Chinese Language Blog

Top 5 Chinese Blog Posts of 2019 Posted by on Dec 23, 2019 in Culture, Vocabulary

It’s hard to believe, but we’re nearing the end of the decade. For me, it’s pretty wild to reflect back on the past decade. I spent over half of it in China, and I’ve been writing for the Chinese blog the entire time. It’s an appropriate instance to use the phrase “time flies” (时光飞逝 – shí guāng fēi shì)! At the end of the year, we always like to look at what posts were most popular with our readers. Before we ring in 2020, here are the top 5 Chinese blog posts of 2019.

5. China Turns 70

Tiananmen Square – the heart of China.

Back on October 1st, China celebrated its National Day (国庆节 – guó qìng jié). This year was an especially big one, as the PRC turned 70. In this post, I give a brief history of modern-day China, starting with Chairman Mao establishing the new nation back in 1949. I also discuss the concept of China’s Golden Weeks (黄金周 – huáng jīn zhōu), which are both very busy times for travel in the Middle Kingdom. In addition, you can learn the entire Chinese national anthem, “March of the Volunteers” (义勇军进行曲 – yì yǒng jūn jìn xíng qǔ).

4. 7 Must-Know Questions for Eating Out in China

Can you understand the menu?

I’ll never forget my first week in China, especially those first couple of trips to local restaurants. Staring at a menu where I understood absolutely nothing, having to use chopsticks, and experiencing smells and tastes I was not at all accustomed to. Eating out in China can be intimidating, especially when you’re at a low level of Chinese. Far too many visitors to China resort to eating at places like KFC because they’re freaked out by local restaurants. In this post I teach you some must-know questions that will help you confidently walk into that hole-in-the-wall noodle joint, such as “Do you have a picture menu?” (你有照片菜单吗?- nǐ yǒu zhào piàn cài dān ma).

3. Marriage in China

Wedding photos in Qingdao.

Love is in the air here on the Chinese blog, as our readers loved this post by Ayana about marriage (婚姻 – hūn yīn) in China. In this excellent and informative post, you’ll learn about the history of arranged marriage (包办婚姻 – bāo bàn hūn yīn) in China, which is now illegal. You’ll also learn a bit about a naked marriage (裸婚 – luǒ hūn), which probably isn’t what you expect it to be! This post is a great insight into Chinese culture and it has quite a bit of useful vocabulary, so check it out if you missed it!

2. Cantonese Food

Cantonese Food

Dim sum in Guangzhou.

There are many different styles of Chinese food. Without a doubt, one of the most famous is Guangdong cuisine (广东菜 – guǎng dōng cài). You may know it as Cantonese food, and it’s also called Yue Cuisine (粤菜 – yuè cài) in Chinese. Be prepared to have your mouth watering after reading this post! I introduce Cantonese classics like dim sum (点心 – diǎn xīn), drunken prawns (醉虾 – zuì xiā), and slow cooked soup (老火湯 – lǎo huǒ tāng – lit. old fire soup). Cantonese food is known to be fresh and is not nearly as spicy as the cuisine of Western China. It’s definitely one of my favorites!

Check out this “A Day in Guangzhou” video to see what a dim sum brunch looks like!

1. The Year of the Pig

The Year of the Pig

Image by Epic Fireworks from Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

According to the Chinese zodiac (生肖 – shēng xiào), we are finishing up the Year of the Pig (猪年 – zhū nián). Our readers are clearly interested in this topic, as it was our most popular post of 2019! In this post, I explain the interesting story behind the Chinese zodiac and how the 12 animals are ordered. Spoiler alert – the pig finished last, meaning the cycle begins anew in 2020. You’ll also learn about the characteristics of those born in the Year of the Pig and which numbers and months are lucky/unlucky for them.


In case you were wondering, the Chinese New Year falls on January 25th in 2020, ringing in the Year of the Mouse (老鼠年 – lǎo shǔ nián). We’re excited for another year of posts here at the Chinese blog, and we hope you are as well! We really appreciate feedback from our readers and would love to hear from you. What kind of posts would you like to see on the blog next year? Leave a comment and let us know, and we’ll do our best to get them online!

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About the Author: sasha

Sasha is an English teacher, writer, photographer, and videographer from the great state of Michigan. Upon graduating from Michigan State University, he moved to China and spent 5+ years living, working, studying, and traveling there. He also studied Indonesian Language & Culture in Bali for a year. He and his wife run the travel blog Grateful Gypsies, and they're currently trying the digital nomad lifestyle across Latin America.

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