The Chinese New Year is China’s most important festival and is celebrated by many around the world. This Chinese New Year will be the year of the Rat, which symbolises wealth and prosperity. As the number 8 is considered to be the luckiest number in Chinese culture, we’ve decided to outline eight interesting facts about China!
1. The Terracotta Warriors were found by Farmers
It’s estimated that the life size terracotta figures of warriors took over 30 years to create and they were buried with the Emperor Qin Shi Huang in 210–209 BC to protect him in the afterlife. They were hidden for centuries until they were discovered by local farmers in 1974. It’s a must-see attraction for many who visit Xi'an.
2. The Great Wall of China is actually a collection of walls
It is a common belief that the Great Wall is just one continuous length. However this iconic architectural wonder is actually a network of walls spanning over 20,000 km. Another interesting fact, workers used glutinous rice flour in the mortar due to its stickiness.
3. Tiananmen Square contains the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong
Mao Zedong, or Chairman Mao, founded the People’s Republic of China in Tiananmen Square on October 1st, 1949, an event which is still commemorated to this very day. The square, which is one of the largest in the world, also houses a Monument to the People's Heroes, the Great Hall of the People and the National Museum of China.
4. Chinese Food Varies Greatly From Region To Region
During your travels in China, make sure to try the tasty regional dishes. Chinese food is based on five key flavours, sweet, sour, salty, bitter and spicy, which need to all balance with each other to form one harmonious dish. Chinese food eaten in China is much fresher and more unusual than you would get in your local takeaway. Peking duck, Cantonese beef soup, fried rice, and pork noodles are just some of the specialities served here.
5. The Forbidden City is the biggest imperial palace in the world
The Forbidden City was the Chinese Imperial Palace during the Ming Dynasty and served as the home of emperors for almost 500 years. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its finely preserved collection of ancient buildings in China. The design of the Forbidden City was meticulously planned to reflect philosophical and religious principles of the Ming Dynasty and to symbolise the majesty of Imperial power.
6. The Yangtze River is the longest river in Asia
It’s also known as 'Chang Jiang' in Chinese, which means 'long river' and is also the third longest in the world. One of the most spectacular sights to see whilst taking a river cruise on the Yangtze is the Three Gorges.
7. Shanghai is the largest city in China
The ‘Paris of the East’, the ‘Queen of the Orient’, Shanghai is a buzzing and exciting metropolitan city to explore. Shanghai natives have their own dialect called ‘Shanghainese’; Chinese people from other parts of the country can’t even understand it!
8. Pandas spend the majority day eating
Pandas’ famous diet mainly consists of bamboo and they spend between 10-16 hours a day eating! Giant Pandas are the national animal of China and unlike other species of bear, they do not hibernate.
Experience the Land of the Red Dragon and discover China with Travel Department.