The city of Sanya, China may easily be the most beautiful place on earth. It’s name means “the end of the sky and ocean.” The weather is summer tropical year round and is home to the most beautiful beaches imaginable. Sanya is an experience to exceed all others.
I spent a few days in the city on respite after a summer of teaching in Hainan City at the center of China’s Hainan Island. A trip to the beach was a much needed break by summer’s end with the hustle of the crowded city. Most of my summer was spent in the classroom, getting to and from and a few weekend visits to the northern shore where industry dominated and the waters were unfortunately polluted.
I have traveled all over the world for work, vacation and humanitarian efforts. I sincerely find beauty in every place I go, even in the dumps of Nairobi and Tegucigalpa, because when the land does not show its beauty due to poor management or abuse, the people and their cultures certainly do. However, Sanya wins on both counts with the most courteous and lovely people gifted with hospitality, gracious spirit and gentle manner. The land speaks for itself. Actually it does not speak, it shouts!
Sanya is located on the southern most tip of the Island of Hainan which sits in the South China Sea 698 km from Vietnam. It is a premier vacation destination where luxurious resorts are scattered throughout. It is also the home of the Miss World Organization. Each year talented and beautiful contestants from over 100 countries come to the island where they compete in the areas of fitness, beauty, intelligence and humanitarian projects to be crowned as the most beautiful young woman in the world. Could there be a more fitting location?
The beaches in Sanya are breath-taking, whether developed as a resort as most are, or in the natural state. Imagine standing on the beach surrounded by mountains to the left and to the right and directly in front you are confronted with the bluest of blue water; soft waves lapping up onto the crystal white sand. It appears and feels other-worldly like a stage for a movie or a manufactured setting for a beauty pageant.
Because the island is facing the open sea it is closely monitored. I found this out when I took a run down an undeveloped area and was approached to inquire of my intentions and identity.This was the one negative aspect of my visit, although it was not so much of an interference as a surprise. In retrospect, it was a minor issue but consider it a kind gesture to prepare other travelers.
Years after my visit I can still close my eyes and feel, smell, see and hear the beach. Those days are a bookmark in my journey of life that mark the epitome of luxury, serenity and beauty. If ever your travels take you near, make time to visit Sanya, China. The experience of the most beautiful city on earth and the generosity of its people will make an impact on your memory and spirit like no other destination.