China travel guide: What to know before you go |


The Ultimate Guide

Conquer this vast nation and all that it holds with this expert guide on what to see and do in China.

Look carefully at China and you’ll find there’s much beauty within, far beyond the crowded, bustling cities. Its countryside hosts a haven of tranquility, with rolling plains, paddy fields carved into mountains and lakes and deserts that blend seamlessly into the horizon. It’s 14,000 kilometres of coastline features cliffside drops, port towns and sandy beaches. Even within major city centers, historical spaces, monuments and awe-inspiring temples wheedle their way out of the woodwork.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Read on to discover what else China hides behind its cityscape appearance.

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Travel tips for first time visitors

A new country can be intimidatiing for even the most seasoned of travelers. That’s why reading up on where you’re traveling to is essential to ensure you’re not stuck up a creek without a paddle. Here a few tips that you should consider before traveling to the Far East:

  • Research. Sounds simple enough, but some in-depth research about your destination is a must. If you go without any prior knowledge, you’ll likely get lost or even worse, offend the locals. Knowing about the culture and common etiquette is a must when traveling to a country that isn’t your own — you don’t want to be disrespectful.
  • Plan accordingly. Have your passport and visa documentation taken care of well before you’re ready to go. Look for attractions and sites you’d like to visit prior to leaving so you’re not wasting your valuable time planning what to do while you’re in China. While public transportation is easily available, if you want to rely on private services, make sure to arrange your plans in advance.
  • Breaking the language barrier. Obviously you won’t be able to learn the language in a snap, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn some key phrases before you go. Picking up a phrasebook or pocket dictionary can be extremely useful when trying to communicate with the locals. A translator app on your mobile device can be a lifesaver if you’ve got a question that you’re having a tough time relaying.
  • Medical concerns. Travel insurance is another small cost to your trip, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. In the unfortunate case that something happens to you while you’re traveling, travel insurance can help alleviate costs for missed flights or medical bills. Also, packing your own prescriptions is highly recommended as pharmacies may not be able to provide the medicine or drugs you’re are used to.

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