Traveling independently in China can be an enriching and exciting experience. From exploring historic landmarks to sampling delicious cuisine, China has a lot to offer to solo travelers. However, it’s important to be well-prepared and informed about the country’s culture, language, and customs. With careful planning and research, you can have a safe and memorable trip. Some recommended destinations for independent travelers in China include Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Chengdu.
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4 Keys to Traveling Independently in China
- To prevent tourist traps, China holiday ruiners, and culture shock stress, spend as much time as you can getting ready for your trip.
- Before traveling, acquire as much practical Chinese as you can, and continue learning (using a Chinese language app) while in China.
- To make the most of the scenery and to prevent getting stuck up a creek without a paddle, carefully plan and arrange everything.
- Be patient, tolerant, rest more, and take it slowly to avoid frustration.
1. Airports and Flights
These offer a very similar experience and service in China to taking a plane in the West. There is even English signage and service. So far so good…
2. Transport in China — Chinese Needed
You will need to consider your transportation options after you arrive in China. Walking is not practicable for much more than hikes and central areas in China due to its size. N.B. The China firewall restricts a large portion of the Internet, so look for an alternative to Google Maps or a VPN application.
3. The Sights — What You Come All This Way to See
How will you decide which sites to visit when creating your schedule on your own? More importantly, what strategy would you employ to make the most of each tourist attraction? This is frequently more difficult than in the West, where attractions are less exotic, layouts are secure, logical, and well-thought-out, and information/signage is easily accessible in English.
4. Hotels — Easier to Arrange on Your Own Than the Itinerary…
A good hotel is not as easy to find in China as in the West. Here standards are different, less reliable, and even vary from region to region. 5-star in Beijing is not the same as 5-star in Zhangjiajie! A big outlay may go a long way, but is still no guarantee that you get what you want.
5. Food — Even This Needs Planning
Food, it can’t be under-emphasized, is very different in China. Traveling America or Europe unaided, you’d be bound to find recognizable menus and flavors without too much trouble — not so easily done in China! Before planning to go to China independently you should think what you will eat, especially if you have allergies, intolerances, or particular tastes.
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