China is the one country that is bound to be on the bucket list of all travellers and wanderers. Very few countries can offer the wide range and variety of experiences that the land of the rising sun, China, does. From its rich cultural heritage to its fascinating diversity, China, the Middle Kingdom, is an ever inviting land, seeking explorers. While most of us are captivated beyond words, just by the incredible culture of the wonderful people and the breath-taking natural beauty, this majestic country has very many other possessions to boast of as well.
10. The Great Wall of China
Located near Beijing, The Great Wall of China is one of UNESCO’s world heritage sites. One of the most iconic symbols of China, this is the longest wall in the world.
The wall spans from the western borders of the country to the eastern coast, covering a distance of around 5,000 km or 3,100 miles. The best integrated and well-preserved part of the Great Wall is located close to Beijing. It is an awe-inspiring, defensive architectural accomplishment from the ancient times and undeniably deserves its position in the list of The New Seven Wonders of the world. This is exactly the reason why, in the eyes of a traveller, if you haven’t climbed the Great Wall of China, you have not been to China at all!
9. Chinese Food
Perhaps the most popular cuisine in the world, Chinese food has its special and unique position in any food lover’s heart. Although most Westerners tend to generalise Chinese food broadly into one major group, it is not the actual case in reality. Chinese cuisine varies greatly by region. In the north, noodles are the staple meal while in the south, rice is much more common and almost everything is served on top of rice. Regions like Sichuan and Hunnan are popularly known for their unique spicy food, whereas the coastal regions offer delightful preparations of sea-food. Some famous Chinese street food includes Chinese sweet potatoes, Chinese barbecue and Shao kao.
Above all, the rest of the world will forever be indebted to China for its scrumptious dumplings and of course, the most famous lifesavers, our favourite Chinese take-aways.
The ancient art of Chinese calligraphy is not only an art form but a form of meditative practice and a scholarly pursuit. In fact, in recent years, calligraphy has also become a primary filed to invest in.
With a rich tradition of the charming art of calligraphy, tracing back to many thousand years in history, China is renowned worldwide for the work on paper by the greatest of Chinese masters of all time. Experimental and digital works of calligraphy by contemporary artists are also appreciated wholeheartedly for heralding the revival of the ancient art.
That’s right! The population of the country is indeed one of the first things that come to mind as soon as one hears of China. Apart from all its magnificent cultural traditions and customs, China is rather famous for being the most overpopulated country in the world. With a population of 7.2 billion, China alone represents a full 20% of the total world population. This means that one in five people in the world is a resident of China. On an average, every woman gives birth to 1.7 children in her lifetime.
Apart from an absurd growth of population, China also has an uneven male-female ratio amongst its citizens. There is a significantly high number of males in China when compared to females and this may have something to do with the preference for a male child in many Chinese families.
6. One Child Policy
In the 20th century, when the population of China was increasing uncontrollably and rapidly, the Government of China came up with the ‘one child policy’ to try and restrict the growth to some extent. This remains to be one of the most well-known policies of the country, making it a famous topic of discussion for the rest of the world, even today.
This policy primarily limits couples to have only one child and anyone who does not abide by the law is punished, of course with some exceptions like cases of twins or couples belonging to ethnic minorities.
China was the first to discover the delight of the simple drink made from steeping tea leaves in hot water. Since then, it has developed a profound taste and appreciation for tea. Chinese tea is often one of the most exciting parts of the meal while visiting any Chinese restaurant or eatery.
Famous in the West for the different varieties of Chinese teas, some special tea leaves from China regularly sell for thousands of dollars per kilo. Such is the power and popularity of the tea culture of China.
4. Indoor Sports
China may not be the best at soccer or cricket, but it remains unparalleled when it comes to indoor sports.
With a terrific system of athletic training, China has devised a way to produce the best gymnasts, divers, badminton aces and ping-pong champions. Since its first participation in the modern Olympics in 1984, China has been consistent in maintaining its world-renowned reputation by securing medals each and every time!
Most famous for its inventions throughout the ages, China has to its credits, hundreds of different inventions that all other civilisations have benefited from. Some of the most well-known inventions of China include paper, printing and gunpowder. In fact, modern toilet paper was also invented in China, for the emperors. The Chinese also invented kites to scare the enemy in the battle-field. In fact, the Chinese emperor Shennong is said to have discovered tea, now considered to be almost a basic necessity of life.
2. Modern Buildings and Development
China boasts of some of the most developed cities in the world and is becoming increasingly modernised with time. The multitude of skyscrapers and high rises in China is a spectacular sight. Shanghai, with its famous modern riverfront skyline known as Bund, large European style buildings and Pearl of the Orient Tower epitomizes modern China.
1. The Terracotta Army
The Terracotta Army is a collection of terracotta structures which essentially represents the army of the Chinese emperor, Qin Shi Huang. Discovered in 1974 by the local farmers in the Lintong District of Xian, these historical figures are a form of funerary art, dating from the late 3rd century BC.
The terracotta figures include that of horses, warriors and chariots. These clay soldiers were buried with the first Chinese emperor to guard him till eternity and protect his tomb. Other non-military figures like that of musicians, acrobats, strongmen and officials are also found in some other different pits of the ruins. These figures vary in height, depending on their roles, with the General being the tallest.