The Strangest Chinese Customs That Every Tourist Should Know About

By Jack Yang / March 5, 2017

China is definitely one of those countries that you should visit at least once in your life. It holds many attractions for tourists and is generally rich in history and culture. But finding yourself in China might make you wonder about their strange ways. If you do wind up in any province, city or region in China, it’s best to learn their ways then to get the titles of biggest tourist in China. Some of their ways and customs may strike you as odd at first but believe me when is say that everything has a meaning.

Chopstick Placement

Chopsticks are the only cutlery you’ll see in China, well at least in most parts. There is one thing and one thing only that you should avoid when using chopsticks in crowded restaurants. Leaving your chopsticks upright in your rice bowl. Apparently, it will bring some bad luck to you, and your companions as leaving chopsticks like this is the way rituals were performed where people were making offerings to the dead.

Burping is OK

If you do find yourself in a crowded restaurant, make sure that you burp after you finish your meal and give a significant look at the chef and all the patron of the restaurant. Burping in Chinese tradition is considered as a sign of gratitude and that you’re satisfied with a meal. Talking about strange, right. So don’t forget to pay compliments once you’re done eating.

Never Running Out of Tea

If you like tea, then you’ll love this custom. In every coffee shop, restaurant or even at street vendors where you can sit and enjoy your tea the service will always refill your cup. As you finish your cup of tea and take a moment to notice that amazing chandelier hanging above your table at the restaurant, the chances are that you’ll have a full cup of tea once again without even noticing that someone refilled it.

Refusing Gifts

Found friends while spending time in China and want to buy them a gift as a sign of appreciation for showing you the city? That’s great. But don’t be offended if they refuse the gift. This is another custom that may strike you as odd. Once you present them with a gift, it will take a considerable time of persuading them to accept it, as they will constantly refuse it until they do accept it at the end. But don’t’ be offended as this is their way of showing how humble they are.

The Famous Shaolin Monastery: The Hidden Temple of China

By Jack Yang / February 26, 2017

If you’re traveling a lot, you’ll start to appreciate historical marvels that every country, region, and city has to offer. China is full of tourist attractions, but there is one that isn’t visited as much and should remain hidden. Yes, you’ve guessed it, it’s the Shaolin temple. So what’s so special about this temple?

A historical monument of Dengfeng

Shaolin monastery and Pagoda forests that surround it was described by the greatest treasure of China by many Buddhists and spiritually awakened travelers. Its construction dates back 1500 years when it was founded by Fang Lu0Hao. It remains the main temple of the Shoaling school of Buddhism to this very day. Visiting this temple is a life changing experience as no other place lets you see Buddhist monks and their lifestyle.

Zen through Meditation

Achieving the “enlightened” state is no easy task, but visiting this temple may shine some light on the topic and make you understand how to get there faster. Although Shaolin monks live differently than the rest of population, their way of living proves to be much healthier and beneficial to the body and mind. Buddhism is more of a philosophy than a religion, and the more you know about it, the less will you consider it as religion. The rules that Buddhists follow are simply guidelines to leading a healthier and happier life. And if that means that you should give up fast food and use technology to that extent that you’re using, then by all means at least consider their ways.

Feeling Enlightened yet?

Just try to spend a week in a Shaolin temple, and you’ll notice the changes that you’ve made and how your life is changing for the better. You can learn a thing or two about meditation as well hanging out with these guys, as their gurus are considered as best teachers of Buddhism. Miles away from technology and civilization this is the perfect place to start your spiritual journey and reinvent yourself if that is what you’re seeking. Visiting shoaling temple in China will surely change the way you look at things, and if you’re serious enough, you can become a Buddhist monk yourself.

Our 3 Favorite Places We Visited in China

By Jack Yang / February 19, 2017

Camping the Great Wall

After we met in Beijing, we decided we would like to take our adventure to a new level, camping on the Great Wall of China. But, the wall being so long, it’s not always easy making a plan on how to go on about it, since there are many different areas you can visit and camp on. If you were anywhere close to the Badaling section, you would know that it’s by far the most popular tourist spot, with suitable tourist infrastructure and restored facades. Gubeikou village is the last place where you can purchase necessities for camping, so make sure to stock up on supplies, and to bring your own tent and a sleeping bag if you are planning to camp the Great Wall.

Jiuzhai Valley National Park

Translated as “Valley of nine fortified villages”, Jiuzhaigou is a national reserve and a national park in the Sichuan province. With breathtaking sights and colorful nature, Jiuzhaigou is like a heaven on earth, so beautiful it was put on UNESCO World Heritage list in the nineties and is in category five of landscape protection. The Zharu valley is the tourist place in Jiuzhaigou, and it begins with a Buddhist monastery and ends with a group of lakes. Definitely one of the most beautiful examples of nature and a great romantic site to visit with your loved one.

Temple of Heaven

Located in Chongwen district in Beijing, this temple was used as a place for Heaven Worship Ceremony, and it is the largest existing example of Chinese sacrificial buildings. The Northern part is built in such a way that it stands higher than the southern part, following an old Chinese thought that the heaven is higher and earth is lower. It covers the area of almost 3 million square meters, and it is larger than the Forbidden City. The temple itself is enclosed by a wall, but the northern edges of the wall are circular. Visiting Temple of Heaven is not a one day deal, so if you plan to visit it, prepare yourself to stay more than one day.

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