named after “dragon”, such as Dragon slope village to the east, famed for being the slope where dragon king bathed in sun; Yalong Bay to the south, a place where dragon king stirred up the waves; Large dragon pond and small dragon pond by the bay; there used be a Rain praying village, where villagers prayed to the dragon hill and the Buddha rock for rain in drought.
Also recorded in Yazhou Zhi: “In July 1875, water in Ironforge Pond in Baoping was aglow with light, bright enough for reading at night. Scooped to hand, water was like loose pearls. Splashed in dark room, water was like white silver. It lasted for three months without fail. After three years, the light came back for another quarter.” It is referring to the Ironforge Port, Northeast to the Park, next to the National Resort Coast – Haitang Bay, which can be seen from all the peaks in the Park.
Local residents are mainly Ethnic Li with their unique and rich folk culture.
Seascape marvel – “No. 1 Bay in China”
November 1992, Mr. Yang Chengwu, the then Vice Chairman of CPPCC gave Yalong Bay the title “No. 1 Bay in China”. Today, Yalong Bay is well-known around the world to be the top coastal bay in China, living up to its title of “No. 1 in China” and in the same rank of top coasts in the world such as Hawaii, Bali, Phuket, Cancun and Gold Coast. Yalong Bay Tropical Forest Park is a tropical coastal forest park that looks down at the “No. 1 Bay in China”, which is the best scenery for the Park. With its many turns and bends, highs and lows, Yalong Bay presents a great variety of charming scenes. Climbing up the Hongxialing and looking out to Yalong Bay, below the blue sky and white clouds, one can view the boundless expanse of trees and clear water, stretching to the infinite Pacific. It all comes together as a fabulous giant landscape painting, with white pristine beaches, scattered five-star hotels, golf courses with carpets of green turf, fields on coconut palm and rice paddy… It is a truly refreshing and inspiring view.