For those of us that remained in a first-tier Chinese city over the Spring Festival holiday, it was abundantly clear that people had left – en masse.
Shops and restaurants closed, once bustling roadways sat deserted and, for once, you were able to get a seat on the metro (although Guangzhou’s flower markets were surprisingly packed).
The urban exodus that leads up to – and follows – the Chinese New Year holiday is called the chunyun period and it is regularly referred to as the largest human migration on the planet.
According to statistics circulating on Chinese media, more than 60 percent of Chinese citizens returned to their hometowns to celebrate the arrival of the Year of the Rooster and it’s estimated at least 2.98 billion trips were made.
See which cities ranked among China's top 10 emptiest over the CNY holiday below:
[Images via Sina, Netease, Eastday, Global Times, People's Daily, Weibo, China News, Hotel Nikko Suzhou]