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The Top Reasons to Visit China — What Makes China Special

China’s main draws that exceed other countries are: 1) the world’s richest breadth of culture, 2) the most varied and spectacular natural wonders, and 3) the most impressive architectural feats. With this size, and depth, and variety, in China you can see more in one place.

This Makes China Special:

China has the greatest number and variety of world-class tourist attractions of anywhere in the world. China’s tourist appeal is emphasized by being so culturally different from countries outside of East Asia. If you are looking for a trip that is exotic, packed full of new sights and experiences, stimulating and over all different, China is the place to go.

China has a vast amount to offer tourists: attractions galore — spectacular scenery, exotic culture, rich in history, and all with the buzz of activity and change that makes it the fastest developing country in the world.

A) The World’s Richest Breadth of Culture

Chinese KungfuChinese kungfu

China’s culture is the richest. Its language supersedes others in originality and complexity, influencing rather than taking from countries like Korea, Japan, and Vietnam. Kungfu and taichi supercede karate and thai boxing. Also consider China’s tea culture, Chinese medicine, poetry, calligraphy, opera, costume, and porcelain, before even considering the 55 (or more like 550) ethnic minorities.

  • China has a history of over 4,000 years, and a culture that is as rich as the history is long.
  • Chinese food: Food has a special meaning to the Chinese people, and Chinese food has distinctive culinary styles all its own. The emphasis is on fresh, seasonal ingredients, prepared with a minimum of fuss, with beautifully balanced color, texture, and presentation.
  • Chinese festivals: Chinese people celebrate a seemingly endless series of festivals during the course of a year. Most of these festivals take place on important dates in the Chinese traditional calendar.
  • Kungfu, also known as wushu or martial arts, is one of the most well-known examples of traditional Chinese culture.
  • Beijing Opera: As a national treasure with a history of at least 200 years, Beijing Opera is the most significant of all operas in China. It has a rich repertoire and a great number of artists.

B) Most Varied and Spectacular Natural Wonders

ZhangjiajieZhangjiajie is one of the most beautiful places in China.

As far as natural beauty goes, China goes bigger and more-varied and spectacular than any country in Asia (or the world if you count everything). Take for example Everest, the Yangtze gorges, the Taklamakan and Gobi deserts, Jiuzhaigou, Guilin, Zhangjiajie, Jilin’s Rime, and Hainan’s tropical beaches and forests. See:

C) Most Impressive Architectural Feats

The Great Wall of China,The Great Wall of China

China’s huge and numerous ancient and modern architectural feats exceed other countries for size and number, from the Great Wall, to canals, to pagodas, to palaces, to giant Buddhas; and in the present towers, dams, railways, bridges, tunnels, and many other feats of infrastructure. See:

The Top 5 Reasons to Visit China Now

Beijing hutongBeijing hutong

If ever there was a time to plan a trip to China, it's now. The Red Republic is in the midst of a major facelift, with thousands of years of history interwoven into a thriving modern economy.

Just a few years ago, big cities were still peppered with small alleys (called hutongs) and tiny corner shops. Just a few years from now, most of the small, old-fashioned alley communities will have completely given way to cutting edge skyscrapers and chic condos.

Here are 5 great reasons you should visit China and observe this astounding growth period for yourself, before it's too late.

1) It's not your average family vacation.

The Forbidden City The Forbidden City

Sure, going back to the beach is fun, year after year, but why not go somewhere absolutely, completely different in every imaginable way?

Take in a culture that's vastly different from your own… Walk through the rooms that housed ancient emperors in the Forbidden City in Beijing. Stand with the Terracotta warriors in Xi'an. Pitch a tent on the Great Wall of China.

2) Hiking a World Wonder is only the second (or third!) coolest hiking trail in China.

The Yellow MountainsThe Yellow Mountains

Like hiking? You'll love taking the adventure to the Great Wall of China. Sections of the Wall vary in terrain ensuring an enjoyable hike for families and hiking afficianados alike.

After the Great Wall, make your way down south, where you'll find the picturesque Yellow Mountains, and then continue on down to Lijiang and hike Tiger Leaping Gorge, listed in National Geographic as one of the best hikes in the world.

3) Your wallet will love you for it.

Beijing duckBeijing duck

It's easy to keep costs low when venturing to China. A glance at lodging prices will assure you that there are affordable accommodations no matter where you go or what your needs are.

Transportation is cheap as well – taxis are cheap, and public transportation is even cheaper. In Beijing, for instance, it costs just 2 RMB ($0.32 US) to ride the subway anywhere in the city.

Possibly the most enjoyable prices are local food. Enjoy a Beijing duck meal in your own private room on Beijing's famous Ghost Street for under $10 US per person, or delicious, seasoned meat on a stick called from one of the multitudes of street barbeques for about $0.30 US per stick.

4) Your taste buds will love you, too.

Sichuan hotpotSichuan hotpot

If you travel to China, gear up for some excellent food, but a word to the wise - don't expect the Chinese food you've had in your home country. We're not talking about the scorpions on a stick, or simmered cow brains, either (although if that's your fancy you're also in luck!).

Try food from various regions of China — The lamb and naan bread from Xinjiang (this writer's personal favorite!), Shanghainese soup dumplings, Beijing duck, and spicy Sichuan food are just some of the distinct flavors you should be sure to try.

5) Because your comfort zone is just, well, too comfortable.

Sure, the food is unfamiliar, and English is rarely spoken by locals, and seemingly everything about the culture is backwards from what you know, but if you're up for the challenge, you'll be rewarded with a truly spectacular experience.

Tour the Best of China with China Highlights

China Highlights' private transport serviceChina Highlights' private transport service

Our tours are customizable, so you can discover more of what you’re interested in. See our recommended first time to China tours below, or let us tailor-make your journey of discovery according to your requirements.

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