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Travelling around China

Written by Daniel Otero

China in a quick 360


By: Daniel Otero



China is good for you


With 22 provinces and four direct municipalities (Beijing, Chongqing, Shanghai and Tianjin); and its S.A.R.s (Special Autonomous Regions) of Hong Kong and Macao.  There is so much in the history of China and thousands of things to see and choose from.

Macao Tower, photo by: Daniel Otero


China would take any traveler 20 or more years to cover the country and still, it wouldn’t be enough.  Just take Marco Polo’s example.  He lived in China for 20 years and didn’t get to see or experience everything.


Over a century-old trolleys, in Hong Kong, by: Daniel Otero


China’s also a culinary adventure.  Through 22 provinces, there are thousands of platters to taste.  Therefore, it’ll be a lifetime of tasting.  After all, Chinese food is the third most popular cuisine in the world.


Portrait of Marco Polo, Genoa, Italy


How big is China?

In a nutshell, China is the second largest country in the world.  The country has a population of 1.4 billion, yep, that’s billion with a capital ‘B’.


One of the best dishes in China, its savory noodles, photo by: Daniel Otero


When and how China began?


Most will say, China began 5,000 years before.  According to historians, the majority are off by 300 years, it was 4,700 ago.


Dynasties in China started consolidating power with the Shang Dynasty 3,600 years before.

But China as an Empire expanded with the State of Qin in 221 B.C.E. (Before the Common Era).  The first Emperor was Qin Shi Huang who united the Warring States and built the Great Wall of China.


Daniel Otero at the Great Wall


China is sweet and what to see


China’s a cool place!  Where to begin?


To give China a chance; whether it’s to live or on holiday, there are two grand places to experience…


The first is Beijing, because it’s the most easy to get around capital in China.  One of the largest cities, with one of the best metro systems in the world.  In an easy five-day trip, the visitor can enjoy: The Great Wall of China (on the Badaling Side), then Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and Temple of Heaven.


The second coolest and can be done is six-days is Xian: for its Terracotta Warriors, Drum Tower, Xian Museum, Xian Wall, Muslim Quarter for its ancient mosque and to experiment the best Muslim food in the whole of China.



Terracotta Warriors, Xian, photo by: Daniel Otero


Give China a shot and it’ll be one of the best experiences in a lifetime.  Come on (加油)!

About the author

Daniel Otero

A New Yorker who has been living in China for the past 10 years. He's a freelance writer/journalist and ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher.

A former member of the military with extensive travel to 50 countries and has lived in six.

Lover of life, good food, travel, writing and dealing with social issues.