China's Tropical Hainan Province Gets a Tourism Makeover

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China is revamping its beaches in its southern island of Hainan, hoping to turn it into one of the world's top holiday getaways. Authorities are relaxing visa restrictions to make it more convenient for foreigners to vacation there.

China's Hainan Province doesn't necessarily top the list of holiday destinations, but authorities have set their sights to change just that... by giving the island a luxury makeover.

Sanya City on the south side of the island offers sun-seekers beautiful beaches and a wealth of expensive water sports.

[Yang Jinghua, Tourist from Beijing]:
"I think that China could develop Hainan into an international island destination. The experience, the beach and the sunshine are as good as those abroad. They're great."

[Rafael Baye, Belgian Tourist]:
"The sea is very nice and very nice nature here. Everything better than Guangzhou."

Authorities have even relaxed some of its entry regulations... allowing people from more than 20 countries including Russia, Germany and the United States to enter without a visa.

But figures from previous years have shown that the island's international profile is still fairly low.

The island's tourist transformation is an uphill struggle. There were persistent complaints of poor service, fake goods and rip-offs. Rapid development may also put off those seeking a secluded trip.

However, authorities hope to boost growth in Hainan's tourism industry by 2020.

It has plans to lure tourists with other attractions such as lottery industries and duty free shopping not permitted in the rest of mainland China.

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