Is there a beach in Fuzhou?
People will tell you about the beautiful beaches in Pingtan, or how nice the ocean is in Xiamen. But what about Fuzhou? On the map it appears to be close to the ocean. Is there a beach in Fuzhou? The short answer is no; however, there is one in Fuzhou’s neighbor city, Changle. If you have ever flown into or out of Fuzhou’s airport, then you have been to Changle, because Fuzhou’s airport is actually in Changle, not Fuzhou.
What to expect
So the nearest beaches to Fuzhou are the ones in Changle. If you’re looking for a Miami-style beach with all the restaurants, bars, and shops and hot babes in bikinis, you will be sorely disappointed. However, for the purposes of simply seeing the ocean, playing in the waves or walking on the beach, Changle’s beaches will suffice. And an added bonus is that a round trip to the beach can be done in half a day.
When can I go?
The easiest beach to get to for those who do not have a car is the one near the airport. This beach is accessible both early in the morning or late in the evening; so you can plan your trip based on your schedule, the weather and personal preference.
Once there, you will not see many shops or facilities, but there are a line of restaurants selling sea food dinners. In these restaurants there are restrooms too, if you need one. The restaurants are a pleasant place to eat and rest; besides sea food they also have vegetable and noodle dishes. There also maybe places open where you can buy drinks, depending on the season and if the shopkeeper feels like it.
Is it crowded?
There will be more people at this beach when school is out in the months of July and August and not so many at other times. And don’t worry, even in July and August, it’s not really crowded. This beach is not considered a popular destination to Chinese people. It is not as beautiful and famous as other beaches, and it is a little dirty due to people not picking up their trash. However, there are occasional parties held at the beach throughout the summer.
What should I bring and not bring?
Deciding what to bring of course depends on what you are doing. Do you plan to eat there or bring your own food? Are you going to swim? What time of day are you going? Etc.
Here’s a list that may help you out:
What to Bring – Some Ideas
- Sunscreen – If you are planning to arrive at the beach before 4:00pm, you’ll probably want your sunscreen.
- Toilet paper – if you have been in China any amount of time, you already know this.
- Towel – If you are or aren’t swimming, a towel is still a good idea because it provides a place to sit. Just throw it on the sand and there you go. If you are swimming you may consider bringing two towels.
- Money but not too much – I’d say bring enough money for transportation and any food or drinks you plan to buy
- Change of clothes and shoes – This is highly recommended if you swim. Even if you are just setting on the beach, you’re going to get sandy at the least. And wet, sandy shoes are no fun to walk in, so it may be worth it to bring an extra pair of dry flip flops for the trip back. Note: If you are the type of person who likes to climb the rocks at the beach, then wear strap on shoes, not flip flops.
- A plastic bag – You’ll need to put your wet clothes in this.
- Band-Aids – The rocks can be sharp; it’s easy to cut yourself. Also, shoes are more likely to rub blisters when they are wet.
- An old sock –See “Where to Leave My Stuff” below…
- Snacks – While there are seafood restaurants at the beach, there are no places to buy snacks such as chips or fruit. Keep in mind, the beach always makes people hungrier than usual.
- Water –Last but not certainly not least, you will want to make sure you have water when you go to the beach. You will get thirsty, and buying water there may not be convenient or even possible.
What Not to Bring
- Cell Phones – most of the time they don’t get reception at the beach, so especially if you have a smart phone, I’d recommend leaving it at home.
- Jewelry, Watches, Valuables, Passport – Unless someone will constantly be supervising your belongings, don’t bring things that are likely to get stolen
Where can I leave my stuff?
Unfortunately there are no lockers at this beach, and no certain safe place to set stuff while you swim. If you don’t want to lug your possessions around the whole time, here are some ideas that might help you out.
If you want to set your stuff on the beach and swim, I recommend taking as much stuff out of your bag as possible. That way someone cannot just grab your bag and run off with everything. One idea also is to put some backup money (enough to get home) in an old sock and set it under the rest of your stuff. That way if someone were to take something, they most likely would not bother to pick up an old sandy sock.
Find a place where you can easily keep an eye on your belongings even if you are in the water. If you are there at night, find a well-lit spot to set your stuff before walking along the beach or standing in the waves.
Beware, if you are at the beach when the tide is coming in(in the evening), set your stuff as far away for the water as possible! Keep a close eye on your things because the tide moves fast! And the ocean tide will not even leave a dirty sock behind.
How to Get There
This is probably the most essential part of this entire essay. Here is a step by step process to get to the nearest beach from the inner city of Fuzhou.
- Apollo Hotel – First go to the Apollo Hotel to catch the airport bus. Most taxi drivers will know where to go when you say Apollo. The bus to the airport leaves every 10 to 15 minutes or so. It cost 25 rmb per person to go to the airport. The ride takes about 45 minutes, but the bus is comfortable and air-conditioned.
- Airport – Once at the airport, you may want to make use of the bathrooms there. It’s a good place to change into your swimming clothes if you don’t already have them on.
- Beware of Taxis – When you arrive at the airport, a gang of taxi drivers will solicit you and want to charge you 100 rmb to go to the “Hai Bian 海边” or seaside. This beach is less than 3km away, that is walking distance and about a 7 minute drive. So the normal rate to go this far might be 12 rmb at most. So please do not pay these taxis 100 rmb to go there! You might possibly be able to negotiate a rate of 30 rmb, but let me just say, these guys are real jerks!
Motor Cars– I suggest skip the taxis and walk just outside the airport’s main drop off-area and look for a tuk tuk, which is kind of a little motor car. These guys will charge you about 20 rmb to take you to the beach. That’s a fair price. Plus, taking a tuk tuk is always an adventure in and of itself.
- Walking – If it is a nice day or evening, it is possible to walk there. Just leave the airport, there is only one road leaving the airport. You will want to walk on the left-hand side of the road. Just keep walking till you come to a small road on your left. Take that road and there you will see fruit venders, other people walking and some tuk tuks. From there you can get a tuk tuk to take you the rest of the way to the beach for around 5 rmb if he is already headed that direction.
What about the other beaches in Changle?
This article focuses on the beach nearest the airport, but there are other beaches to go to in Changle. One beach which can be located on Google Maps by searching “Changle Sea Shore Resort, Changle, Fuzhou, Fujian, China” , has an assortment of restaurants, bungalows and hotels. Things in this area are open late in the summer, till around 2:00am. The problem with the beach is that to get there you will need to hire a driver, have a friend with a car, have your own motor bike, etc. I highly advise against taking a taxi from the Changle airport, (see “How to Get There” below). To get from the airport to this other beach, it is about 25 kilometers and 37 minutes, anyway this is Google’s estimate.
Keep watching Fuzhouexat.com for more updates on Changle beaches.
I hope that was helpful. Feel free to post any questions, comments, or further advice you have here, on the forums or the contact form.