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China Guide: Spend Less, Do More

Welcome to China

China-Great-Wall-of-ChinaChina is so incredibly large and has such a long interesting and geographically dispersed history that any journey to any part of this cultural wealth of treasures will be nothing less than a grand adventure. Ancient customs and temples are infused with vibrant city life inviting you to modern malls and local markets and to the delights of eight delicious Chinese cuisines. Nightlife comprises trendy bars and clubs, mind-blowing acrobatic performances, drama, theatre and arts. China is a country of many shades, and the accommodation available in this country is, too. There a wide variety of five-star facilities available in the urban centres of the country, but a low cost affair for the family can also be easily found. Whether they are coming to China for a vacation or business, visitors will have no trouble finding a suitable hotel.

Top Things about China

There are few countries with the same famed history that China has, and this is reflected by the many monuments and landmarks located in the country. Being the world oldest continuous civilization, history lures around every corner. Whether you decide on a classical China tour, a nature and wildlife trek, an adventurous discovery, a tea party or a pilgrimage, majestic China will deliver and you will find yourself at times in Ming gardens, on skyscrapers, on exotic beaches, in oriental temples, in scenic caves, and on snowy peaks.

China-Forbiden-city-at-nightHot destinations include Beijing - China's capital housing the most amazing royal historical sites such as the Great Wall, the Forbidden City and the Temple of Heaven - and the breathtaking city of Guilin, China's top landscape resort and a paradise for hikers and backpackers. Xian is the former imperial city of China. It was the site of the Terracotta Warriors and is often considered the eighth wonder of the world. Fashionable Shanghai and prosperous Guangzhou are equally worth the trip and adventurous souls will always have Tibet, the massive snowy 'Roof of the World' that is known as a Buddhist pilgrimage destination.

Other popular landmarks in China include the lovely Karst Mountains, which can be viewed from the county of Yangshuo. The ancient city of Hangzhou, which is built around the scenic West Lake, features gardens as far as the eye can see, as well as streets that are paved with history. West Lake is an UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

China-Chengdu-Jin-river-bridgeFor travellers who are interested in taking in the country’s natural beauty, Jiuzhaigou Valley is certainly one way to go. This site is known for having lakes that are see-through clear, as well as waterfalls with several layers. Because of the Tibetan communities that can be found throughout the valley, this area is also a good place to take in the Tibetan culture. 

Speaking of Tibetan culture, Potala Palace is a popular destination thanks to the fact that it was once the continual place of residence of the Dalai Lama, the traditional leader of Buddhism in Tibet. This site has become a museum, but its sheer size gives visitors a sense of the grandeur of old China.

Popular cities in China have different attractions and sightseeing, so planning your China tour is essential.

Best Cities to Visit

There cannot be a discussion of the cities in China without talking about Shanghai, the Chinese city with the largest population. In this city are housed many of the most sought after tourist destinations. The centre of Shanghai is home to The Bund, which is an area of the city on the water. This part of the city used to be the business centre, and now is still home to some of the most famous buildings in the country, including the Asia Building and the Bank of China building. The styles of architecture in this part of the city are widely varied, from Romanesque to Neo-Classical to Art Deco. In fact, the city of Shanghai has one of the most substantial gatherings of Art Deco buildings in the world.

Beijing is also a city with a rich historical heritage, and one of the locations that highlights this is Tiananmen Square. This is still the world’s largest public square, and can be found on the way in to the Forbidden City.

Another popular tourist location in Beijing is the Summer Palace, which is an UNESCO World Heritage Site, mostly thanks to its amazing ornate gardens. A stroll around this site allows visitors to get a glimpse of Chinese history, as well as marvel at the attention to detail that was taken up by 18th century gardeners. The way the garden is arranged reflects the styles of garden popular in Chinese palaces at the time.

Events

Football is a popular sport in China, and as such, the China PR national football team is a squad that is followed closely by the country’s citizens. Visitors who travel to China during the football season can take in games. The team plays its home games at the Workers Stadium in Beijing. 

Another popular pastime for visitors to China is to take in some of the local art. There is a thriving contemporary art community in the country, and the gallery Art Scene China reflects this. This gallery has two locations in Shanghai and one in Beijing. A visit to any of the venues will give visitors an idea of the cutting edge creations Chinese artists are currently putting forth. 

Local Cuisine

The rich culinary history of China is well known. There are many restaurants available to visitors of the city. One of the more popular restaurants in the country is Da Dong Roast Duck in Beijing, which has a name perfectly suited to the fare served. Duck is a favoured food in China, and this establishment offers it three different ways. In 2008, Da Dong Roast Duck won the Reader Beijing Restaurant Award for Best Chinese Restaurant. 

Shanghai Classical House is yet another good establishment to try for people who want a taste of traditional Chinese food. This restaurant opened in 1875, and has long had an international reputation.

Culture

As has already been illustrated, China is a country full of interesting architecture from across the ages. For people going to the country for the first time, there are several must-see buildings, including the Shenyang Imperial Palace. This palace was built in 1625, and it has become an UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are rooms numbering in the hundreds, and area covered by this palace is over 60,000 square metres. 

The aforementioned Temple of Heaven is located in the centre of the city of Beijing, and consists of several Taoist buildings. This awe-inspiring complex was used as a meeting place for annual prayer ceremonies.

There are also several outstanding mausoleums throughout China, which are notable for their historical significance and architectural grandeur. Among these are the Ming Tombs, which are located about 50 kilometres outside of Beijing. Another Chinese UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Ming Tombs are comprised of several different areas, with statues throughout.

China Hotels and Accommodation

Because of its rich culture and history, and the increasing importance of this nation as a political and economic power, China is rapidly becoming one of the most desired destinations for people around the globe. There are many ways to see China, and there are many different types of hotels from which to get a view. There are ways to stay in the lap of luxury in China, and there are ways to save money, as well. Whether the trip is being taken because of a business consideration, or because the family wants to see how a different culture lives, the hotels in this country make it so that either goal can be achieved with comfort.

Accommodation, driving and car rental

At Cheaperthanhotels and Cheaperthancars we have a wide range of car rental discounts at convenient locations and accommodation to meet all budgets and taste across China. We really do believe that the less you spend, the more you will have to do when you get there.

Your Cheaperthanhotels Team