Dalian has many tourist destinations and the Dalian Tourism Bureau has a wealth of information for travelers at http://www.dltour.gov.cn/.
What are the major places of interest in Dalian?
The city center has the Sun Yat-sen Square, People's Square and Shengli (Victory) Square. Inside the city, most visitors go to Xinghai Square, the Ocean Park at Tiger Beach, the Coastal Road, Forest Zoo and Fujiazhuang (Village of the Fu Family) Park. The Jinshitan (Golden Rock Beach), Discovery Kingdom theme park and Bingyugou Valley are located in the suburbs.
Which aquarium offers more value?
The Tiger Beach has the Polar Aquarium, which is the city's only 5A scenic spot, where the white whales and dolphins perform. The Joy Theater near the aquarium has sea lions and walruses. Nearby, the Bird Forest's draws are the performances by parrots and other birds.
The Shengya Aquarium is located in Xinghai Park. It has an 118-m-long underwater channel where one can see shows by dolphins and divers dressed as mermaids. The Dinosaur World Amusement Park nearby is a favorite among children.
Mounted policewomen patrolling Dalian's neat streets is a famous attraction.
Are there hotels where one can see the sea?
Dalian faces the sea on three sides, but not all hotels offer sea-view rooms. The Xinghai Holiday Hotel, Fujiazhuang Coastal Resort and several other hotels on the coast have such rooms. Visitors need to double check before making their reservations. During the peak season, one needs to reserve at least 10 days in advance.
What's the best season to visit?
From late April to mid-Oct. Many people say Dalian is the most beautiful in Sept and early Oct.
When can people swim in the sea?
Most visitors find the sea comfortable between July and Sept. During the weeklong National Holiday in early Oct, the water could be too cold for swimmers entering the sea for the first time.
What should people wear in early Oct in Dalian?
The temperature difference is sharp at dawn and noon. It's okay to wear an overcoat over a T-shirt. Usually, sweaters are unnecessary.
Can people skate and ski in Dalian?
Most skating and skiing rinks begin operations in early Dec and are open until end-Feb. Besides the skating rinks inside the city, one can visit the Anpo and Minhu skiing slopes in the suburbs.
What special food can be found here?
There are many varieties of marine products here ranging from fish to shells and others. Local people have invented many ways to prepare them, such as steaming, frying and barbecuing. Seafood is often cooked with egg, flour and vegetables.
Are there homestay arrangements?
The local government encourages people to rent their spare rooms to tourists, which is an effective way of supplementing the busy hotels at high season. There are also apartment hotels where visitors can cook fresh seafood by themselves.
Is public transport convenient?
Yes. Most buses cost 1 yuan. One can reach most places of interest in the city within half an hour. The taxi service is also good. Every passenger seat has an icon of an animal with a number, so if you remember this icon, you can easily find the cab in case you forget something. The airport is about 12 km from the city center. The taxi fare comes to less than 30 yuan.
What recreational facilities are available to the locals at night?
Most locals gather at squares such as Xinghai to dance, chat or watch shows. The Shengli (Victory) Square has a famous underground snack street.
(China Daily 09/10/2009 page68)