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How to Plan a Trip to China from Australia

Every year, numerous tourists are planning their first or second trip to China from Australia to explore the mysterious Orient and spectacular landscape of East Asia. China is timeless yet innovative, a country where modern life brings convenience and prosperity, while the ancient traditions are retained… Travel to China from Australia is much easier than you think, as long as you follow our step-by-step guidance, and learn tips for China Visa, best places and time to visit, etc. 

Plan a Trip to China from Australia

Where is China?

The location of China: Both China and Australia are located in the Eastern Hemisphere of earth, but China locates in the northern part, therefore, a very different terrain and climate from Australia. In eastern Asia and west of Pacific Ocean, China borders 14 countries by land and 6 countries by sea.  

Distance from Australia to China

How far is it from Australia to China? The shortest air travel distance between the two countries is 7,448 km / 4,628 miles / 4021 nautical miles. 

Time Difference between Australia and China

Of Australia’s three time zones, the time zone of Western Australia is the same with China Time (or Beijing time).
  • Canberra is 3 hours ahead of China Time
  • Melbourne is 3 hours ahead of China Time
  • Sydney is 3 hours ahead of China Time
  • Perth is 3 hours ahead of China Time
  • Cairns is 2 hours ahead of China Time
  • Adelaide is 2.5 hours ahead of China Time

 Plan a Trip to China from Australia

Geographic Differences


GPS Coordinates (DMS)

35° 51´ 41.9760'' N

104° 11´ 43.4400'' E

25° 16´ 27.8400'' S

133° 46´ 30.4680'' E


Average Elevation

1084 m (6,037 ft)

330 m (1,083 ft)

When to Go - Best Time to Visit China

Before your trip to China from Australia, you may want to know the climate difference between the two countries and have a general idea of China climate and weather. China has the exact opposite seasons with Australia. 
Australia in Four Seasons China in Four Seasons
Spring: from September to November
Summer: from December to next February
Autumn: from March to May
Winter: from June to August
Spring: from March to May
Summer: from June to August
Autumn: from September to November
Winter: from December to next February
Most Australian travelers consider autumn (your spring season) is the best time to visit China, for two reasons: the weather is good, sunny and warm, and it is the most colorful season in China. Almost all destinations are at its best in autumn. >> Other good time to visit China
Time to avoid visiting China:
  • China National Day Holiday, seven days from October 1 – 7
  • May Day, 3 days from May 1 – 3
  • Chinese New Year, around 15 days of celebration from late Jan. to early Feb. 
Tips: If you want to experience festival atmosphere, the very traditional Chinese culture, and don’t mind crowds and can afford a higher price, you can still visit China during Chinese Lunar New year. 

china tour Australia

China Visa for Australian Citizens

All foreign tourists, including Australian passport holders, need to get a visa to travel to China. You can summit your Chinese visa application to a China Embassy or consulate in Australia. 
The visa requirements for Australian Citizens travel to China: L-visa is for tourist purpose, which allows you a maximum 30-days stay in China. To apply for it, you need to prepare the necessary documents such as your valid passport, passport photo, a completed visa application form, China tour Itinerary, round-way flights and hotel reservation. 
Processing time: it normally takes 4 to 7 working days to process the visa. 
Australian citizens can enjoy visa-free access to Hong Kong, and can stay for up to 90 days. If traveling to Macau, they can stay for up to 30 days without a visa.    
You may also be interested in:

China visa for Australian travelers

Entry Cities - How to Get to China from Australia

The major entry cities for Australian travelers to China are Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. But with increasing direct flights from Australia to China, by far (2017) Chengdu, Hangzhou, Kunming, Xian, Chongqing, Nanjing, Changsha and several other cities are also connected with Australia. So for people planning a trip to China from Australia, now you have more choices on the gateway cities and travel routes. 
You can take a non-stop flight to Kunming from Sydney for Stone Forest and other popular destinations of Yunnan, or to Xian to see the UNESCO heritage Terra-cotta Army. If you desire to have a close contact with giant panda, fly from Melbourne to Chengdu directly.    

Australia to China non-stop flights

Non-stop Flights to China from Australia

Currently there are direct flights to China from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and Cairns, Canada, operated by Qantas Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, China Southern Airlines, Hainan Airlines, China Eastern Airlines and other airlines. 
Departure City in Australia
Arrival City in China
Notes for Schedule

Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Nanjing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Hangzhou, Wuhan, Kunming, Changsha, Xian, Xiamen, Fuzhou

Daily flights from Sydney to Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou

Beijing, Shanghai Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Chengdu
Daily flights from Melbourne to Shanghai, Hong Kong
Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou
All daily flights

Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou

Daily flights from Perth to Hong Kong
Adelaide Hong Kong 5 flights a week
Cairns Shanghai, Hong Kong Serveral flights a week
Notes: The air route and flight schedule are for reference only. Please check the official website of each airline for the accurate information and the airfares.  

Where to Go – the Best Places to Visit in China for Australian Travelers

Before starting your China tour from Australia, you should have an idea of where to go and what to see in China. For decades, Top China Travel have offered tour packages for numerous clients from Australia, who, in turn, help us select the best destinations in China for your consideration.

Beijing, Xian and Shanghai Are the Most Popular Destinations

Beijing: If it is your first time trip to China, go visit Beijing, to see the ancient wonders of Great Wall and Forbidden City. And there are much more to explore in this 3000-year-old city: the old Beijinger’s life at hutong and courtyards, amazing Olympic structures, the fun-filled night life, various kinds of traditional foods....
Xian: Many Australian travelers say that they love the history of China. If you are one of them, don’t miss Xian, an ancient capital of 13 dynasties in Chinese history. Visitors always find Xian full of history and culture, because of the Terracotta Warriors, marvelous old city wall, and the well-preserved ancient architectures.
Shanghai: The city itself is an international metropolis, but retains the old traditions, old streets and old dwelling houses. Many travel to Shanghai to look for clues of history memories, and the newest fashion as well. 

Trip to China from Australia

More Recommended Destinations for Australian Tourists

Zhangjiajie: It has been another hot destination in China in recent years. The breathtaking mountain views it offers that totally differ from those of Australia. The quartz sandstone peak forest landform is rare on earth, and a skywalk on the Glass Bridge is nerve-wracking yet totally rewarding. 
Guilin: You may not hear its name before, but you must have seen numerous images and videos of Guilin landscape. Li River cruise to Yangshuo and Longji Rice Terraces are the must-see sights.
Chengdu: Your dream of an intimate contact with pandas can be realized in Chengdu, the sweet hometown of giant pandas. Besides, it is a charming cultural city, where visitors will find ancient streets, architectures, quaint tea houses and beautiful old towns. 
Zhangye: On the ancient Silk Road, Zhangye impresses the world with the Danxia Landform Park resembling a rainbow mountain. Get your camera ready for some stunning photographs when the colorful mountains are in the radiance of the sun and stand out clearly against the sky. 

trip to china

Recommended Tour Packages to China from Australia

Guided China tour or free independent travel (FIT) in China? The first one is the better one. China is a very different country from Australia. If you don’t speak Chinese, you may encounter unexpected difficulties or troubles. If you have a tight budget or you plan to travel alone, you are encouraged to join a group tour. Our small group tour packages are well crafted and taking you to the top destinations of China. >> Check our clients’ reviews on TripAdvisor
Below recommended private China tours are for your reference. The detailed itinerary can be adjusted to meet your requirements. Or you can contact us to tailor make a China tour from Australia. 

Destinations: Beijing, Xian, Shanghai
Highlight Attractions: China Great Wall, Forbidden City, Olympic Park, Temple of Heaven, hutong, Terracotta Warriors, Ancient City Wall of Xian, the Bund, Oriental Pearl TV Tower, Yuyuan Garden
Why Recommended: The tour package is especially suitable for first timers to China. You will travel to the big-name landmarks and experience the authentic local life.

12 Days China Panda Tour
Destinations: Beijing, Xian, Chengdu, Guilin, Shanghai
Highlight Attractions: Mutianyu Great Wall, Palace Museum, Beijing hutong, Terracotta Amy Museum, Dujiangyan Panda Base, Sichuan Cuisine Museum, Jiezi Ancient Town, Reed Flute Cave, Li River, Yangshuo, Shanghai Tower
Why Recommended: Discover the traditions dating back to thousands of years, have fun with giant pandas, learn to cook Chinese dishes, and indulge in picturesque natural scenery.

Destinations: Beijing, Xian, Lhasa, Shanghai
Highlight Attractions: Forbidden City, Mutianyu Great Wall, Bird Nest, Terracotta Warriors, Potala Palace, Jokhang Monastery, Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery, Oriental Pearl TV Tower, Yuyuan Garden
Why Recommended: We promise you a China tour of history, culture and beautiful landscape. The sacred land of Lhasa is for you to discove...

Destinations: Beijing, Zhangjiajie, Mt. Huangshan, Shanghai
Highlight Attractions: Mutianyu Great Wall, Palace Museum, Temple of Heaven, Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, Tianmen Mountain, Yellow Mountain, Yuyuan Garden, Oriental Pearl TV 
Why Recommended: Explore iconic destinations of China and the most beautiful mountains:  'floating Hallelujah Mountain' and Tianmen Mountain in Zhangjiajie, and Yellow Mountain nearby Shanghai. 

World Travelers' Reviews on Our China Tours

Since our company was founded in 1959, we have arranged China tour packages for many Australian travelers, e.g. Mr. Ralph Arbon (2 pax), who took a Great Wall Hiking Tour in China: 
“Helen and I arrived home safely last night. We wish to thank you for your assistance with arranging everything for us in China - it was all very well organised. We found that you through your role in TCT was fantastic, all our accommodation was really great e.g. great locations, great staff in each location, English speaking, well presented inside and fantastic buffet breakfasts…

In summary we believe that TCT provided a quality value added service and would recommend TCT to our friends and anyone who would look at TCT on the internet.”

Travel Tips for Australian Tourists to China 

Before your trip to China from Australia, you have to do all the preparations, think over what to pack, the required documents for your China travel, some necessary medicines, etc. Here below we list the useful tips for China travel preparations and when traveling in China. 
► What to Pack: passport, China Visa, suitable clothes, toiletries, the luggage suggestions, medicine, the contact info of your hotel and guide in China, etc
► Survival Chinese: Learn some frequently used Chinese words and phrases
► How to use phone & access internet in China: and tips for access Facebook, Instagram, Gmail, etc.
Safety Tips in China: especially useful for women travelers, solo travelers, and people taking a train in China
Tips for particular travelers, such as senior travelers, disabled travelers, and those traveling with kids
Australia Embassy in China, including those in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Hong Kong