8 reasons why life in China is so great


Category:  Other

Via:  buzz-of-the-orient  •  8 months ago  •  37 comments

By:    By Elliot Rhodes (People's Daily Online)

8 reasons why life in China is so great

BUZZ NOTE:  I have posted personal notes after each description about my personal experiences and knowledge relevant to the 8 reasons gained during the more than 13 years I have lived here.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

8 reasons why life in China is so great

Are you planning on moving to China? Perhaps you’ve secured a well-paying job, want to start or expand your business there, or you want to explore various attractions in this great Asian country. No matter your reason for moving to China,  living in this country offers an amazing intercultural experience. You’ll have a chance to tour the countryside, such as the deltas of two key rivers in China, the Yangtze River and Yellow River, experience the sensational festivals, and try different Chinese cuisines. In this guide, you’ll discover eight convincing reasons why life in China is so amazing.

1.  Its natural beauty


The Jiuzhaigou National Park (photo via INSTITUTE FOR PLANETS)

If your perception of China is of a vast metropolis with jammed roads, vast crowds of people, countless factories producing cheap products, and a smoggy gray sky, then you’ll be surprised by the real China. This country is endowed with natural beauty, from Inner Mongolia’s grasslands, the mysterious karst highlands of Guangxi, the massive rice paddies of southern Yunnan to the beauty of the Sichuan-based Jiuzhaigou National Park. No matter where you stay in China, you don’t have to travel far to experience the natural beauty of this country.

BUZZ NOTE:  During my life here I have seen and photographed, and posted photo essays on thenewstalkers, of what I have seen here - including the Karst mountains in Guanxi mentioned above and many magnificent parks.  As well, I have been on boats in both the major rivers mentioned above, the Yellow River and the Yangtze River. 

2.  Enthralling Food



Are you a fan of great food? If so, then you won’t regret your decision to move to China. From the flavorful tang of Sichuan dishes to the mouthwatering nature of Zhejiang cuisines among more than a dozen kinds of food, you’ll never run out of new flavours to excite your taste buds. What’s more, you can find some of these delicious yet cheap eats in the street.

BUZZ NOTE:  I have eaten Chinese food since I could walk.  My mother was a stay-at-home housewife looking after my brother and me, cooking the meals, keeping the house clean, etc. but on Sundays she had the day off, and every Sunday we went to a Chinese Restaurant (called The Pagoda) for a Chinese meal.  However, for REALLY authentic Chinese food, there's no place like China.  The photo above shows a roasted fish, just a touch crispy but soft inside, with sweet and sour sauce, and it is so delicious my mouth waters just looking at that photo, because I have enjoyed eating it a few times and look forward to more. 

3.  Diverse Culture



Although around 92 percent of China’s entire population is made up of Han Chinese, there are 55 other ethnic groups, as well as hundreds of thousands of expats. Each ethnic group has its own unique food, clothing, music, architecture, holidays, and much more, which makes China a culturally diverse nation. Yunnan province is the ideal place to experience the diversity of China’s ethnic minorities because 26 of the 55 ethnic groups live there.

BUZZ NOTE:  If you have been looking at my photo essays you will have seen many photos of minority ethnic groups in their magnificent costumes, and the architecture of their villages.

4.  Lovely Language



With four tones and more than 10,000 characters, Chinese is undoubtedly a difficult language to master. But with dedication and daily practice, you can become an expert in this beautiful language. You can learn the language from locals or enroll in groups that offer Mandarin lessons for free. Understanding and speaking the Chinese language will open new doors for your business, as it can help you connect with potential customers and employees.

BUZZ NOTE:  Maybe I should have tried to start learning Mandarin when I first arrived, but I was lazy and English is widely used here - it is the second language of China.  Street and highway signs are bilingual, as are trains, planes, and their stations and airports, and many shops and labels are, and many Chinese, especially younger ones, speak at least a little English.  I do know some words and expressions, names of things, etc., but I could never carry on a conversation.

5.  Popular Attractions



China is progressively transforming into one of the world’s must-visit tourist destinations. When you live there, you’ll have easy access to Shanghai, Hong Kong, the Great Wall, Terracotta Warriors, Palace Museum, and more. There are thousands of beautiful places to visit and a host of things to do. China is also home to 55 global UNESCO heritage sites, so you’ll always have new things to see.

BUZZ NOTE:  Although I have not been to Hong Kong (and this is no time to go there) I have been to Shanghai, the Great Wall, Terracotta Warriors in Xi'an, the Palace Museum (Forbidden City) in Beijing, and so many other places of interest here, climbed the Holy Buddhist Emei Shan mountain, seen the Giant Buddha of Loshan, and so many other sites, many being UNESCO heritage sites,  Again I have posted photo essays of those places on the Discovery Group, Creative Arts group, and the Front Page Photography and Art Forum. 

6,  Effective Public Transportation



China has one of the most effective public transport systems in the world. You can visit all four corners of this vast nation by bus or train. With over 29,000 kilometers of high-speed railway in operation as of 2018, China has the world’s largest high-speed rail network. Besides high-speed trains, there are also slow trains for those who want to travel while enjoying scenic views and mingling with locals. The extensive train and bus systems enable you to visit more places for less. They are always expanding their transport system.

BUZZ NOTE:  I have tavelled on both the regular trains in sleeper cars and the super fast trains.  The high-speed trains are like travelling in an airplane.  The seats are comfortable, the services on them excellent, and I prefer the high speed trains to flying.

7.  Opportunities



Due to its expanding economy, China is experiencing fast-paced growth in almost every industry. For this reason, companies throughout China are looking for young talents to help in expanding. Moreover, the rapidly growing economy, coupled with receptive consumers, provides lucrative opportunities for entrepreneurs seeking to open new businesses in China.

BUZZ NOTE:  When I first came to China it was to take up the job of teaching English, Australian law (almost the same as Canadian law - both being based in British law), Business English, and IELTS.  What I noted was that the big homes in the area were dirt cheap, and now, 13 year later they have at least tripled or quadrupled in value.  If I had come with money, I could be a rich man here today.  There are so many American franchises here.  Dunkin' Donuts is here, but Krispy Kreme is not, and I bet they would have really hit it off with the Chinese people who love sweet stuff.  At one time I thought, if I had the money, of opening a restaurant called "Buzz's All-Day American Breakfasts".  Most Chinese people have little knowledge of intelligent marketing, probably since they are relatively new at it. I once wrote an article about it, and will write another one on that subject soon.  (For some reason I can't explain I'm not able to enhance the font on this paragraph.)

8.  Hidden History



Did you know that the compass, paper, printing and gunpowder are inventions of the Chinese? What about the fact that Shanghai hosted over 20,000 refugees from Germany during World War Two? This massive nation has a wealth of history that you may never have heard before.

Packing up and relocating to China may seem daunting, but it could be the best decision of your life. The massive Asian country has a diverse and exciting history and culture that could keep you coming back throughout your whole life. It also has numerous opportunities for professional development and business growth.

BUZZ NOTE:  During WW2 Shanghai did not require a visa for refugees, so many Jewish refugees from Europe escaped The Holocaust by settling there - after all, most other nations did not welcome them.  The Japanese when they occupied Shanghai refused to follow Hitler's request that they exterminate the Jews because even though they savagely raped Nanjing (Nanking), they could not understand why a people should be slaughtered because of their religion.


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Buzz of the Orient
1  seeder  Buzz of the Orient    8 months ago

I'll add number 9.

9.  The Cost of Living is Much Less than in America/Canada

Even if the wages and salaries are less in comparison to US workers, the buying power of those wages and salaries is much greater in China. We get so much more for our money here. I will give you an example.  

I live in a large well-furnished 3-bedroom apartment with two balconies, new refrigerator and washing machine, huge flat-screen TV, air conditioning, etc. in a very desirable fairly newly developed middle to upper-middle class suburb of one of China's largest cities, amazing infrastructure, surrounded by 3 university campuses (which is why the area is called "University Town"), huge department store across the road, supermarkets, farmers' markets around the corner, and multiple commercial retailers and restaurants in the mall beside my building.  My very modern building has guarded person and car entrances, is kept immaculately clean, is next to a (elevated at this point) subway station and multiple bus services, free open recreational areas attached to our building where my wife and I often exercise and play ping pong.  My rent, INCLUDING gas, electricity, water, Cable TV, Internet, is the equivalent of US$500 (or CAN$600) a month.  Compare that with the monthly cost of a similar furnished apartment in a nicer area in one of America's larger cities.   I know that in Canada, something comparable would cost me at least 3 to 4 times as much. By the way, a haircut costs me US$1.50.  The bus fare is US30cents.  How much do you pay?

Freedom Warrior
1.1  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1    8 months ago

Oh what’s this all about pumping up the social credit score

Buzz of the Orient
1.1.1  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Freedom Warrior @1.1    8 months ago

Social credit???  Please explain?

Freedom Warrior
1.1.2  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1.1.1    8 months ago

 Might want to ask the folks in China that are in monitoring your postings here.

Buzz of the Orient
1.1.3  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Freedom Warrior @1.1.2    8 months ago

Ah. I see what you mean.  If they were monitoring NT, taking into consideration the amount of negativity about China posted on the site, it would probably have been banned.  I have no fear if they are monitoring me personally, because I have made comments negative about China in emails, especially just after the huge 2008 earthquake, and nothing happened to me.  At this point I'm not in disagreement with China's government policies, whether it's about Hong Kong or the Uighers or anything else.  

1.1.4  JBB  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1.1.3    8 months ago

It has been widely reported here that China will be giving its residents a "Social Credit Score" based on internet usage patterns and other parameters. Those with low scores will have travel restrictions and be penalized in various other ways. I believe you can get Wikipedia.


Buzz of the Orient
1.1.5  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  JBB @1.1.4    8 months ago

China blocks a lot of sites, like FB, Twitter, the NYTimes, google (I use Ecosia and Bing for searches) and even foreign movies on the internet (but not on TV - I watch foreign movies here on eight 24/7 movie channels), and it wasn't a big concern to me until they more recently banned Wikipedia, because i did find it useful.  

Personally, I have absolutely no concern about the reported "Social Credit Score" - I don't have a big mouth or tell other people how to run their show, nor does my wife and her family or our friends so "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."  (In case you have no interest in movies, that was Rhett Butler played by Clark Gable in Gone With the Wind). 

Freedom Warrior
1.1.6  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1.1.3    8 months ago


1.1.7  JBB  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1.1.5    8 months ago


1.1.8  loki12  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1.1.5    8 months ago

I find it hysterical that people complain about the socialist country that you live in while rushing headlong to try to create one here. thinking that it will somehow be better, and yet you don't seem to be unhappy.

What's important?

Are you happy?

Are you loved?

Do you believe you should decide how others should live, Or are you happy to just live your own life?

From all appearances Buzz, you seem happy and content with your life, It appears full, and you post pictures of your adventures, Why anybody would try to disparage or dispute what you actually know to be true puzzles me. But then I don't desire to control others.

And honestly, I can't think of a single reason why banning facebook would actually be a bad thing.

I am glad that you have a love, and a life you enjoy. 

1.2  Ed-NavDoc  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1    8 months ago

No offense, but is that only if you are Canadian or other non Americans? I get the feeling it would not be so rosy for Americans lately.

Buzz of the Orient
1.2.1  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Ed-NavDoc @1.2    8 months ago

I don't think Americans are treated any differently here than Canadians, but there is no way I can know that for sure now because although I had spent time with an American up to a year or two ago, he moved away, but back then there certainly was no difference.  I'm not in touch with any Americans here now.

2  Kavika     8 months ago

Great article Buzz.

3  Snuffy    8 months ago

Great article. Some additional questions.  How do they feel about ex-pats? Especially from America?  How's the healthcare?  How are retiree's treated in general? Crime rates? You mention your building is guarded, is that standard or necessary? As a foreigner do you feel if the people around you are guarded in how they deal with you?

Buzz of the Orient
3.1  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Snuffy @3    8 months ago

Twice, when walking past a wedding, I've been asked to pose for a photo with the bride and groom, and a number of other times people have wanted to take a photo with me. That happens less than before now, maybe because there are more foreigners.  If people speak English, and many do, they often ask me where I'm from, and want to carry on a short conversation with me. I guess I'm trying to say that we are very much accepted.  I have been invited to banquets with professionals, government officials and police who considered me to be their guest of honour.  I can't speak generally, but if I'm any example I would assume expats are treated pretty well.  From what I've seen Americans haven't been treated any different than me. 

The doctors I've needed help from have been generally pretty good, although I think some are not as altruistic as American/Canadian ones are, because I think they overdo treatments because of the money.  However, some I've used were exceptionally competent, especially female doctors.  There are no waiting lists to use special medical equipment.  The MRI is "walk-in" immediate.  But we do have to pay for medical care.  I never got expat medical insurance when I came here because I felt it would be cheaper to self-insure at my age.

I don't think retirees are treated any differently than anyone, and I believe that if they worked and paid taxes some of which is applied for old age pension, even if they stop working as my wife did, she still pays in the equivalent of about US$80 per month (which I cover) she will soon earn a lifetime pension. Criminals are charged, convicted and jailed.  The most crime is just petty stuff like pickpockets or B&E. Only middle-class and up accommodations are guarded, and there are guarded communities as well. However, where we are I have never seen the kind of individual that looks like they could be a criminal, and I have not seen homeless people in the areas in which we have lived. However, there are TV broadcasts showing police being interviewed along with people they've arrested, such as for serious driving offences. 

I'm not the kind of person who makes others uncomfortable, which would lead to their being "guarded".  My wife and I have always been friendly with all kinds of people, and they reciprocate that.

Hope I've answered your questions.

3.1.1  Kavika   replied to  Buzz of the Orient @3.1    8 months ago

I'm probably the only person on NT that is in a Chinese movie. True story.

Buzz of the Orient
3.1.2  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @3.1.1    8 months ago

Okay, so tell us....

3.1.3  Snuffy  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @3.1    8 months ago

yes, thank you. Interesting news...  I'm approaching that retirement decision and also trying to decide if I want to remain where I am at or go elsewhere. There's not much keeping me in one place so my options are rather open. Only things definitely ruled out are heat coupled with humidity. Outside of that, it's all still up in the air. 

Buzz of the Orient
3.1.4  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Snuffy @3.1.3    8 months ago

There are articles on the internet about the best and most affordable places for people to retire to. My brother moved to Manila, Philippines.  Although China is open to tourism, one cannot move to China to live without a proper reason, whether it's for a job, management, diplomacy, teaching, etc. and I am permitted to live here because I'm married to a Chinese national whose home town is where we live, so I qualify for a renewable 3 year visa based on visiting with family. They do issue "green cards" in special circumstances. 

3.1.5  Kavika   replied to  Buzz of the Orient @3.1.2    8 months ago

I was in Guangzhou on business and staying at the White Swam hotel. One day I walked to our office which was about a mile away with our manger. As we rounded a corner we were in the midst of hundreds of Chinese milling about. At first, I thought that we walked into a protest of some such thing. The people were shouting and waving their arms. A Chinese fellow dressed in western attire came up to me and began speaking to our manager. After the translation, he told me they were filming a movie and it was a period piece 1930's vintage. I looked further down the street and there were some Chinese dressed in western attire from that time period and auto from the 1930s. He asked me if I would mill around with the western attired Chiese people and act like I was debating with them. I had on a topcoat and they found a hat for me and for about 3 or 4 minutes I was filmed as part of the movie. I have no idea what the name of it was but I don't receive residuals.  

3.1.6  Kavika   replied to  Kavika @3.1.5    8 months ago

That should be, White Swan, not Swam.

Buzz of the Orient
3.1.7  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @3.1.5    8 months ago

Why didn't you leave your name and address?  Do you know that the actors from The Shawshank Redemption still get cheques  in the mail?

Just kidding - you would have had to have a speaking part. I guess "extras" don't get a stipend.

Paula Bartholomew
3.1.8  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @3.1.7    8 months ago

I was an extra for a few years but not a member of SEG (Screen Extras Guild).  Those are the extras who can get a speaking part where the rest of us were mostly background and crowd fill.

5  loki12    8 months ago

I think it’s awesome Buzz that you have embraced your new home and have found someone you love to share it with, it’s also nice to hear an inside perspective of China from someone who lives there, as opposed to the propaganda we see here,

My wife has always wanted to see the pandas, unfortunately I’m not allowed to travel there, maybe after I retire they will lift some of the restrictions. Until I can see it first hand, I will live vicariously through your descriptions and photography. 

Thank you,

Buzz of the Orient
5.1  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  loki12 @5    8 months ago

Thank you for your unbiased attitude and positive comment.  Here is one of the photos I took at the Sichuan Experimental Panda Institute in Chengdu when we lived there.  I call this guy FDR.


5.1.1  loki12  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @5.1    8 months ago

That’s awesome, FDR? Because he’s a socialist? /s

Buzz of the Orient
5.1.2  seeder  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  loki12 @5.1.1    8 months ago

LOL.  No. Note the similarity.



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