“Let China sleep, for when she awakes, she will shake the world.” -Napoleon
Of all the destinations in the world, China has recently become a rising superstar. Why has it become the number one destination for those wishing to tour Asia? The answer is simple. China has something for everyone. Adventure travelers, medical tourists, cyclers, bird watchers, backpackers, high rollers, and everything in-between can all find destinations in China which will quench their travel desires. Here are the top reasons China is growing in popularity as a tourist destination:
1. Safety - Even though China has just under 1.4 billion people, it is still remarkably safe. Instances of violent crimes are rare, and even rarer towards foreigners. Outside of the major cities you will find people to be extremely welcoming towards foreigners. Be prepared to make lots of friends, especially in rural areas.
2. Chinese History, Culture, and Art - If you are interested in Culture, China is loaded with historical interest points. The major cities in China are loaded with stunning architecture (both ancient and modern) and world class museums. If you are willing to travel around a bit you will find dozens of ancient cities scattered around the country. Many of these towns are free of other foreign tourists, and can easily consume days of your time for exploration. Chinese culture is very different from Western culture, and this is an experience in itself. Getting face to face with a culture different from their own allows one to expand their global perspective.
3. China is affordable - If you are willing to stay in hostels and eat local food, China can be very affordable. Larger cities such as Beijing and Shanghai require caution when it comes to budgeting. Staying in dorm beds in larger cities is key to stretching your budget. Second tier cities offer affordable hostels and hotels. Hotel rooms in rural areas are generally inexpensive.
4. Great Nightlife - You never know what your getting into when it comes to China's nightlife. When you tour Asia you will find great nightlife. China is no exception and offers the full spectrum from top to bottom. Shanghai and Beijing has world class nightclubs, DJs, and venues. Small towns offer fantastic bars with character, friendly locals, and cheap drinks.
5. Chinese Food - The amount of foods available to eat is mind boggling. Chinese culinary styles are divided by region and are each uniquely different. Because of Chinas long history, almost every city has a unique specialty and one can taste the change in culinary styles while traveling. Be prepared to let everything you know about American Chinese food go; you will be surprised at how diverse the food is!
6. Unexpected Welcomes - Because there are still so few foreigners in areas outside of the major cities, you can expect that you will draw attention. Don't be surprised if people are staring at you like they've never seen a foreigner. Expect to make new friends with people wising to practice their English, sharing their favorite NBA team, or just saying "hello".
There are countless reasons why China deserves a stop if you are planning a trip to tour Asia. If you are interested, decide what type of travel you prefer. If you are a budget traveler then spend some time reading through our itineraries for ideas on where to go and what to see. Good luck!