What Is the Climate in China?

Dennis Jarvis/CC-BY-SA 2.0

Due to the vast land area and highly diverse topography, the climate in China is highly varied. The different climates in China include tropical in the southern part to subarctic in the extreme north. The Tibetan highlands have an alpine climate and most of the land basins have dry and harsh desert climates.

China experiences regular rainfall each year, with precipitation increasing from southwest to northwest. The precipitation levels vary in different regions in China and can range from wet to dry. The rainy season begins in May and ends in September. The following are the five different temperature zones of China.

Plateau Climate Zone The regions of Qinghai and Tibet belong to this zone. The city of Lhasa is within this temperature zone.

Cold-Temperate Zone This zone encompasses Heilongjiang Province and part of Inner Mongolia. The city of Harbin is situated in this temperature zone.

Mid-Temperate Zone Among the provinces in this zone are Jilin, northern Xinjiang, and part of Heilongjiang, Liaoning, and Inner Mongolia. The cities of Beijing, Shenyang, Dalian and Urumqi in Mongolia are part of this temperature zone.

Warm-Temperate Zone This zone includes the middle and lower Yellow River, Shandong, Shanxi, Shaanxi and Hebei provinces. The major cities in these areas are Taiyuan, Jinan, Xiyang and Qingdao.

Subtropical Zone Situated along this temperature zone is the isotherm of Qinling Mountain-Huaihe River as well as the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Also in this temperature zone are the cities of Shanghai and Guangzhou and the Chinese administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau.

Tropical Zone This southernmost temperature zone of China includes Hainan and Yunnan provinces. The city of Haikou is in this zone.