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Changsha

Travel Guide Asia China Hunan Changsha

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Introduction

Changsha_Largest Restaurant 2

Changsha_Largest Restaurant 2

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Changsha is the capital of the province of Hunan, in south central China. The total municipality has about 7 million inhabitants.

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Sights and Activities

  • Hunan Provincial Museum
  • Theaters

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Weather

Changsha has a humid subtropical climate. Summers from June to mid-September see average highs of more than 30 °C (July almost 34 °C on average) with nights around a sticky 25 °C. Combined with high humidity this is not the best time for a visit. Winters from December to March average around 10-12 °C during the day and still above zero at night, with occasional frost and possibly a bit of snow sometimes. As April to June is the wettest time of the year, the best months for a visit are probably from mid-September to November when temperatures around 20-25 °C and there are just some showers now and then. Humidity drops as well.

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Avg Max8.9 °C9.9 °C14.9 °C21.1 °C26.3 °C29.8 °C33.8 °C33.6 °C28.6 °C23.1 °C17 °C11.1 °C
Avg Min1.7 °C3.4 °C7.8 °C13.7 °C18.6 °C22.3 °C25.3 °C25.1 °C20.6 °C14.9 °C9.1 °C3.6 °C
Rainfall61 mm92 mm139 mm208 mm192 mm203 mm107 mm105 mm63 mm86 mm75 mm46 mm
Rain Days13141718161310109121110

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Getting There

By Plane

Changsha Huanghua International Airport (HHA) mainly has domestic flights, but some international destinations as well (mainly Taiwan, Japan and South Korea) and is one of the fastest growing airports in the world.

By Train

Regular trains connect Changsha with other major cities, including Shanghai, Hong Kong and Beijing. Just like many other cities, Changsha will get a connection along the high-speed railway network in the next 10 years or so.

By Bus

There are three main bus terminals in Changsha: South Station, East Station and West Station. There are dozens of destinations within Hunan and outside, with major destinations also including the bigger cities further away.

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Sleep

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Changsha International Youth HostelNo.61 Gongshang Lane Dongfeng RoadHostel74
Empark Grand Hotel ChangshaNo.199 Jintai Road Kaifu District, ChangshaHOTEL-
Changsha Shuyuan International HostelNO.148 Shuyuan Road Changsha HunanHOSTEL66
Longchamp Garden Hotel ChangshaFuchu Changsha China RoadHotel-
Hunan Yuelu Mountain Youth HostelNo.50 of XinMing Road Yue Lu DistrictHOSTEL-

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Keep Connected

Internet

Wangba (联网) means internet bar in Chinese. Almost every town will have an internet bar or gaming center. The best way to spot an internet bar is to look for the 网(ba) character, which means net, and large digitized images of computer game characters. Often, there will be a sign saying Green Power in English at the entrance. Most gaming centers cost about RMB3 an hour. You prepay at the main desk and are then given a plastic card or a piece of paper. Once you are done you return the card or piece of paper and get reimbursed for the money you didn't spend. Be prepared for a place that might be dingy, basic and messy. Internet bars in China tend to get crowded starting in the late afternoon to the late evenings.

Some hotels provide access from the rooms that may or may not be free; others may provide a wireless service or a few desktops in the lounge area.
Also, quite a few cafes provide free wireless Internet service. Some cafes, even provide a machine for customer use.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to China is 86. To make an international call from China, the code is 00.

When making international phone calls it is best to buy an IP card. They typically have a value of ¥100 but sometimes can be had for as little as ¥25. The cards have printed Chinese instructions, but after dialing the number listed on the card English-spoken instructions are available. As a general indication of price, a call from China to Europe lasts around 22 minutes with a ¥100 card. Calls to the U.S. and Canada are advertised to be another 20% cheaper. There is no warning before the card runs out of minutes.

If you already have a GSM 900/1800 cellphone, you can roam onto Chinese networks, but calls will be very expensive (¥12-35/minute is typical). If you're staying for more than a few days, it will usually be cheaper to buy a prepaid Chinese SIM card; this gives you a Chinese phone number with a certain amount of money preloaded. Chinese tend to avoid phone numbers with the bad-luck digit '4', and vendors will often be happy to offload these "unsellable" SIM-cards to foreigners at a discount. If you need a phone as well, prices start around ¥100/200 used/new. Chinese phones, unlike those sold in many Western countries, are never "locked" and will work with any SIM card you put in them. China's two big operators are China Mobile and China Unicom. Most SIMs sold by the two work nationwide, with Unicom allowing Hong Kong/Macau/Taiwan usage as well. There is usually a surcharge of about ¥1/min when roaming outside the province you bought the SIM, and there are some cards that work only in a single province, so check when buying.

Post

China Post (中国邮政) is the official postal service of the People's Republic of China, operated by the State Postal Bureau of the People's Republic of China (website in Chinese only), and has more details about price to send letters, postcards and parcels, both domestically as well as internationally. The Chinese postal service is very good. Remember that in more remote places usually only one post office in a city can handle sending international boxes or letters. Also many times it might be worth having the name of the country you are trying to send to in Chinese characters, because small town people might not know what Estonia is in English. Post offices have a striking green logo and can easily be found everywhere in the cities. They are mostly open every day (including weekends!) from 8:00am to 6:00pm, though small offices might have shorter opening times, while the bigger ones in central and touristic areas are sometimes open during evenings as well.

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This is version 9. Last edited at 8:48 on Aug 21, 13 by Utrecht. 2 articles link to this page.

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