Hainan Self-Drive Adventure: a Comprehensive Guide

Hainan Self Drive Trip

Hainan, China’s southernmost province, is a popular tourist destination known for its warm tropical climate, stunning landscapes, and beautiful beaches. If you’re planning a visit to Hainan, a self-drive trip is a perfect option to explore the island at your own pace. Here’s everything you need to know to plan your Hainan self-drive trip.

Getting a rental car in Hainan

The first step in planning a Hainan self-drive trip is getting a rental car. You can easily rent a car at the airport or in the city where you plan on starting your trip. You’ll need a valid driver’s license and a credit card to rent a car. It’s important to take note of the rental company’s restrictions and deposit requirements before making your reservation.

Rent a car with a Hainan temporary driving permit

Planning your route

Hainan Self Drive Trip

Hainan is a large island, and there are many scenic routes to follow. The most popular route is to travel along the eastern coastline, which offers stunning views of the ocean and the lush green hills on either side of the road. Another popular route is to travel inland through the island’s tropical rainforests, making stops at natural attractions and local villages as you go. Or one can make a loop trip of Hainan Island in 7 days along Hainan Tourism Road.

Hainan Tourism Road

Depending on how much time you have and what you’re interested in seeing, you can plan out your route in advance, or simply take the road as it comes, or just follow our 10 Days Package along Hainan Tourism Road

Things to see and do on Hainan Island

Hainan has plenty of attractions for visitors, regardless of what interests them. Nature enthusiasts will love the natural hot springs, charming waterfalls, and beautiful beaches. Foodies should definitely try the local Hainan cuisine, famous for its seafood and tropical fruits. And history buffs can visit ancient temples and traditional villages.

Here are some of the top attractions you don’t want to miss on your Hainan self-drive trip:

Wuzhishan National Park
Nanshan Temple
Yanoda Rainforest Cultural Tourism Zone
Yalong Bay Tropical Paradise Forest Park
Sanya Tianya Haijiao

With easy transportation, one is encouraged to explore some offbeat attractions:

Tropical Rainforest Parks such as Jianfengling, Bawangling, Diaoluoshan.

Nantian Hot Springs

Nanwan Monkey Island – home to more than 2,000 macaque monkeys with stunning views of the sea.

Wuzhishan – a mountain range with its highest peak standing at 1,876 meters, offering breathtaking views of nature.

Xinglong Tropical Botanical Garden – a large, beautiful botanical garden featuring a variety of rare plants and birds.


Hainan offers a wide variety of accommodation options, including luxury resorts, budget-friendly hostels, and everything in between. If you’re planning a self-drive trip, you might want to consider staying at smaller local hotels or homestays, which are often cheaper and give a unique insight into the local culture.

Driving in Hainan and road contditions

Driving in Hainan is relatively easy, with well-maintained roads and clear signage in English and Chinese. However, you should be aware that drivers in China often drive aggressively and ignore traffic rules, so it’s important to be extra cautious while on the road. Also, make sure to keep your passport and driver’s license with you at all times while driving.

In conclusion, a self-drive trip is the best way to explore Hainan to the fullest, offering you the freedom to choose your own itinerary, travel at your own pace, and discover hidden gems off the beaten path. So, pack your bags, hit the road, and enjoy the adventure of a lifetime in beautiful Hainan!


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