China is a country in East Asia with the world’s largest population, exceeding 1.4 billion people. China spans five geographical time zones and borders fourteen countries by land, the most of any country in the world, tied with Russia.
1.4 billion (2020)
Mandarin, Yue (Cantonese), Xiang(Hunanese)
It is considered polite to give or receive items using both hands.
Don’t bow in greeting. A handshake is more than enough (also common in Japan or Korea)
Top three foods the country is known for:
- Peking roasted duck,
- Kung pao chicken (Sichuan-style speciality with dried chilli, cucumber and fried peanuts/cashews),
- Dim sum,
- Hand pulled noodle soups
- Mapo Tofu (inc. bean curd, garlic sprouts, broad bean sauce, chilli powder, soy sauce)
- Hot Pot
What the country is known for :
- The Great Wall of China,
- The Forbidden City and the Imperial Palace,
- The Li River,
- The Classical Gardens of Suzhou,
- Giant pandas,
- Manufacturing powerhouse
More About China
I spent a few hours in China in 2019 during a layover on my way to New Zealand. I was intrigued to have a glimpse of the inside of The Red Dragon. Apart from the obvious curiosity about the super power that is really giving the western countries a run for their money in economic stacks and investment, I was also interested in the opportunity to experience a taster of Chinese culture for myself.
With a population of over a billion people, China has the world’s largest population. There is a debate as to how many megacities (cities with a population of over 10 million) are in China but Shanghai is the largest with over 25 million inhabitants. Along with Italy, China has the highest number of UNESCO sites in the world such as The Great Wall of China, Summer Palace, the Temple of Heaven and the Forbidden City to name a few therefore if interested in history and culture there is lots to pick from. I visited the Great Wall of China and walked up and town for about 3.5hrs. The structure is endless and magnificent.
China has had so much influence in many parts of Asia, and I guess the curiosity is really, what is it like living in China? With the things that they produce for the rest of the world, what are they producing for themselves? The country is known for its innovation and efficiency which has resulted in the country manufacturing goods for use locally and abroad. Some iconic inventions made in China that have brough simplicity and fascination worldwide include silk, fireworks, tea the compass and electronic cigarettes.
Although I did not get a chance to experience it, I am very keen to explore different cuisines around China as they have a variety of culinary offerings in each region. I’m certain there is more interesting flavours for me to discover than the scrap of the surface offerings we get from the local Chinese take-away or Chinese buffets in the west.
The Chinese New Year/Lunar New Year/Spring Festival is the country’s biggest holiday with celebrations lasting up to two weeks long. It is a time for letting go of the old and welcoming in the new with praise and thanksgiving. Lanterns, dragons and the colour red are popular sightings during this time of the year. Each year is named after an animal on the 12 Chinese zodiac animals (dog, snake, dragon, tiger, ox, rabbit, pig, rat, rooster, monkey, cat, horse).
Do you speak English?
Voce fala Ingles?
Where is the toilet?
Onde e o banheiro
May I please have some water?
Posso por favor ter um pouco de agua?
I would like some food please
Eu gostaria de um pouco de comida por favor
Where can I get a taxi?
Onde posso pegar um taxi?
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