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A tale of two cities

Chengdu is known for pandas, spicy food, hot girls and of course; home the newest  INTERNCHINA office. Over the last year or so there have been significant developments within the city’s infrastructure and the whole Chengdu lifestyle is arguably changing from a chilled out, tea drinking society to a fast paced, iPhone talking, Gucci Wearing, consumer spending economic powerhouse.

picture1InternChina – New Developments – TaiKoo Li

But perhaps it’s better to say the two aspects of Chengdu life are starting to coexist in a fascinating mix match of new and old, local and foreign, rich and poor. Recent developments between Lang Kwai Fong and the ShangriLa Hotel and the newly opened TaiKooLi (of Beijing Sanlitun fame) show a desire to keep architecture in line with traditional buildings and represent a welcome change from giant glass structures of over 60 stories (Chengdu is building a lot of these).

webwxgetmsgimg (3)InternChina – New Developments – Jinguanyijie

Perhaps what is happening in Chengdu is just a localised version of what you can find across the country. When people mention China – it’s quite hard to put your finger on what is China? We operate in 3 different cities and the marketing, local culture and treasures for each are very different. From Spicy Chuan Chuan in Chengdu, to Beer Bags in Qingdao and Dim Sum in Zhuhai – each part of China is unique and more importantly worthy of visiting if you can.

picture2InternChina – Two different worlds

To provide a more personal example of how life can differ in China I want to give you an example of how my life has changed in China. I have lived in rural China for a while before moving to the big city of Chengdu.


Mile County, Yunnan (about 2 hours from Kunming) pop. 500,000

A typical day is….(and there never was)

  • Wake up to beautiful sunshine (Yunnan is VERY sunny) and mountain scenery.
  • Walk to town along a dusty path, past the odd horse and cart and buses of people – all dressed in minority clothing who are on their way to the downtown market.
  • Pose for several photographs, whilst shouts of “hello” and “laowai” are whispered follow me around the shops which sell everything apart from anything I really recognise.
  • Observe people cooking tea eggs, smelly tofu, steamed buns and other unrecognisable dishes.
  • Eat at a fine Chinese restaurant for less than a beer in Chengdu and walk home with the sun setting

picture3InternChina – fresh countryside air!

Chengdu China population 15 million 

A typical day is…(and there never is)

  • Wake up in my high rise apartment (42 floors) look out at the expanding CBD district as another floor of a Skycraper goes up.
  • Walk to a spotless subway station past Starbucks, H&M, 7/11, a funky new Art exhibition as well as the familiar morning street food like pancakes jian bing and bao zi. As I reach the station a chorus of “Modi Modi!” rings out – these guys are basically trying to get you to go on the back of their motorbike taxi across the city at lightening speed.
  • Take a busy subway with fashionable businessmen and women rushing to work whilst carrying the latest iPhones and designer bags
  • Conduct business, meet clients and talk to companies who are designing computer games, marketing events for high end clients or designing the latest luxury shopping mall
  • Dinner at either a local favourite or numerous western restaurants; Japanese, Cuban, Belgian, Indian it’s all here as well as the latest fashionable imports from Shanghai and Beijing such as Element Fresh and Blue frog.
  • Home and I can finally relax above a city which is still not sleeping.

webwxgetmsgimg (2)InternChina – New CBD

Clearly Chengdu has woken up from being a sleepy city and now is the centre of West China’s still double digit growth. New developments are everywhere come and see it for yourself! This weekend I might take a taxi to one of the parks and maybe eat some BBQ but similarily I could take a UBER Audi A6 to a new shopping district.

webwxgetmsgimg (1)InternChina – Traditional travel

Chinese Traditions, Cultural, Discover Chinese culture, Learn about China, Understanding Chinese culture

Sports in China

If you think about a sport in China, you probably think about Kung Fu or Ping Pong is that correct? Well as years have passed, China has really gone through an evolution when it comes to sports. China is always a gold getter during the Olympics. This is because of the investment they make in the youth by providing them with a hard working mentality while they are just children.We decided take a closer look at this mentality on sports in China.

First of all, there is a large variety of high-level sports that China excels in. Here are just a few examples: badminton, basketball, tennis, football, gymnastics, tennis, etc.  All these sports are being funded by the Chinese Government to stimulate the youth in being active during their studies. It is even mandatory for every school to have small sessions of activities in the morning and sometimes even after lunch. While crossing the streets here in China it is not a surprise to see many companies or restaurants doing some type of activities with their staff. This provides the staff with a healthy dose of daily exercise. The government has also placed a lot of public exercise locations, which are most of the time occupied by the elder. When you walk down the streets of China in the evening, the chance of stumbling upon a group of elder people practicing Tai Chi is very high. As foreigners this is something completely new to see. While we are studying we can choose if we want to go for sports or not. Maybe this is something to be jealous about?


We love to see China pushing the youth and the elders towards a more healthy and productive way of living. The Chinese people have a much wider selection of sports than 10 years ago. Instead of just seeing Tai Chi, you see everyone playing soccer, badminton, volleyball, basketball, etc.. Who knows what sports we’ll see in 2020? What kind of investments will the government make to keep stimulating the youth? Some of them might even have a chance for an Olympic title in the future. Time will tell !


Cantonese, Chinese Traditions, Cultural, How-to Guides, Learn about China, Travel, Understanding Chinese culture

Hong Kong Up Close – Part 1

Looking at the map of China, most of the city names may not be familiar to you, apart from Beijing of course (I hope…), but there’s one small dot on the map that everyone should have heard of. It’s the port city in the very South of China – Hong Kong. If you’re currently interning in Zhuhai, or will be going there soon, you’ll most likely fly to Hong Kong first and then travel over to Zhuhai by ferry. It’s that close.
So what exactly is Hong Kong? If you’ve been to Hong Kong before, you might be wondering why you don’t need a visa to enter Hong Kong, but you do as soon as you want to go anywhere else in China (except Macao, but that’s another story). It’s full name is actually Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China. Yes, that’s quite a mouthful. In short, this means that Hong Kong presides under the One China, Two Systems principle, meaning Hong Kong has its own government, legal system, police force, monetary system, official languages etc. To understand how this came to be, we need to go back in time a little… a lot.

Back in 1839-42 China was caught up in the First Opium War with the British Empire. When China was defeated, Hong Kong as well as the Kowloon Peninsula were ceded to the Brits and hence became a British colony.  There was a bit of back and forth between the British and the Japanese during the second World War, but essentially the British Empire kept control of Hong Kong until 1984 when the Sino-British Joint Declaration transferred the port city to the People’s Republic of China. Hong Kong officially became part of China under the One Country, Two Systems principle in 1997.

So there’s your History Lesson. Let’s move on…

Where to go?

Firstly, a word about transport. Although, it’s more expensive than China, buses, taxis and the MTR (Underground) are still relatively cheap in Hong Kong. It’s a very well connected city, and although it can be daunting at first, the MTR map is easy to navigate. Most people travel by MTR, so I would avoid taking the trains at rush hour. Nevertheless the trains are very frequent and punctual.


Before I came to do my internship in Chengdu last year, and again before I came to Qingdao this year, I visited Hong Kong for a few days. Here’s my 3 favourite places I would include in your holiday planner:

The Peak
If you go to Hong Kong, you can’t not go to the Peak. If you haven’t been up there, then you haven’t seen Hong Kong. Take the Peak Tram up to the top (this is half the fun!) and once you’re up there, take a deep breath and be amazed. The peak offers you an incredible view of the impressive cityscape and sparkling Victoria Harbour all the way to the New Territories. It is also beautiful at night. One word of advice though, don’t go when it’s foggy or cloudy…

The Peak

Tsim Sha Tsui or TST
This part of town is right by Victoria Harbour, and the Star Ferry Pier. TST is basically Hong Kong’s shopping area. Hong Kong is already riddled with shopping malls, but here, you can go from mall to mall without ever stepping outside. Apart from shopping though, I would definitely recommend taking a walk along the Avenue of Stars, where various celebrities (including Jackie Chan) have left their handprints, and there’s even a statue of Bruce Lee! As a bonus, you also get a beautiful view of Central on the opposite side, which is especially scenic at night.

View of Central from TST

Mong Kok
This funky place is only three stops away from Tsim Sha Tsui, and it definitely has its own character. You’ll find old and new high-rise buildings, shopping malls and pedestrian areas, street vendors, night clubs, bars and massage parlours. With it’s incredibly high population density Mong Kok has actually made it into the Guinness World Records as the busiest district in the world! What makes Mong Kok famous, however, is its Ladies Market. The street to look for is Tung Choi Street, where you can bargain yourself through over 100 stalls selling everything from suitcases to underwear…

Ladies Market

Of course this is not all Hong Kong has to offer. Want to go somewhere quiet and remote? Yes, Hong Kong has that too! Stay tuned for my next blog on some more interesting places to see, and as a special treat, I’ll be talking about food… Dim Sum, anyone?




Night market:


Chinese Traditions, Comparisons, Cultural, Learn about China, Travel, Understanding Chinese culture

Being with foreigners from a Chinese point of view

My name is Henry, I am from a small city in Guangdong province and I moved to Zhuhai in order to begin my studies. After 4 years of studying I finally received my degree and during those years I fell in love with this city. It is not only a beautiful and relaxed city full of lovely people, it´s also the city where I met my lovely girlfriend Lulu. After my graduation, we both decided to settle down in Zhuhai and enjoy the fresh air and vibrancy of the city. I feel very happy to have the chance to work for InternChina, because the company helps me to grow and improves my English a lot. I´ve been working with IC for only 6 months and already made so many foreign friends and learned a lot about foreign cultures. I am responsible for customer relations in order to ensure the best possible time in Zhuhai for our clients, ranging from arranging pick up´s, apartments and homestay arrangements to solving any kind of problem you can imagine.

As a Chinese person I think it must be very interesting for foreigners to know what Chinese people think about the foreigners coming to Zhuhai or  China in general. Therefore I would like to share my thoughts with you.

First of all I feel so surprised that almost all of my foreign friends don´t like Chicken feet. It is one of the most famous and delicious dishes in China but my friends think it´s weird, can you believe that? Also there is another dish which I need to mention. FROG!, My very favorite food. If you ever come to Zhuhai, I would be more than happy to take you to the best frog restaurant in the city. I´m 100% sure you will like it! Just imagine eating the best fish mixed with the best chicken, there you go. Cut the frog into pieces and fryit in soy sauce and chili which gives it a very special and unique flavor. The best flavor of course! But actually Chinese people don´t eat frog that often. And of course, for everyone for whom this sounds ridiculous, we also have normal food that isn’t like the Chinese food you can get in western countries and is in fact way better J It ranges from Tofu, spicy rips, Beijing duck to every imaginable kind of vegetable. Last but not least you should know that Zhuhai is famous for a lot of seafood at a very reasonable price and you can get everything from oysters to clams.


Furthermore my foreign friends really like to discover all the secrets of Zhuhai in their free time such as going to the islands or climbing mountains. But most of them are, for those who didn´t guess, totally into the Bar Street. This is an amazing place where you can buy beers or cocktails, relax or party. But be careful with the alcohol, Chinese people like to “challenge” each other while they are drinking and often try to pursue you to drink more which is part of our culture, of course including drinking games as well. Maybe you will be a bit confused by this but just come and see it yourself and of course if you don´t want to drink you don´t have to but it can be loads of fun.

What do I like to do the most with my foreign friends? That would be going to the famous KTV (karaoke TV) in order to have a night of drinks, singing and fun. This is the thing Chinese people like a lot and they go for KTV very often. You can rent a private room with Karaoke, order whatever drinks and snacks you like and sing songs in Chinese or English with your friends. Most of my foreign friends love it and tell me that it´s the perfect place to release any kind of pressure. We really enjoy it!

I hope I can meet you one day in Zhuhai too!


Written by Henry Guan | Customer Relations at InternChina

China Business Blogs, Learn about China, Understanding Business in China

SmellMe – China is going pet crazy

Worth a staggering $1.2 billion, the Chinese pet-care market shouldn´t be underestimated.  SmellMe (闻闻窝), a Chinese startup saw the potential and created a social network solely for China´s pampered pets targeting some of the estimated 33 million households in the country holding a cat or dog.  With already 500.000 registered users SmellMe is more than just a gimmick and includes everything from setting up a profile for your pet to an overview of user-rated pet-care places like pet hotels and grooming salons. Even snapping pictures or short videos in order to hook your pet up with someone else’s is possible!


However, this is nothiing new and there are already a couple of other social networks for your pets like “Klooff” ( with a user base of around 1.5 million in the US or “my social petwork” ( in the UK.

For some this may sound like a joke but this is already a reality and if you walk along the streets of any city in China, you will see a lot of pampered dogs or even cats. People take good care of their pets and treat them very well, therefore this app could be a new dimension for the pet market in China. We will see what the future brings and if the business model has a longer lasting prospect of success, but for now we can say that 500.00 registered users is quite impressive for a pampered pets social network which launched in 2014.


The website can be found here:

The website is currently in Chinese only so if you can´t read Chinese the page might not be for you! Still, it is definitely worth having quick look at and put your browser’s translator to the test!




Written by Kevin Dean Kowalczyk | Intern at InternChina

Chinese Traditions, Cultural, Discover Chinese culture, Learn about China, Things To Do in Qingdao, Travel

10 Things about China that “Westerners” Envy – Part II of II

Who doesn´t like singing in the shower? In China karaoke reaches a new level. Everywhere you go you find KTV where Chinese as well as foreigners sing, eat, drink and have fun together. If you haven´t experience KTV before, it´s worth to go to China and see it yourself.
Note – Karaoke in China is a bit different from the drunken yodalling in the west. Chinese people can actually sing and they take it pretty seriously! Warm up with some scales before you go.





Street and food sounds like two different pair of shoes but in China this is common practice. Everywhere you go you will have little streetfood “restaurants” where you can find everything from fried chicken feet to the best noodle soup you can imagine. Be open for everything and you will probably taste some of the most delicious food in the world.



Beer in bags

Tired of opening beer bottles? Why not just buying plastic bags filled with the amount beer you would like to have? Sounds hilarious? In Qingdao, China you can find fresh brewed beer filled into plastic bags, just don´t forget to ask for a straw so you can directly enjoy the taste of the freshness.

InternChina TOP TIP – Can´t finish a bag in one go and struggling to put the bag down without spilling the beer??  Get a coat hanger, put the large hole on a door knob then hang the beer bag from the hanger hook! 😉



The magic moment when cheese is 1/2 price in the foreign supermarket

Finding cheap cheese in China could be one of the hardest challenges in your lifetime. But there is this magic moment, the moment which conjures a big smile on your face, the moment where you see the cheese for half of the price in a foreign supermarket. But be careful, big queue´s of foreigners which nearly fight for getting a little peace of the cheesepie, so be prepared and bring a lot of patience with you.



Everything is hard but nothing is impossible

How often do you hear the sentence “This is impossible”? In China there is a different mindset. Even if the challenge looks like the most impossible task the world ever faced, Chinese people find a solution for it. It might be not the best solution but it works and it´s better to have a solution that works than standing in the desert without any water.


Written by Kevin Kowalczyk | InternChina


Chinese Traditions, Cultural, Discover Chinese culture, Learn about China, Travel, Understanding Chinese culture

10 Things about China that Westerners Envy – Part I of II

Traffic Light Countdown Displays
China’s traffic lights display the number of seconds left for those who are crossing or waiting to cross the street. Many foreign countries do have this, making it more inconvenient for pedestrians.


A Big Place to Explore

If you haven´t been to China before you rarely can imagine how much land China really has. Taking a bus or train from the south to the north of China doesn´t just take a couple of hours, it takes a couple of days, of course depending on where you are going to. I just remember my friend which said: “Let´s go to Shanghai by train and have a great weekend there”. My answer was: “If you want to spend the whole weekend in the train I´m in”.

Chinese lunch and dinner

Haven´t been invited to a typical chinese lunch or dinner yet? Then you definitely missed something. It´s not only delicious it´s even more and there will be such a variety of all kind of different food on the table that you will have problems about with which you start trying. But the best about it is to share all the food with others which makes it a really unique experience.

Chinese dinner at it´s best


Forget Amazon, forget ebay and everything else what you are used to in western countries you’re your online shopping experience. Whether you are looking for a human hamster wheel or rather a spaceflight, on Taobao you can find nearly everything.

Some facts:Taobao Marketplace had more than 5 million registered users as of June 2013 and hosted more than 80 million product listings. For the year ending March 31, 2013, the combined gross merchandise volume (GMV) of Taobao and combined exceeded RMB 1 trillion.



Music matters

Running along the beach while enjoying the sunshine and the fresh smell of water and one second later a guy with a bycycle drives by with a big music box on the front of his bike. Yes in China music matters and whichever public place you will be at you´ll find someone listen to music and yes, chinese people even share the music.

You will also find lots of free dance classes in the outdoors in squares and parks, where you can just join in and learn some new fantastic moves, even if the moves are old fashioned and surrounded by pensioners.


Written by Kevin Kowalczyk | Intern at InternChina Office Zhuhai

Events in Zhuhai

InternChina at the Zhuhai – Macau Half Marathon 2014

Howdiho together,
Yesterday, Sunday the 14th of November 2014 the annual Zhuhai – Macau charity “half-marathon” in Zhuhai took place. Kevin from our InternChina office in Zhuhai and Jesus who is currently interning at our partner company China 2 West were participating in this 16 km distance run.

Zhuhai - Macau Half Marathon 2014

Both were preparing for almost three weeks in order to finish the race in their best possible times and it needs to be said that they never ran such a long distance at a competition before. And indeed, Kevin and Jesus ran a great time considering this limited time to prepare. Both guys accomplished the 16 km distance within 1 hour and 20 minutes and feel happy to have crossed the finish line along with 500 other Chinese runners.

               IMG_4637 Zhuhai - Macau Half Marathon 2014 Zhuhai - Macau Half Marathon 2014

But not only was the run was a great experience for both, they also had a great time meeting, chatting and taking photos with lots of Chinese people. Finally all the runners had a big,delicious lunch in the Nanping area of Zhuhai which included free Harbin beer, what more would our two guys needed after a challenging race?

Also a big thank you to Maddy, Dasha, Manish, Pat and Sunny for supporting Kevin and Jesus on the morning before the run and giving our guys even more confidence and encouragement.

Zhuhai - Macau Half Marathon 2014

Your InternChina Zhuhai office.

Learn about China, Qingdao Blogs, Things To Do in Qingdao

Qingdao – Die Grüne Insel

Qingdao, was soviel wie die Grüne Insel bedeutet,  ist eine Hafenstadt in der Provinz Shandong im Osten der Volksrepublik China. Heute leben und arbeiten rund 7 Millionen Menschen in Qingdao. Nicht nur der rapide Bevölkerungsanstieg, sondern auch das enorme Wirtschaftswachstum in den letzten Jahren macht Qingdao zu einer der wichtigsten Handelsmetropolen an der Ostküste Chinas.
Qingdao - Die Grüne Insel

Von 1898 bis 1919 gehörte die Stadt als Kolonie zum Deutschen Reich welcher der Grund für den charakteristisch deutschen Baustiel im Westen der Stadt ist. Weltweit bekannt ist die Küstenmetropole für ihr Bier namens Tsingtao, das seinen Ursprung in der deutschen Kolonialzeit hatte. Zudem wurden 2008 vor der Küste Qingdaos  die Segelwettbewerbe der Olympischen Sommerspiele von Peking ausgetragen was zu dem westlichen Charakter der Stadt beigetragen hat.

Wirtschaftlich entwickelte sich Qingdao in den letzten Jahren sehr schnell. Als Tiefseehafen ist Qingdao bedeutend für die ölverarbeitende Industrie und den Güterverkehr der gesamten Halbinsel Shandong. Der Hafen der Stadt ist der drittgrößte Hafen Chinas und der achtgrößte der ganzen Welt. Er gilt als  Chinas wichtigste Anlage zur Aufnahme von Erdöl und ist der größte Hafen für Eisenerzimporte. Als zweitwichtigster Hafen für den Außenhandel des Landes  soll sogar  in der Zukunft  den bisherigen Spitzenreiter Shanghai ablösen und größter Hafen der Welt werden.

Qingdao - Die Grüne Insel

Qingdao ist eine sehr westlich geprägte Stadt in welcher eine Vielzahl von europäischen und amerikanischen Unternehmen ansässig sind, welches zu einer zunehmenden Modernisierung der Stadt führt.  Qingdao ist jedodoch durch seine alte Geschichte und die zunehmende Industrialisirung eine sehr vielseitige Stadt und kann Besuchern und Touristen ein hohes Maß an chinesisch kulturellen sowie als auch sehr moderne Einblicke bieten. Neben dem sehr international geprägten Arbeitsumfeld kann man in Qingdao seine Freizeit wunderbar in einem der vielen kleinen Straßencaffee’s oder Restaurants verbringen oder auch einen der 7 verschiedenen Strände besuchen. Auch im Nachtleben steht Qingdao in nichts nach und kann mit anderen chinesischen Metropolen sehr gut mithalten. Es gibt eine Vielzahl an Bars, Restaurants und Nachtclubs in denen Einheimische mit Ausländern feiern und eine gute Zeit genießen.

In jeglicher Hinsicht ist Qingdao eine sehr unterhaltsame, interessante und sehr schöne Stadt die man während eines China Aufenthaltes auf jeden Fall mal besucht haben sollte.


Written by Anna Theves | Intern at InternChina