China offers destinations for all tastes and...wallets. [Image: Flickr/Ricky Qi]
Luxury travel… Who wouldn’t like to belong to the elite and be one of the lucky ones who can easily afford the best destinations worldwide?
When money is no problem, travelling becomes a preferred hobby. At least, this was the result of a series of surveys conducted recently by the Hurun Report.
The findings were based on one-on-one interviews with 463 Chinese millionaires and billionaires. “New-found wealth and mobility means that travel...is now high on the agenda for China's elite,” concludes Rupert Hoogewerf, CEO of the Hurun Report.
While for many of us 'high on the agenda' is still paying the monthly bills, let’s still look at the top 10 favourite domestic destinations of the Chinese rich and super rich.
After all, these places offer different kinds of accommodation, catering, entertainment and shopping facilities. So, even if you’re budget travelling, you find something that suits you!
Number 10: Hangzhou
When in Hangzhou, a visit to the West Lake is a pleasant and relaxing 'must'. [Image: Radio86]
One of China's seven ancient national capitals, the city of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, is a highly sought-after destination not only for the Chinese wealthy people, but also for millions of regular tourists.
Whether you are an elite member or not, the breath-taking views of the West Lake will make you believe that sometimes, heaven can be found on Earth. No wonder, in June 2011 the West Lake cultural landscape of Hangzhou made its way on to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Number 9: Beijing
Do we really need to look for any explanations of why the heart and soul of China, Beijing, has ended up in the top list? The city is like a huge magnet that no one can resist.
Whether you possess the same amount of money as a Chinese millionaire or not, Beijing can quench your thirst for exquisite historical and modern architecture, not-to-be-missed museums, all-you-can-dream-of festivals, sport events topped off with a peculiar fashion sense.
Number 8: Dalian
The port city of Dalian looks especially romantic at sunset. [Image: CNS]
For sure, Chinese millionaires have an eye for the sweet things in life by placing Dalian high on the list of their favourite destinations. Embraced by the Yellow Sea to the east and the Bohai Sea to the west, the port city of Dalian could lure you with its scenic beaches, fresh seafood and gentle sea breezes.
Despite last year’s notorious oil spill that saw as much as 1,500 metric tonnes of heavy crude oil leak into the waters surrounding the port of Dalian, local tourism luckily hadn’t been dramatically affected.
In Dalian, it’s all about nicknames. The city is often dubbed ‘Oriental Paris’ and ‘Oriental Brazil’, and both are given for good reasons: fashion and football.
For years, the city has been stirring fashion lovers’ blood with its grand annual International Fashion Festival. Besides, the city is home to Dalian Shide F.C., one of the icons of China’s football.
Number 7: Macao
Fascinating view from Macao Tower. [Image: Radio86]
China’s special administrative region Macao is without a doubt the world’s gambling Mecca. Its grandiose casinos dwarf even the casinos of Las Vegas and keep the chips rolling and a glittering array of slot machines humming day and night.
Macao’s bewildering glitz and glamour and non-stop gambling pull in wealthy people from all over the country. For the tourists, Macao is a place to find the traditional Chinese culture while enjoying the exotic Portuguese architecture.
Although Macao is the world's most densely populated area, there’s always room for fun. Loads of fun.
Number 6: Tibet
It's good to start your trip to Tibet by exploring magnificent Lhasa. [Image: CNS]
Mountains piercing into the sky, snowcaps sparkling in the sunshine, secluded lamaseries and unique culture of its own: This is the magnificent Tibet. It is “The Roof of the World” that attracts both Chinese millionaires and ‘mere mortals’.
Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) and an object of devout pilgrimage, is definitely the number one place to see in Tibet.
Keep in mind that if you intend to visit TAR, just a Chinese visa is not enough. You need to get at least Tibet entry permit, issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau.
Also, if you’re travelling to Tibetan so-called ‘restricted’ areas or military sensitive areas, you’ll need a travel permit or a military permit respectively.
Stay tuned and soon we’ll move on to the dessert of our menu. Which of China’s cities and regions are in the top 5 dream destinations for the people with big money?