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Getting lost is no fun, especially in a foreign land where you can’t speak the language. In Part One of this series, we learned a bunch of Chinese words for common places and location. Now we’ll get into some more details as we learn about directions in Chinese.
Before you can begin to understand directions in Chinese, you’ll have to learn how to ask for them. More often than not, you ask for directions from a stranger. As such, it’s useful to learn a couple of polite phrases for bothering somebody to help you:
It’s always a good idea to throw one of those in before you go asking for directions. Now here are a few different ways you can do that:
Put it all together, and you might say something like this:
Ok, great – so you know how to ask for directions. The problem is understanding them! Let’s move on to some useful words and phrases related to directions in Chinese.
Here are some of the most common words/phrases you’ll hear when getting directions:
yī zhí zǒu
wǎng qián zǒu
wǎng běi zǒu
wǎng xī zǒu
hóng lǜ dēng
Let’s look at a few examples of directions and you’ll see some of these words in action:
Why don’t you give it a try? Think of a place near where you live that you can easily give directions to and try to do it in Chinese!
In the next post, we’ll put everything we learned together and read a few sample conversations of a tourist asking a local for directions.