[1] Diurnal variations of summer precipitation over contiguous China are studied using hourly rain-gauge data from 588 stations during 1991–2004. It is found that summer precipitation over contiguous China has large diurnal variations with considerable regional features. Over southern inland China and northeastern China summer precipitation peaks in the late afternoon, while over most of the Tibetan Plateau and its east periphery it peaks around midnight. The diurnal phase changes eastward along the Yangtze River Valley, with a midnight maximum in the upper valley, an early morning peak in the middle valley, and a late afternoon maximum in the lower valley. Summer precipitation over the region between the Yangtze and Yellow Rivers has two diurnal peaks: one in the early morning and another in the late afternoon.