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Learning Chinese is like learning two languages: the written character form and the spoken form, nowadays written using the English alphabet (pinyin). Learning (and remembering) Chinese characters takes considerably longer than learning spoken Chinese and its notation. For this reason the following guide concentrates on spoken Chinese.
We have prepared a collection of the most frequently used daily expressions and sentences to help you. We hope you will be successful in and enjoy communicating with Chinese people you meet using some of these phrases. See our Chinese Lessons and Famous Chinese Sayings.
See Ten Essential Phrases for Tourists in China for basic communication in Chinese.
We have prepared a collection of the most frequently used daily expressions and sentences to help you, presented in video and tabular form. We hope you will be successful in and enjoy communicating with the Chinese people you meet using some of the Chinese you can learn here.
See our Chinese lessons.
Learn Chinese by Following our videos.
Pinyin is the notation used for writing Mandarin (standard Chinese) pronunciation. (Pronunciation is not evident from looking at Chinese characters.) It serves the same purpose as the international phonetic symbols used in dictionaries to show how English words are pronounced.
Pinyin is a very useful tool to learn for getting around China. Chinese people view their characters as the true Chinese written language, but pinyin can be seen on many maps, road signs, and other notices.
Pinyin is much easier to learn, use and remember than characters, particularly if tones are ignored. Pinyin can be thoroughly learnt in a few hours, but a working knowledge of Chinese characters takes months, if not years of hard study.
See Chinese hip words to know more interesting Chinese words!
Most comprehensive museums in China have calligraphy collections. See Top Museums around China.
For travelers who are interested in the history, evolution and cultural relics of Chinese calligraphy, Museum of Chinese Characters in Anyang City, Henan Province is a good choice. The Stele Forest Museum in Xi’an City houses many works of noted ancient calligraphers as well as precious stone sculptures.