China has an unrivalled allure for many visitors around the world who visit this country for diverse reasons. As a country with a long history and rich traditions and cultures, there are multiple opportunities for visitors to explore its many facets such as the food, music, natural and historical landmarks, and many others. No matter what brings you to China, you might want to get yourself prepared and ready before you leave for the country. Hence below are some useful pointers about China travel that will help in your trip preparations.
You should always pack according to the specific time of the year and your destination when you visit China. For instance, decent walking shoes are a must if you visit places such as the Great Wall of China which requires a great deal of walking. These attractions often have plenty of steps and uneven surfaces.
A raincoat or umbrella would also help protect you from the elements in open spaces that can be found in places such as the Forbidden City. To ward off pests during the hot and humid summer, insect repellant would come in handy. Above all, your dressing should always adapt to the weather conditions of your specific destination in the month of your visit.
Some shopping insights
The various regions and cities have their very own specialty products. Hence it is wise not to purchase everything in the first few days of your trip if you are visiting these different regions. For instance, you can get mounted butterflies in Yunnan and silk carpets in Shanghai. Bargaining is common in China and even encouraged if you want to get the best prices for the products you wish to purchase.
Food, glorious food!
If you have adventurous taste buds, the diverse selections of cuisine exclusive to different regions in China will not disappoint you. Be prepared for a unique gourmet experience, as various plant and animal parts are commonly used in many dishes. That being said, China is a food paradise utilizing a wide variety of preparation and cooking methods. This results in mouthwatering cuisines of distinct flavours. Tipping is not mandatory, although you may have to pay a service charge in some restaurants.
While you can generally expect to be safe in China and be treated with friendliness and hospitality by the locals, it is always wise to adopt necessary safeguards in the evenings and in crowded spots. Do not display your wealth unnecessarily and make sure you keep your expensive belongings in plain sight at all times. Also, beware of scams and do not fall for them by being alert and not following people whom you do not know.
When getting around on your own
If you decide to go exploring without a guide, it is recommended that you have your hotel card in your possession wherever you go. This is because the card has information of your hotel printed so that you can get directions to return to your hotel if you are lost. If you cannot speak Mandarin, riding a taxi would be much easier for you if you show the driver the name and address of your destination in Chinese. This is because many taxi drivers barely understand English.