8 Lessons I Learnt while Travelling in China 31

Travelling opens your eyes to a greater and bigger world. Constantly keep your minds and hearts open. The Caveman is out travelling in China and learnt so much about the country.

#1 Nothing is Impossible!


From the Great wall of China to the Great Firewall of China, everything seems possible to the Chinese. The Great wall of China is over a span of about 21,000km and is build as early as the 7th century to prevent foreign adversaries from attacking China. They would go to great length to make things happened.

#2 The First Price is never the Final Price


The Chinese are the master of haggling, and it is pretty certain that the initial price that is quoted to you would never be the final price that you pay if you put in some effort to haggle. When travelling in China, I received a massive discount while working alongside with other Chinese to haggle.

#3 The Lawlessness – Tobacco above the law


It is estimated that 30% of cigarettes smoked in the world is smoked in China. China is the world largest cigarettes and tobacco producer. When travelling in China, it seems like the Chinese are oblivious about the no-smoking sign. I have seen them smoking right under the no-smoking sign.

#4 Public Transport – Keeping it Cheap and Public


Buses within each area can go as low as USD0.15 or at RMB 1 per trip. It’s high-speed rail network currently linked more than 100 cities in China. The most famous high-speed rail in China is the Qinghai–Tibet Railway, that connects Beijing with Tibet.

#5 UNESCO World Heritage


China is the 2nd most UNESCO world heritage in the world, following closely behind Italy. China has a total of 48 UNESCO world heritage, from the famous Forbidden City to the Fujian Tulou.

#6 Income Inequality


China has a high economy disparity. When travelling in China, I realised that there were many luxurious cars on the streets, and there were farmers that earned as little as RMB 1 per day.

#7 China is Watching

China Golden Shield project includes the censorship which is camera on treesfrequently known as the Great Fire Wall of China and surveillance. With all the new technology in the surveillance camera, China seems to go to all length to place surveillance camera at every lane, every corner. I have seen surveillance camera placed on the trees.



#8 Communicating Using Car Horn


China has about 200 million motor vehicles on the road, and they seem to have created an interlanguage using the car horn. A short honk could mean be careful I am coming while a long honk could mean F*** OFF! It is estimated that the car horn is used more than 40 times than the average usage in Europe.

You would learn so much about the country when you have an opened mind!

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31 thoughts on “8 Lessons I Learnt while Travelling in China

  • Natalie

    Interesting facts about China. I didn’t realize that they were such big smokers, and I love the idea that they have cheap public transportation! I guess that is beneficial when you are visiting all of those UNESCO World Heritage sites 🙂

  • Christina

    Even with all the downfalls of China (like you mention, the Great Fire Wall, cigarette smoke, car horns…) it is still very high on my bucket list. We hope to visit next year to check out some UNESCO sites.

  • Lara Dunning

    The remark about haggling is a good reminder. Western society is so used to the listed price being the final price that haggling really isn’t in our nature. I didn’t realize that the Chinese smoked so much. 30%! Wow!

  • Meg Jerrard

    I’m actually really looking forward to my first visit to China in June – we’re heading to Qinghai for a week. Good to know that it’s a place I should haggle! Thanks for the introduction to traveling through the country – can’t wait!

  • Anne Sutherland-Smith

    Thank you for sharing these fascinating insights about China. I have not yet visited China, but I would definitely like to go there one day. I hadn’t realised just how many UNESCO World Heritage sites there are!

  • travelling chingrita

    the disparity in wealth is pretty unreal, but it’s everywhere. i found it more shocking that the lack of care for hygiene was so prevalent. i’ve gone back a few times, but haven’t in many years. perhaps, one day.. i will return but not entirely certain that i was.

  • mark wyld

    Ah China you are high on my list of places to visit and hopefully we can meet sometime in 2017. For so long you have been top of my bucketlist. The fact that you have so many UNESCO sites is amazing and i intend to visit some of these places. Great tip about haggling on price thanks

  • Aileen Adalid

    After reading through this entry, it made me realize how similar it is from my country, the Philippines haha! Then again, a lot of Filipinos are half-Chinese so go figure 😉 Anyhow, you just made me yearn for a visit to China. I hope I get to be there soon!

  • Erica

    The first price is never the last price. A lesson that will be learned and applied all over Asia! I swear my haggling skills has gotten better since moving here!

  • Ibazela

    I knew that cigarette industry in China is growing like crazy. It’s like – whenever you look at the pictures from China – someone is always smoking there 😉 Communication using horn is something I experienced in Istanbul and to be honest I was always a little afraid to cross the street 😉 Income inequity was something that might be expected, especially on the rural – urban comparison. But what I didn’t know (and thank you sooooooo much for that!!!) that “China is the 2nd most UNESCO world heritage in the world”! WOW! Now I really need to hurry up and visit China before I move out from Asia! Thanks :*

  • Natalie Deduck

    OMG, the horn!!
    Apparently a noise problem in all Asia. And as much as I try to understand the difference between cultures, the bloody horn drives me crazy!
    I´m living in Thailand and here people are quiet drivers, but China and Vietnam are the champions on honk the horn!
    Really enjoy reading your observations, great post!
    Happy travels Bernard!

  • Mar Pages vidal

    Haha you are so right! I think the one almost nobody ever realises is the amount of UNESCO sites China has and it is predicted that by 2020 the country will be the one with the most inbound and outbound tourists

  • Dave Briggs

    Reading this from my adopted home town of Athens in Greece, I can see so many similarities I wouldn’t have thought of before! In particular, the smoking and communication by car-honking!

  • Nisha

    Those are some wonderful tips about China. Chinese don’t adhere to law when it comes to smoking?
    And that horn thing. Looks like I am reading about my country India ! 🙂

    Do people still in the Forbidden City?

  • Carol Colborn

    What interesting insights into China…especially the 48 World Heritage Sites, the car honks, and the Great Fire Wall. I will be careful when I go!!

  • Akid

    30% of tobacco is smoked in China! What a ridiculous number, I hope I don’t have any of those traits on my Chinese genes! That surveillance camera in the trees can definitely be a meme as well ha-ha. Great things to know before I head to China. Thanks!


  • tessa

    hi… i would want to visit china for a holiday but thinking of the burden in applying for a visa made me think twice..is it difficult to apply especially that im a senior citizen just willing to fulfill one of my dreams.. thank you

    • Bernard Tan Post author

      Dear Tessa, Thanks for reaching out to me. When I travelled to China, I do not require a Visa, as I am from Singapore. But I would like to point you to http://ph.china-embassy.org or you might want to get a travel agency in China to arrange your visa for you. Hope you fulfill your dreams and enjoy China. Its no doubt a beautiful place to visit.