Using the Government Directly

Please be aware that if you are filing your application yourself, you should do an extensive amount of research before proceeding. Please call Citizenship and Immigration Canada to learn more and visit the Sponsorship pages to learn about everything you need to do to get your spouse to Canada. The information can be found on Citizenship Immigration Canada's website.

Marriage to a Chinese Citizen

Every country has its own laws that apply to its citizens marrying a person from a different country. Getting married to a Chinese citizen with the goal of eventually bringing them to Canada to live is a process with many steps. The Chinese government imposes strict requirements on foreigners who marry Chinese as an indirect way of discouraging Chinese citizens from moving to other countries.

Foreigners must apply for official permission from the Chinese government to marry a citizen of China. You must demonstrate to Chinese officials that they are not currently married to anyone else - either you have never been married or all divorces are finalized - that your identity is proven, and that you have never committed any crimes in China. This is done by providing various documents including an Affidavit of Single Status to the Chinese government either in China or via a Chinese embassy.

If you want to bring your Chinese spouse or partner to live in Canada, you must then file a sponsorship application for them to become a permanent resident. If they would like to visit you in Canada while their application is in process, they must also apply for a visitor visa. For more information, please see our family sponsorship page and our visitor visa page.

How We Can Help You Marry Your Chinese Fiance

To discuss the process to marry a citizen of China, contact us for a consultation. We can determine your eligibility to apply for permission to marry a Chinese as well as advise you how you can prove you meet the requirements.

Immigroup will assist you throughout the entire application process from start to finish, including:

  • Determining your eligibility to apply;
  • Determining the likelihood of success for your particular case;
  • Ensuring your forms are complete and accurately reflect the details of your case for maximum chance of success;
  • Ensuring you have the necessary and appropriate documents to support your application;
  • Providing guidance on the best method to submit your application to the Chinese government for your circumstances;
  • Advising the privileges a Chinese Marriage document affords you;
  • Offering Top Priority service for extremely urgent cases;
  • Determining the best way to proceed once the outcome of your case is reached (applying for family sponsorship, applying for a visitor visa for your Chinese partner, re-application if necessary, etc.)

Contact us for a consultation to assist you with the Chinese marriage process.

Processing Time

Once the necessary documents are gathered, it usually takes the Chinese government up to 3 weeks to authenticate the documents.

If you then file a Canadian sponsorship application for your Chinese spouse or partner, this application takes an average of 10-12 months.

A visitor visa application for your spouse or partner to visit you in Canada while the sponsorship applications are processing takes an average of 3 –14 days.

Please see our pages on family sponsorship and Canadian visitor visa for more information on the processing times of these applications.

Costs of the Process

Legal Fees

Our fees are on a case-by-case basis, but Immigroup service fees are usually around $950 for a Chinese Marriage application. Top Priority service for clients who need to marry their Chinese fiancé urgently carries additional costs.

If you do not know where you stand, whether you are eligible to marry a Chinese citizen, or how to proceed contact us for assistance.

Government Fees

In addition to the legal fees paid to a consultant or lawyer to assist you with this process, you must also pay a fee of up to $1300 Canadian dollars to the Chinese government for filing the application, depending on the consulate where the application is submitted and other factors affecting the applicants. To learn about the costs of the sponsorship process, click here.

Other Fees - Disbursement Fees

Because the only language recognized in Chinese is Chinese, documents must all be translated into Chinese to be included in an application. Documents are also sent to China and Chinese embassies by courier to ensure security, confidentiality, and confirmation of delivery. These costs are known as disbursement fees and are unique to each case; however the totalis typically less than $500 Canadian dollars.

Chinese Marriage Basic Requirements

To acquire a Chinese marriage certificate, Chinese-Canadian couples must produce the following documents;

Chinese Partner

  • A certificate of marriageability (The certificate is proof that the applicant is not currently married)
  • A certificate of birth
  • Household registration book (hukou)
  • A health certificate (obtainable from a regional-level local hospital)
  • A letter from the parents of the Chinese partner giving permission for their child to marry a foreigner (this letter should include the index fingerprint of both parents below their signatures and date)

Canadian Partner

  • A current passport
  • Chinese residence permit
  • A health certificate from a local hospital designated by the marriage registration office
  • Three photos of the marrying couple, taken together
  • A certificate of marriageability or Statement in lieu of Certificate of Non-Impediment to Marriage Abroad

For examples, see below.

 

Family Members

If your Chinese spouse has dependent children, this does not affect the Chinese Marriage document application.

If you have dependent children, they have no effect on the application to marry a Chinese citizen.

 

List of Chinese Consulates in Canada

Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Ottawa, Canada

Chinese Consulate General in Calgary, Canada

Chinese Consulate General in Toronto, Canada

Chinese Consulate General in Vancouver, Canada

Calling China

Given below is the dialing procedure to call China from Canada. You will find information on how to make an international call from Canada to China.

Calling China from Canada 

To make a direct call to China from Canada, you need to follow the international dialing format given in the box below. The dialing format is same for calling a mobile or land line from Canada.

To call China from Canada Dial

011 - 86 - Area Code - TEL #

Follow the dialing format shown above while calling China from Canada.

  •     011 - Exit code for Canada, and is needed for making any international call from Canada
  •     86 - ISD Code or Country Code of China
  • Area code - There are 338 area codes in China. Dial area code of the city in China you are calling after dialing ISD Code. For landlines area codes can number from 2-4 digits.
  • Cell phone numbers are normally 11 digits and usually begin with "1".

List of major area codes in China

 

Anshan 412 Huizhou 752 Taiyuan 351
Anyang 372 Jiangmen 750 Taizhou, JS 523
Baoding 312 Jilin 432 Taizhou, ZJ 576
Baotou 472 Jinan 531 Tangshan 315
Beijing 10 Jingzhou 716 Tianjin 22
Bengbu 552 Jining 537 Urumchi 991
Benxi 414 Jinzhou 416 Weifang 536
Changchun 431 Jixi 467 Wenzhou 577
Changde 736 Kunming 871 Wuhan 27
Changsha 731 Lanzhou 931 Wuxi 510
Changzhou 519 Linyi 539 Xi'an 29
Chengdu 28 Liuzhou 772 Xiamen 592
Chifeng 476 Luoyang 379 Xiangfan 710
Chongqing 23 Mianyang 816 Xiangtan 731
Chuzhou 550 Nanchang 791 Xianyang 29
Dalian 411 Nanjing 25 Xining 971
Daqing 459 Nanning 771 Xinxiang 373
Datong 352 Nanyang 377 Xuzhou 516
Dongguan 769 Neijiang 832 Yancheng 515
Foshan 757 Ningbo 574 Yangzhou 514
Fushun 413 Pingdingshan 375 Yantai 535
Fuyang 558 Qingdao 532 Yichang 717
Fuzhou 591 Qiqihar 452 Yichun 458
Guangzhou 20 Qinhuangdao 335 Yiyang 737
Guilin 773 Quanzhou 595 Yueyang 730
Guiyang 851 Shanghai 21 Zaozhuang 632
Haikou 898 Shantou 754 Zhangjiakou 313
Handan 310 Shaoguan 751 Zhanjiang 759
Hangzhou 571 Shenyang 24 Zhengzhou 371
Harbin 451 Shenzhen 755 Zhenjiang 511
Hefei 551 Shijiazhuang 311 Zhongshan 760
Hengyang 734 Suizhou 722 Zhuhai 756
Huaibei 561 Suzhou, AH 557 Zhuzhou 731
Huai'an 517 Suzhou, JS 512 Zibo 533
Huhehaote (Hohhot) 471 Tai'an 538 Zunyi 852

 

Calling Canada from China

To make a direct call to Canada from China, you need to follow the international dialing format given in the box below. The dialing format is same for calling Canada mobile or land line from China.

To call Canada from China Dial

00 - 1 - Area Code - TEL #

Follow the dialing format shown above while calling Canada from China.

    00 - Exit code for China, and is needed for making any international call from China

    1 - ISD Code or Country Code of Canada

    Area code - There are 18 area codes in Canada. The area code is the first three digits of your telephone number.

Province Code Province  Code
Alberta

403 / 587 (southern Alberta)

587 / 780 (central and northern Alberta)

Nunavut 867
BC

236 / 250 / 778 (majority of BC)

236 / 604 / 778 (Metro Vancouver)

Ontario

226 / 519 (southwestern Ontario)

249 / 705 (northeastern Ontario)

289 / 365 / 905 (Greater Toronto Area)

343 / 613 (eastern Ontario)

416 / 647 (Toronto)

807 (northwestern Ontario)

Manitoba 204 / 431 PEI 782 / 902
New  Brunswick 506 Quebec

418 / 581 (eastern Quebec)

438 / 514 (Montreal)

450 / 579 (Greater Montreal)

819 / 873 (remainder of Quebec)

Newfoundland and Labrador 709 Saskatchewan 306 / 639
Northwest Territories 867 Yukon 867
Nova Scotia 782 / 902    

 

When to call Canada from China - Time Difference

Knowing the time difference between the country from which you are calling and the recipient's country will ensure that you are not making untimely calls.

The time difference between Canada and China is depends on the time zone you are calling. China Standard Time is 8 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Canada’s time zones are 8 (PST), 7 (MST), 6 (CST), 5 (EST) or 4 (AST) hours behind GMT (except for Newfoundland, which is 3.5 hours behind) so the difference between China and Canada can be as much as 16 hours (for Vancouver) and as little as 12 hours (for Halifax).

Daylight-Saving Time

China does not use Daylight-Saving Time so the time difference changes depending on whether Canada is experiencing Daylight Savings or not. In the summer time you need to add an hour when calculating time difference. China is ahead of Canada. All numbers below refer to far ahead China Standard Time is from the Canadian time zone.

Canadian Province / Territory

Difference from China

Difference from China during Daylight Savings Time

Alberta

15 hours

14 hours

British Columbia

16 hours

15 hours

Manitoba

14 hours

13 hours

New Brunswick

12 hours

11 hours

Newfoundland Labrador

11.5 hours          

10.5 hours

Northwest Territories

15 hours

14 hours

Nova Scotia

12 hours

11 hours

Nunavut

15 hours

14 hours

Ontario (majority)

13 hours

12 hours

Ontario (northwest)

14 hours

13 hours

Prince Edward Island

12 hours

11 hours

Québec

13 hours

12 hours

Québec (east)

12 hours

12 hours

Saskatchewan

14 hours

14 hours

 Saskatchewan (Lloydminster only)

15 hours

14 hours

Yukon

16 hours

15 hours

From 2007, clocks following the new North American standard for Daylight Saving Time are to be turned forward by one hour on the second Sunday in March and turned back on the first Sunday of November.

 

Chinese Money

Traditional Chinese Coins By User 冷玉 on zh.wikipedia [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

The renminbi (literally "people's currency") is the legal tender in the mainland of the People's Republic of China. It is issued by the People's Bank of China (PBOC, central bank). The official abbreviation is CNY, although also commonly abbreviated as "RMB".

Chinese paper money usually comes in 1 fen (rare), 2 fen (rare), 5 fen (very rare), 1 jiao, 2 jiao, 5 jiao, 1 yuan, 2 yuan, 5 yuan,10 yuan, 20 yuan, 50 yuan and 100 yuan. These notes have been released four times since the founding of the PRC.

The 100-yuan banknote has two types, one in gray blue which was first released in 1990 while the other in red which was first released in 1999.

The 1990-type note has a portrait of four formerChinese leaders, namely Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai, Liu Shaoqi and Zhu De, on its front side while its back side contains the Jinggangshan Mountain in South China. Very few of the 1990 100-yuan paper notes types are still in circulated in China.

The below notes are from the "second series" from the 1950s.

1 Yuan - Front Side

1 Yuan - front. 1956 version

1 Yuan - Back Side

1 Yuan - back. 1956 version

 

5 Yuan - Front Side

5 Yuan - front. 1956 version

 

5 yuan - Back Side

5 yuan - back. 1956 version

 

1 Yuan is composed of 10 jiao, and 1 jiao is composed of 10 fen.

 

Emergency numbers and contact information for Canadians in China

 

Embassy of Canada in Beijing

19 Dongzhimenwai Dajie
Chao Yang District
Beijing 100600
Chima

Telephone: 86 (10) 5139-4000
Fax: 86 (10) 5139-4448 E-mail: beijing.consular@international.gc.ca Website: china.gc.ca

 

View Larger Map

Consulate of Canada in Chongqing

Room 1705, Metropolitan Tower, Wu Yi Lu
Yu Zhong District
Chongqing 400010
China

Telephone: 86 (23) 6373-8007
Fax: 86 (23) 6373-8026 E-mail: chonq@international.gc.ca Website: chongqing.gc.ca

 

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Consulate of Canada in Guangzhou

China Hotel Office Tower, Suite 801
Liu Hua Lu, Guangzhou
Guangdong 510015
China/p>

Telephone: 86 (20) 8611-6100
Fax: 86 (20) 8611-6196 E-mail: guangzhou.consular@international.gc.ca Website: guangzhou.gc.ca

 

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Consulate of Canada in Hong Kong

13th Floor, One Exchange Square, 8 Connaught Place
Central
Hong Kong SAR
China

Postal Address:
P.O. Box 11142, Hong Kong SAR China

Telephone: 85 (2) 3719 4700
Fax: 85 (2) 2847 7561 E-mail: hkong-cs@international.gc.ca Website: hongkong.gc.ca

 

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Consulate of China in Shanghai

ECO City Building, 8th floor, 1788 Nanjing Xi Lu
Jing An District
Shanghai, 200040
China

Telephone: 86 (21) 3279-2800
Fax: 86 (21) 3279-2801 E-mail: shanghai.consular@international.gc.ca
Website: shanghai.gc.ca

View Larger Map

Typical hours of operation are

Monday to Friday 08:30 - 12:00, 13:00-17:00

After Hours Emergency Contact Information (for Canadian Citizens Only)

Call collect: (613) 996-8885 / (613) 944-1310 (TTY) - The Emergency Operations Centre of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. An experienced officer is always available to respond to emergency calls from anywhere in the world.

You can also phone the numbers above and follow the recorded instructions to reach the Emergency Operations Centre.

The emergency services offered by the embassy  and consulate falls under the following categories:

  • Arrest or Detention
  • Child Abductions
  • Evacuations
  • Natural Disasters and Civil Emergencies
  • Financial Assistance
  • Lost or Stolen Belongings
  • Medical Matters
  •  Missing Persons
  • Passport
  • Accidents

 

Emergency Contacts in China

Chinese Emergency Phone Numbers

Beijing

Police: 110

Telephone Numbers: 114

Weather: 121

Taxicab Administration: 66012620

Airport Information: 66552515

Beijing Railway Station: 65128931

Beijing Municipal First-Aid Center: 120

European Assistance: 65053193-95

Shanghai

Police: 110

Telephone Numbers: 114

Weather: 121

First-Aid: 120

Ticket Service, China Eastern Air Company: 62475953 (International) 62472255 (Domestic)

Ticket Service, Shanghai Air Company: 62681551

Hongqiao International Airport: 62688918

Shanghai Railway Station: 63179090

Passenger Service, Shanghai Harbor: 63261261

Guangzhou

Police: 110

Telephone Numbers: 114

Weather: 121

Municipal First-Aid/Medical Dispatcher: 120

Baiyun Airport: 86666123

International Passenger Service: 86661803

Ticket Service, China Southern Air Company: 83312332

Guangzhou Railway Station: 86661789

Guangzhou Taxicab Company: 86662014

Zhoutouzui Passenger Service (Hong Kong and Macao Lines), Guangzhou Harbor: 84449495

 

Marriage Registration in China

International marriages are increasingly becoming the norm  and marriages between foreigners and Chinese citizens are no exception.  The laws and procedures governing international marriages vary in every country worldwide.  There are various issues that may cause a marriage to be considered invalid in some countries but not in others due to cultures, traditions and laws of that country. For example such as the minimum age a person may marry and the possibility of having multiple spouses.  You should bear in mind that even though your country may recognize your overseas marriage, it may not provide an automatic right for your spouse to become a citizen of your country without due application to that effect.  In the same way a foreigner has no automatic right to live in China or become a Chinese citizen just because he or she has married a Chinese citizen.  However, as from June 1, 2010, foreigners who have Chinese spouse living in China were and are still considered eligible to apply for a Family Visit Visa/Residence Permit within China.

Administration of marriages is undertaken by municipal Civil Affairs Bureau. Couples are required to go to the office under the jurisdiction in which the Chinese partner is registered on her or his hukou.  According to the Chinese law, the persons marrying must be of marriageable age; men must not be less than 22 years while women not less than 20 years old. The law may allow one couple or both to marry while below the mentioned ages only by parental consent which must be granted in writing.   Having more than one husband or wife in any country at the time of marriage is not permitted under Chinese law (Bigamy).  Marriages can only be between a male and a female but not between persons of the same gender.The application is equivalent to a civil marriage in many western countries but it is entirely administrative, there is no ceremony at all.  The event normally takes well under one hour, sometimes as little as 15 minutes. 

 

Documents needed to acquire a Chinese marriage certificate

To acquire a Chinese marriage certificate, couples must produce the following documents;

Chinese Partner

  • A certificate of marriageability (The certificate is proof that the applicant is not currently married
  • A certificate of birth
  • Household registration book (hukou)
  • A health certificate (obtainable from a regional-level local hospital)
  • A letter from the parents of the Chinese partner giving permission for their child to marry a foreigner (this letter should include the index fingerprint of both parents below their signatures and date)

Foreign Partner

  • A current passport
  • Chinese residence permit
  • A health certificate from a local hospital designated by the marriage registration office
  • Three photos of the marrying couple, taken together
  • Notarized translations in Chinese of all original documents not in Chinese (accept the passport.  There are official translators who provide this service in China.

 

Certificate of marriageability

Basically, the marriage registration office needs a form from the foreign partner's home government confirming thathe/she is not already married in his/her home country. Every foreign government has its own version of this type of form with its own requirements for obtaining one.  A foreign partner will have to contact his/her embassy in China for details on how to obtain this kind of certification. You must bear in mind that Chinese translations must accompany foreign-language documents.

 

What Canadian Citizens wishing to Marry Chinese Citizens in China must know

Marriage application requirements may vary from office to office. When an individual visits the appropriate marriage registration office to pick up an application form, he /she should find out the following;

  • The local hospital(s) the foreign partner must receive a medical check-up.
  •  The office requirements pertaining to their marriage application.

After the establishment of the new Chinese marriage law, it takes the marriage registration office about an hour or so to review the submitted documents and approve the application.

You need to know that the legal age for marriage in the PRC is different from that in Canada. The legal age for a male is 22 and for a female, 20. Bigamy is illegal.

You need to prepare the following documents;

  • Certificate of non-spouse: the certificate must include your name, date of birth, place of birth, nationality, passport ID, marital status (never married/ divorced/ widowed) and the name of the person you wish to marry in both Chinese characters and in English. If you have been divorced, the certificate of non-spouse needs to include your former spouse’s name and nationality and the divorce certificate attached. For the widowed, the death certificate must be attached.
  • Certificate of employment or reliable income: if you are employed, a letter from the employer will suffice. If you are self-employed, you need to swear an affidavit to your reliable income. You can do so at your lawyer’s office.

After you have obtained the two certificates listed above, you need to get them notarized and translated into Chinese by a certified translator. The translator needs to swear an affidavit before a notary public.

After the translation is done, bring both the original documents and the translated ones to the Ministry of Government Services – Document Services to verify the authenticity of the notary. 

After the documents have been verified by the Ministry, the final step is to have them legalized by the Chinese consulate. The cost of legalization is $30 for each document (expedited service costs extra), payable only by debit or money order. Personal attendance at the consulate is required along with a valid passport and visa. Discounted money orders for use at the Chinese 

 

 

Samples of Chinese Marriage Certificates

A Chinese marriage certificate looks like a passport

The certificates of Marriage shown below contain the following information;

  • Full name of man
  • Full name of woman
  • Date of marriage
  • Photos of married couple
  • Place of marriage
  • City and Province of marriage
  • Chop (stamped seal)
  • Signatures of both married parties
  • Contain information about Chinese laws regarding marriages

 

Chinese Residence Permit

The residence permit allows you to live in China while preparing for and celebrating your marraige.

 

Traditions & Customs of China

The Chinese way of life is full of traditions and customs. The extent of the application of these customs and traditions varies between different regions in China and between the Chinese people living throughout the world. Some traditions and customs may no longer be practiced due to the influence of western culture. 

 

Wedding Traditions

Marriage as a custom came into force between 402 and 221 BC. Despite China's long history and many different geographical regions, there are six essential and common rituals known generally as the three letters and six etiquettes.  For some traditional families, unfortunately the wife's mother cannot visit her son-in-law's family until after one year from the date of the wedding. However, during this one year the daughter can visit her family at any time.

Ever since ancient times, there has been a saying that the three most delightful moments in one's life come with success in the imperial examination, marriage and the birth of a son. From the Qin (221 BC – 206 BC) to Qing (1644 – 1911) Dynasties, the feudal system dominated over two thousand years. During this period, the importance of getting married was far more than that a person found his better half. For the male side, it determined the prosperity and even the future fame of their family; while for the female side, it meant that parents lost the chance of seeing their daughter for a long time. Thus to choose an ideal partner was vital for both the individual and the family.

In feudal society, a marriage would be decided not by a young couple's love, but by their parents' desires. Only after a matchmaker's introduction and when parents considered the two family conditions were similar and could be matched, would the marriage procedures go forward. Conditions that should be taken into consideration included wealth and social status. If a boy's family was well-off or an official family, his parents would never permit him to marry a girl from a poor family. Essential to the marriage process were the commonly recognized 'three Letters and six etiquettes'.

Three Letters and Six Etiquettes

The three letters were the betrothal letter, the gift letter with a gifts list and the wedding letter used on the day the bridegroom met his bride at her home.

Six etiquettes that lead to the final wedding ceremony.

  • Proposing: when the boy's parents intend to make a match, they would invite a matchmaker to propose with them at the girl's home. It was the custom that the first time matchmaker went as a guest they could not be served tea in order not to 'lighten the marriage'. If the proposal was successful, however, the matchmaker (usually a woman) would be rewarded with profuse gifts and feasts to show the two families' gratitude. Many unmarried young people could not see and were unfamiliar with each other till their wedding day.

Woman Matchmaker

 

  • Birthday Matching: after knowing the girl's full name and birthday, they would ask a fortune teller to predict whether that could match their son's and whether there would be a happy marriage. The Chinese zodiac surely would be taken into consideration.
  • Presenting Betrothal Gifts:  If the match was predicted to be auspicious, the matchmaker would inform the girl's parents that the process could continue. Up to three months or earlier before the wedding day, the groom will deliver the betrothal gifts to the bride's family on an auspicious date.
  • The gifts are often in even number for the meaning of in couple and in pairs. Usually they are good wines, nice tea and jewelry for the bride. The jewelry includes ear-rings, necklace, bracelet, and rings in gold. In some places, they are also combined with some local food, such as peanuts and dates.
  • Presenting Wedding Gifts: This was the grandest etiquette of the whole process of engagement. Prolific gifts were presented again to the girl's family, symbolizing respect and kindness towards the girl's family as well as the capability of providing a good life for the girl.

Presenting Wedding Gifts

 

Traditional Grand Gifts include the following items: Li Shi Money, jewelries, dragon-phoenix cakes, dried seafood, mushroom and Fat Cai, poultries, fish, coconut, wine or liquor, a Tie Box with dried fruits, raw fruit, Bin Lang and tea.

Li Shi Money

 

 

Jewelries

Chinese Traditional Wedding Earrings

 

Wedding jewelry

 

 

3 tier Chinese wedding cake with dragon phoenix

 

Chinese Traditional dried fish

 

Chinese traditional Mushrooms

 

 

Golden Chinese Wedding Coconut

 

 

 

Chinese Traditional Alcoholic Beverage

 

The traditional wedding gifts are given over a period of several days and the purpose in the Chinese tradition is for these gifts to be used for ancestral worship.

Selecting the Wedding Date:

The boy's family asked the fortune-teller to choose a date according to the astrological book when it would be proper and propitious to hold the wedding ceremony.

Wedding Ceremony:

The wedding ceremony began with the groom and his people meeting the bride in her home. Before this day the bride's dowry would have been sent to the girl’s house.  As a rule, Chinese wedding tradition requires the bride’s dowry to be sent to the bridegroom’s family a day before the wedding. The traditional dowry usually consisted of symbolic items that were a must in a traditional marriage such as scissors, a pair of pillows, shoes, clothes, chopsticks tied in a red ribbon and bowls, plus jewelry, embroidered bedding, kitchen utensils and furniture. The dowry represented her social status and wealth, and would be displayed at the girl's house.

Before the wedding ceremony, the bride would be assisted by a respectable old woman to tie up her hair with colorful cotton threads. She would wear a red skirt as Chinese believed red foreshadowed delight. Before the ceremony commenced, the bride was covered by a red head-kerchief, she had to cry with her mother to show her reluctance to leave her home. She would be led or carried by her elder brother to the sedan. On the arrival of the sedan at the wedding place, there would be music and firecrackers. The bride would be led along the red carpet in a festive atmosphere. The bridegroom, also in a red gown, would kowtow three times to worship the heaven, parents and spouse. Then the new couple would go to their bridal chamber and guests would be treated to a feast. Wine was poured to the brim of a cup but it was not to spill over.

On the night of the wedding day, there was a custom in some places for relatives or friends to banter the newlyweds. Though this seemed a little noisy, both of them dropped shyness and got familiar with each other.

Three days after the wedding, the newlyweds would pay a visit to the bride's family at home. At this time, the bride would no longer be considered a part of her family, but rather a guest in her parents' house. They would be received and a dinner party was prepared for them and relatives. These marriage traditions and customs have been maintained for thousands of years, but in recent years (especially after the founding of modern China), people have begun to discard some of the traditions and advocate s for simple marriage procedures and wedding ceremonies.

 

Chinese Traditional Wedding Dresses

Many wedding dresses in China are colored red, the traditional color of good luck and auspiciousness.

A Chinese wedding color tradition         

For Chinese brides, red is the traditional color and not white. This red wedding color applies to also many other East Asian cultures. Red is central to the wedding theme of China. From invitations, wedding favors, and to wedding dress, it’s going to involve around the color red. From the decorations to the bride’s wedding dress, you will see red somewhere unless the bride wants to cause her poor folks a massive stroke not showing even a bit of tradition.

Chinese Bridal Dress

The Chinese wedding customs are deeply rooted. The traditional color for Chinese wedding dress is usually red.

 

Qing dynasty-style traditional southeastern Chinese wedding dress (still used in modern day weddings.)

 

Chinese Traditional Wedding Dresses Image

This is a picture of Chinese wedding dress. The specific characteristic of Chinese wedding dress is the color which is bright.

 

Chinese Bridal Dress

The Chinese wedding customs are deeply rooted. The traditional color for Chinese wedding dress is usually red.

 

Chinese Wedding Favors

In traditional Chinese weddings, it is customary for the newly wedded couple to bestow gifts upon their ceremonial guests. Usually small trinkets meant to be enjoyed by guests, gifts are given by the married couple to thank everyone in attendance for their well wishes and support on their wedding day. Appropriate wedding favors from Chinese brides and grooms include porcelain tea cups, sake sets, potpourri, herbs, candy, mints and flowers.

Porcelain tea cups

 

Sake sets

The good fortune Chinese Sake Set includes four sake cups and a sake pitcher.

 

Chinese Potpourri Dish

 

Chinese Traditional Herbs

Chinese herbal medicine is an integral part of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

 

Chinese Traditional Candy

Caramel haw (冰糖葫芦; bingtang hulu) is a traditional Chinese candy made by dipping haw-on-a-stick in hot caramel… it can be done with other fruits as well, obviously

Traditional Chinese Flower

 

Polygamy

The traditional Chinese culture does not prohibit or explicitly encourage polygamy (except as a way to obtain a male child).

The practice of polygamy in China is limited by the number of women available, as well as the financial capability of the man. This is because he has to be in a position to take care of the women. Therefore polygamy is mostly limited to parts of the upper and middle class. The rest of the population only practices monogamy due to lack of resources to take care of many women.

 

Christmas Traditions in China

The Christmas Traditions in China have become very popular in recent years, mainly in big cities like Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou as a result of  large number of European immigrants  living in those cities. Since the larger population in China is not Christians, Christmas is not an official holiday in China. The small number of Christians in China refers to Christmas as Sheng Dan Jieh, which literarily means Holy Birth Festival. They decorate their homes using posters, evergreens and bright paper chains. The families puts up a decorated Christmas tree, called "tree of light," using beautiful lanterns, flowers, and red paper chains which basically symbolizes happiness. They cut out red pagodas to paste on the windows, and they light their houses with paper lanterns, too.

Many Chinese enjoy the good time, fun and color that Christmas brings during winter season. Big Chinese cities like, Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong are gaily decorated during Christmas.

Many people plan parties on Christmas Eve in their houses while others enjoy dinner at a restaurant. Shops sell plastic trees for Christmas decorations for everyone to enjoy.  Santa Claus is a popular good-luck figure.

The Christmas season is ushered in with fireworks.

During Christmas, as people make merry and feast, they are entertained by Jugglers and acrobats. In Hong Kong, Christmas Day is just one of seventeen public holidays.

During Christmas season, the people in Hong Kong also celebrate Ta Chiu, which is a festival of renewal and peace, by making offerings to saints and reading the names of everyone who lives in the area.

On Christmas Eve, Christian children in China hang up their muslin stockings that so that Dun Che Lao Ren, or "Christmas Old Man," can fill them with wonderful gifts. Santa Claus is also known as Lan Khoong-Khoong, "Nice Old Father."

 

Chinese New Year

Origin of Chinese New Year

The New Year celebrations in China hold a profound rooted history of its own. According to Chinese mythology, once, there used to live a giant beast under the sea or on the mountains known as Nian, who used to swallow many human beings back in those days. The natives who were troubled then found one weakness in the beast. They realized that the beast was afraid of the red color and loud noises. Since then, they started burning firecrackers and using red color in order to keep the giant beast scared and away from them. After they got a permanent solution to the beasts’ frequent attacks, they started celebrating the day as GuNian , Pass over the Nian or New Year

Lion dance portraying the Nian

 

Among the Chinese holidays, the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays  is the New Year. It is known as "Spring Festival,” in China.  Since the spring season in Chinese calendar begins with lichun, which is the first solar term in a Chinese calendar year. It marks the tail end of the winter season, similar to the Western cultures. The festival begins on the first month and on the first day in the traditional Chinese calendar and ends with Lantern Festival which is always on the 15th day of the month.

 

The Chinese New Year's Eve is a day that Chinese people gather with their families for their annual reunion celebrations. Since the Chinese calendar is lunisolar therefore the Chinese New Year is always referred to as the "Lunar New Year".

The Chinese New Year is the longest and the most important celebration in the Chinese calendar. The Chinese New Year has gained significance because of several myths and traditions associated with it.

In China, regional traditions and customs concerning the celebration of the Chinese New Year differs considerably. People will buy presents, decoration materials, food and clothing. It is also traditional for every family to thoroughly cleanse the house as a way sweeping away any ill-fortune, bad luck and to make way for incoming good luck. The Chinese people will decorate windows and doors using the red color paper-cuts  which is considered to be full of "good fortune" or "happiness", "wealth", and "longevity".

A Paper cut "Window Flower" during Chinese New Year

 

Chinese character for "good fortune".

 

On the Eve of Chinese New Year,   families organize a dinner feast to celebrate. Food prepared during the New Year’s Eve includes; duck, chicken, Pigs and other amazing Chinese delicacies. The families will end the night with firecrackers. Early the next morning, children will greet their parents and wishing them a healthy and happy new year and they will receive money in red paper envelopes in return.

 

Money in red paper envelopes

 

The significance of Chinese New Year tradition is to forgive, reconcile, forget all  the wrong done to an individual and sincerely wish everyone peace and happiness .

 

Traditional divorce process        

In traditional Chinese society, there are three main ways to dissolve a marriage.

The first one is no-fault divorce. According to the legal code of the Tang Dynasty (618-907), a marriage may be dissolved due to personal incompatibility, provided that the husband writes a divorce note.

The second way is through state-mandated annulment of marriage. This applies when one spouse commits a serious crime. It usually directed towards women mostly.

Thirdly the husband may single-handedly declare a divorce. To be legal and binding, the divorce must be based on one of the following seven reasons;

  • The wife lacks filial piety towards her parents-in-law. This makes the parents-in-law potentially capable of breaking a marriage against both partners' wills.
  • If she fails to bear a son.
  • If she is vulgar or lewd/adulterous.
  • If she is jealous. This may include objecting to her husband’s decision of taking an additional wife or a concubine.
  • If she has a vile disease.
  • If she is the gossiping type.
  • If she commits an act of stealing.

The above stated reasons can be manipulated to favor the husband and his family side. There are, however, three clearly defined exceptions, under which unilateral divorce is forbidden despite the existence of the seven mentioned reasons:

  • If she has no family to return to.
  • If she had observed a full, three-year mourning for a parent-in-law.
  • If her husband was poor by the time they got married and consequently they amassed wealth together.

The above law concerning unilateral divorce was in force from Tang Dynasty up to its final abolition in the Republic of China's Civil Code (Part IV) Section 5, passed in 1930.

 

Chinese Food

Hui Cuisine (Anhui Cuisine or Wan Cuisine)

It is one of the eight famous cuisines of China, derived from North China's Anhui Province. Anhui Cuisine mainly consists of three styles representing three regions: Yangtze River region, Huai River region, and Southern Anhui region

 

Cantonese Cuisine (Yue Cuisine)

Cantonese Cuisine, also known as Yue Cuisine is the culinary style of Guangdong Province, which was called Canton when the Wade-Giles Romanization of Chinese was in use. This particular type of Chinese food has been popularized by Chinese restaurants around the world as the majority of those who set up these restaurants were of Cantonese origin.

 

Min Cuisine

Min Cuisine, also called Fujian Cuisine, originates from South China's Fujian Province. The history of Min Cuisine dates back to 5000 years ago. It consists of three styles, namely Fuzhou style, which is usually tastes light compared with other styles, often with a mixed sweet and sour taste; Western Fujian style, featuring slightly spicy flavoring from mustard and pepper; and Southern Fujian style, which usually tastes spicy and sweet.

 

Hunan cuisine (Xiang cuisine)

Hunan cuisine, also called Xiang cuisine, stems from a province that has an age-old reputation as a "land of fish and rice". Hunan Province has always been a cornucopia as far as foodstuffs go. The salient features of Hunan cuisine are richness, creaminess, and moistness, combined with a delicate use of chili. Hunan cuisine is also fragrant, with crunchy fresh vegetables that are cooked "al dente".

 

Jiangsu Cuisine (Su Cuisine)

Jiangsu Cuisine, called Su Cuisine for short, originates from the native cooking styles of South China's Jiangsu Province. It has a fresh taste, with moderate saltiness and sweetness, which is thick without being greasy and light without being thin. Meanwhile it places an emphasis on the making of soup and retaining the original taste of the ingredients. Once it was the second largest cuisine among ancient China's royal cuisines, and it remains a major part of the state banquet in China.

 

Chuan Cuisine

Sichuan Cuisine is the most widely served cuisine in China. The dishes of Sichuan Cuisine are famous for their hot and spicy flavor. An outstanding facet of Sichuan dishes is the delicate use of pepper or chili. The ingredients used are great in variety, including poultry, pork, beef, fish, vegetables and tofu.

 

Zhejiang cuisine (Zhe cuisine)

Zhejiang cuisine, called Zhe cuisine for short, is originated from South China's Zhejiang Province. It is famous for its mellow, yet not greasy, taste.

 

Lu Cuisine (Shandong Cuisine)

Lu Cuisine, also called Shandong Cuisine, is originated from the native cooking styles of East China's Shandong Province. Its history can date back to Qin Dynasty (221 BC to 207 BC). It has become one of China's eight cuisines since Song Dynasty (960 AD to 1234 AD). It is the most prevalent distinct regional cuisine in China, popular throughout Beijing, Tianjin and Northeast China.

 

Religion in China

The Chinese religions are family-oriented and do not demand the exclusive adherence of members.  The questions of what should be called religion and who should be called religious in China is still being debated.

Buddhism remains the main popular religion in China since its inception in the 1st century. One of the largest groups of religious traditions in China is the Chinese folk religion. It is also referred to as "Shenism", a term used to name Chinese folk religions collectively, as the ethnic religion of the Hans, which includes Taoism, and the worship of the shens, a combination of various local ethnic deities, heroes and ancestors, and figures from Chinese mythology, among which the most popular ones in recent times have been Mazu (goddess of the seas, patron of Southern China), Huangdi (divine patriarch of all the Chinese), the Black Dragon, Caishen (god of prosperity and richness), and others.

Gandhara Buddha (Buddhism)

Standing Buddha is one of the earliest known representations of the Buddha, 1st-2nd century CE, Gandhara

Gandhara Buddha

 

 

Wiki taijo

Statue of a Taizu deity (deified important ancestor).

Wiki taijo By Rayrayraychan (ray chan) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Mazu (goddess)

Statue of Mazu. Mazu is the most popular goddess in Southern Chinese provinces and Taiwan.

Matsu By A16898 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Temple of Cai-shen (god of prosperity and richness)

Temple of Cai-Shen By 龍本 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Although Christianity in China had a strong presence since the 7th century it did decline as a result of mistreatment during the 10th -14th centuries. It was reintroduced in the 16th century by  missionaries. Today Shenism-Taoism and Buddhism are the largest religions in China with respectively over 30% (of which 160 million, or 11% of the total population of the country, are Mazuists and 18–20%of the population practicing them, growing  throughout the country as the government is allowing them to spread. About 10% of the population is composed of those people regarded as non-Han ethnicitieswho are following their traditional tribal religions.  Christians are 3–4% of the population. Muslims are 1–2%. The biggest part of the population, which ranges between 60% - 70%, is mostly agnostic or atheist. Confucianism is popular among intellectuals as a religion.

China has many of the tallest statues, including the tallest of all in the world.

Spring Temple Buddha, the tallest statue in the world By Zgpdszz (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Most of them represent Buddhasand religious personalities which were built many centuries back. The world's tallest statue is the Spring Temple Buddha.  It is located in Henan. Among other tall statues in China includes pagoda andstupa.

 

Examples of Temples in China

The Iron Pagoda of Kaifeng, China, built in 1049 AD.

Iron Pagoda of Kaifeng By Gary Lee Todd, Ph.D., Professor of History, Sias International University, Xinzheng, Henan, China. [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Famen temple in Shaanxi province (China).

The imposing stupa enshrining the relic of Shakyamuni Buddha's finger bone, at Famen Temple, a Buddhist complex in Baoji, Shaanxi.

Famen Temple By Peter17 (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Temple of Guandi, Jinan, Shandong, China

Temple of Guandi By User:Vmenkov (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Golden Temple at the summit of Emei Shan, in Sichuan. Emei Shan is one of the Four Sacred Mountains of Chinese Buddhism.

Golden Summit of Emei Shan By Martin Wettig (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Anshan Jade Buddha, the largest jade statue in the world, in the Jade Buddha Temple, Anshan, Liaoning.

Ashan Jade Buddha By Rincewind42 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

 

Statue of Confucius at a temple in Chongming, Shanghai.

Statue of Confucius on Chongming By Mamin27 at en.wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

 

Examples of Christian Churches in China

Zhushu Christian Church - Xiamen

Zhushu Church is one of the oldest churches in China. In August 1847, 2 American missionaries rented a local building as a preaching venue. Twelve years later, they finally raised 1300 silver dollars and built a church.

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Haidian Christian Church - Beijing

Haidian Christian ChurchBy Berling Family (originally posted to Flickr as Christian Church) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Haidian Christian Church was founded in 1915 and it has served the community for almost a century. It was the Christians in Qinghua University who first donated and purchased six commercial apartments on Haidian South Street. Under the supervision of Rev. Li Benyuan, renovations were completed and the church was named “the Evangelical China Fellowship”. It was officially opened on October 6, 1915.

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Xuanwumen Catholic Church - Beijing

"South" Beijing Churh by http://www.flickr.com/photos/bibbit/

141 Xuanwumen East Street, Xicheng, Beijing, China

Tel: +86 10 6603 7139

Opening hours: 6:00-9:00 (3 hours for each day)

Xuanwumen Catholic Church is also known as the South Church. It is currently the Diocesan Cathedral. It is the oldest Catholic cathedral in Beijing. It was on this site that P. Matteo Ricci first built a small scripture hall in 1605 (Wanli 33rd Year of Ming Dynasty), which was later rebuilt by the German Jesuit priest J.A. Schall von Bell in 1650. This structure became the first church in Beijing city proper.

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Xinjie Christian Church - Xiamen

Xinjie Christian Church

Xinjie Church has the reputation as the first Christian Church for the Chinese Church - as opposed to a European denomynation. Its history can be traced back to 1842.

 

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church

Our Lady of Rosary Church was built in 1860 by Italians. It is located at 15 Cin Lu, Xiamen City with a land area of 413 square meters.

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Moore Memorial Church in Shanghai

Moore Memorial Church By user:Kwz (own work of user:Kwz) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Moore Memorial Church is a Christian Church established by American missionaries in 1887 and expanded in 1931 to accommodate more than 1,000 worshippers. It has built up a local membership numbering thousands since its inception.

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Grace Church‎ - Shanghai

25 Wulumuqi North Road

Jing'an, Shanghai, China

021-62580451

Grace Church‎ is a Christian church conducting masses in both English and Chinese. This red brick church and bell tower is part of a structure originally built by missionaries in 1910 and has since became the home of Christianity in Shanghai.

 

Christ All Saints Church - Shanghai

425 Fuxing Middle Road

Luwan, Shanghai, China

Tel. 021-63850906

Christ All Saints Church is a Christian church built in 1925 by Episcopal Church situated in America. It is a typical 17th Century Church with a wooden spire steeple with main and side halls. The Church also has a rose window and bell tower. The red brick, triangle roof, and concrete-engraving doorpost are amongst its best features. The main hall can accommodate 500 people while an attached annex hall and the small hall can accommodate 1000 people.

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St. Peter's Church  - Shanghai

 

270 Chongqing South Road

Luwan, Shanghai, China

Tel: 021-64670198, 67678181.

St. Peter's Church was built in the 1930s in Shanghai.  St. Peter's Church continues to be full every worshipping day with worshippers from around the globe. The frequent worshippers that attend this church are those that speak English, Korean, French, and German.

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Romantic, Scenic and Historic Places in China

China is a beautiful and amazing country.  It has so many beautiful and lovely places for holidays, weddings and honeymoons. When you plan a trip, choosing one destination over another becomes a problem on its own. If you are looking for some romantic places to nurture, build, foster, repair or rediscover your Love in a romantic and exotic environment, China will not let you down.

 

Hotels

Beijing

Lu Song Yuan Hotel

 

Lu Song Yuan Hotel is located on the former compound of 19th century general; the hotel has small rooms furnished with antiques and a friendly staff. Set in an historical hutong neighborhood of old Beijing, it is convenient to the Forbidden City and other historical sites.

 

4 Banqiao Courtyard Guesthouses

 

The hotel combines a traditional house with modern conveniences such as internet access. This romantic hotel is located in an historic hutong residential quarter, convenient to subway lines, taxis and historic sites. The courtyard has a bomb shelter which is being converted into a wine cellar and is open for tour.

 

Red Capital Residence

 

Red Capital Residence is a 5 suite hotel which is affiliated with the trendy Red Capital Club restaurant. It was carefully restored by traditional craftsmen. It is located in Beijing's Dongsi heritage district.  It was once a private courtyard home for the politically well-connected individuals. 

 

Hotel Côté Cour 

 

Hotel Côté Cour SL is a 500 year old house where Ming dynasty entertainers for the Imperial court stayed. It is now a boutique hotel located in an historical hutong district of Old Beijing.

 

Bamboo Garden Hotel

 

Bamboo Garden Hotel is a former mansion residence of a minister of Qing dynasty (1646-1911).  This hutong courtyard hotel is located in the bamboo wooded Houhai Lake region of old Beijing.

 

Pingyao  (Shanxi province)

Jing's Residence Hotel

 

Jing's Residence is a luxurious house located in Old Town was once the residence of a Qing dynasty silk merchant. Its rooms are spread around four interlocking courtyards and have lacquer headboards and kang-style beds, all made by local artisans.

 

Shanghai

Mansion Boutique Hotel

 

Mansion Boutique Hotel was designed by a French architect in 1932. It is a five story white limestone hotel that captures the essence of old Shanghai with an artful blend of Classic French and Asian ambiance. It overlooks the former French Concession and was originally the club house of Du Yue-Sheng, China's most powerful syndicate boss.

 

Ruijin Hotel

 

Ruijin Hotel is built on a100 acre fenced compound with lovely gardens and ground. It consists of 1930’s-era buildings in the middle of the French Concession.  It is a romantic hotel overlooking beautiful gardens.

 

Beaches

Hainan Province

 

Yalong Bay Beach

 

Yalong Bay Beach is crescent-shaped, 7,000 meter long. If you want to have fun, enjoyment and a private beachside experience, then this is the right beach for you. The beach is not crowded and the following amenities are provided; beach umbrellas, cocktails, tanning lotions, and hammocks. The Yalong Bay is located at a distance of 35 km from the airport in Sanya.

 

Dadonghai Beach

 

Dadonghai Beach is located 2 kilometers from downtown Sanya. The beach is colorful has a conducive environment, full of entertainment and beachside stalls are also available.

 

Sanya Bay Beach

 

Sanya Bay Beach is the most visited, accessible and popular beach in the area. It is located in the suburbs of Sanya. The beach is 15m long. The best and the most distinct feature about the beach that makes it popular is it’s location and its close proximity to the city center. Visitors tend to enjoy the beautiful view at this beach.

 

Shimei Bay Beach

 

The blue sky and the crystal clear water is what characterize Shimei Bay. The beach stretches for 6 km and the sand looks like powdered silver. The visibility of the beach and the mild waves make it a great location for snorkelers and divers. The beach is surrounded by lush green hills.   

 

Wuzhizhou Island  

 

Wuzhizhou Island is located at a distance of 2.7 km from Linwang town in Sanya. This is a beach lover’s dream come true. The beach offers several activities like scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, jet skiing, and banana boat rides and much more. Beach volleyball and parachute bungee jumps are popular activities at this beach.

 

Historic Places

Old Beijing / Forbidden City

This is home to historic palaces, forts and villas where the emperors, generals and scholars of China lived and ruled. The historic 2008 Olympic stadium, the Forbidden City, string of lakes, including picturesque and Houhai Lake are all in one place.  

 

The Great Wall of China

 

The Great Wall of China is one of the greatest wonders of the world. It was listed as a World Heritage by UNESCO in 1987. Just like a gigantic dragon, the Great Wall winds up and down across deserts, grasslands, mountains and plateaus, stretching approximately 8,851.8 kilometers (5,500 miles) from east to west of China.

 

Aman at Summer Palace

 

Originally the guesthouse for the empress dowager, this sprawling compound of historic and new build structures adjoins the Summer Palace gardens.

 

Harbin

 

Harbin is the largest city of Heilongjiang Province.  It is located on the north of Yellow River, Yangtze River and north of Beijing. It is an icy city and recommended for winter romance. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Jimingyi

 

Jimingyi is an ancient postal station that is tiny and rustic located in Hebei Province. It was a nearly fallen pavilion built at the city gate, where the Monkey King, played by Hong Kong veteran comedian Stephen Chow, kissed the female protagonist actress, celestial Zixia. That cinematic kiss was considered and still is as a classical one, especially to those who were born in those days.  It is considered as a place to relive such a vivid romance. 

 

The Bund

 

The Bund is an area of Huangpu District in central Shanghai. It derived its name from a desolate beach outside the old Shanghai City. As one of the most famous tourist destinations in Shanghai, the Bund is surrounded by over 20 amazing architectures.

The Bund after dark in Shanghai:

 

Lijiang

 

The ancient town of Lijiang is a vibrant place for romance and is located in Yunnan province. Cobblestone paths, charming wooden buildings nestled close to one another, local ethnic minorities in exotic costumes, pubs full of globetrotters. A Valentine's Day spent in Lijiang will be most memorable.

Major Traditional Festivals in China

Ching Ming Festival

Ching Ming Festival is also known as the Grave sweeping festival or the Spring Remembrance festival. It is normally celebrated on 5th April. Ching Ming festival is an ancient festival of China and is basically dedicated to ancestors' worship

Burning paper gifts for the departed

 

Tin Hau Festival

Tin Hau Festival is celebrated in the month of April or in early May and is basically dedicated to Goddess of the Sea regionally known as Tin Hau. There are numerous holy shrines constructed in her glory along the coastal areas of China.

A Mazu statue (Goddess of the sea)

 

The Dragon Boat Festival

The Dragon Boat festival  is normally celebrated on the 5th day of the 5th moon in the month of June. Over the years this festival has become the most exciting festival in Hong Kong. The highlights of this festival include intricately designed, colorfully painted dragon boats. Dragon Boat festival is also known as Tuen Ng Festival.

Dragon Boat Festival

 

Cheung Chau Festival

Cheung Chau Festival is also called the Festival of Bun Hills. Cheung Chau festival normally occurs in the month of May. The celebration includes parades, opera performances and the breath-taking trait of bun towers-large bamboo structure heaped with sweet buns.

 

Cheung Chaubun Mountain

A mountain of buns to be climbed during the festival

 

Birthday of Buddha

The birthday of Lord Buddha is one of the most important events in China. It is held on the 8th day of the fourth moon. China's people celebrate the birthday of Buddha in the Mahayana tradition. On this auspicious occasion thousands of devotees pray for forgiveness of their sins and for acquiring wisdom and peace. According to the western calendar, the birthday celebration is follows:

  • 2011: 10 May
  • 2012: 28 April (28 May in South Korea, 29 May for Tibetan Buddhists, May 6 in India)
  • 2013: 17 May
  • 2014: 6 May
  • 2015: 25 May
  • 2016: 14 May

 

Buddha's Birthday

 

Salary in China

An average worker in China costs more than the average worker in any other emerging Asian economy, except Malaysia and Thailand, when considered in terms of combined salary and welfare payments. Blue collar wages in major cities are all on the rise.

Salaries for skilled management positions are approaching or equal to that of developed country wages for similar positions. Beijing tops the list of employees' salary with an average monthly pay of 4,672 yuan (S$916) among the 23 provinces and cities. Shanghai follows with an average monthly salary of 4,331 yuan and Gansu province is at the bottom of the list with a monthly average wage of 2,742 yuan.

The average annual salary of urban non-private employees reached 42,452 yuan in 2011, 14.3 per cent more than the average salary of 37,147 yuan in 2010. The actual growth rate is 8.5 per cent if inflation is deducted.

 However, it is expected that in the next five years China will be able to put in place mechanisms in order to double the country’s minimum wage by 2015. If that happens it will raise the Chinese figure to $3,000 plus welfare of 50 percent, assuming the latter payments remain the same. This provides a total minimum salary overhead of $4,500. In reality, most salaries will be far higher. If the assumed growth and increase takes place then it will make China’s average labor cost second only to Malaysia and significantly more expensive than any other Asian country.

 

2011 Average Salary in China by Region

Region

Monthly Salary (RMB)

Annual Salary (RMB)

Growth Rate (%)

Beijing

4,672

56,061

11.2

Shanghai

4,331

51,968

11.1

Zhejiang

3,888

46,660

12.4

Jiangsu

3,832

45,987

13.5

Guangdong

3,763

45,152

6.3

Ningxia

3,715

44,574

13.9

Qinghai

3,541

42,493

14.6

Tianjin

3,520

42,240

12.5

Anhui

3,387

40,640

11.9

Chongqing

3,337

40,042

7.6

Shanxi

3,325

39,903

12.97

Shaanxi

3,254

39,043

7.7

Fujian

3,249

38,989

19.4

Sichuan

3,160

37,942

14.5

Shandong

3,061

36,737

8.9

Hainan

3,060

36,716

18.3

Hebei

3,014

36,166

6.3

Hunan

2,960

35,520

16.5

Yunnan

2,949

35,387

17.0

Jilin

2,850

34,197

16.3

Guangxi

2,848

34,178

1.54

Jiangxi

2,838

34,055

17.1

Gansu

2,742

32,906

10.6

 

The chart above illustrates the 2011 average annual and monthly salaries of employees in 23 different provinces and provincial cities in China. According to the chart, employees in Beijing received the highest average salary at 4,672 RMB per month, followed closely by Shanghai, with 4,331 RMB per month.  Zhejiang employees came in third with an average salary of 3,888 RMB per month. While the inclusion of these three cities at the top of the 2011 list isn't in itself much of a surprise, it is quite amusing that China's political capital has outshined its financial capital in terms of average employee salary. On the other hand are the unfortunate employees in Gansu, Jiangxi and Guangxi provinces who are earning substantially less per month (2,742 RMB, 2,838 RMB and 2,848 RMB respectively).

It should be noted that the numbers captured on this chart reflects the average employee salary from both public work units and private businesses in Shanghai, Beijing, Sichuan and Hebei, while only employees from public work units are included in the other 19 provinces.

Higher wages can be considered as a double-edged sword for companies doing business in China. On one hand, they raise costs; on the other, they help to increase consumer demand.  Either way, they aren’t poised to slow anytime soon.

An average annual 14% rise in wages in the country during the past decade is likely to “maintain the same pace for the next 5-10 years. This means that the average labor costs paid by businesses in China could rise three or four times in the next decade. Wages will likely to continue upward in part because of government efforts to boost living standards for low-income families, and strong overall economic growth in China.

 Companies trying to cope with rising wages may find less relief than they imagine by moving away from pricey big cities such as Shanghai because wages are heading up nationwide.  Yet moving inland can help a company get closer to domestic market, and take advantage of government investment incentives.

If the prospect of higher wages in local currency isn’t challenging enough, companies may face another source of pressure in the years ahead:  the rise in China’s currency. The Renminbi is expected to appreciate annually by about 3% or above in the coming years.

 

Customs Duties

Gifts

You must declare all gifts to the Canada Border Services Agency. Gifts worth CDN $60 or less each may be brought into Canada duty-free and tax-free, but must be declared. For gifts worth more than CDN $60, you may have to pay duties and taxes on the excess amount. Tobacco and alcohol cannot be imported as gifts.

Wedding gifts

If you got married within three months of coming to Canada or if you plan to marry no later than three months after arriving in the country, you can bring in your wedding gifts free of duty and taxes. However, you must have owned and possessed the gifts before you arrived in Canada. In this instance, the requirement to have used the goods does not apply. These same conditions apply to household goods you bring in as part of a bride's trousseau.

Ownership, possession and use requirements

To import goods duty- and tax-free, Settlers must have owned, possessed and used the goods prior to their arrival in Canada and Former Residents must have owned, possessed and used the goods for at least six months before returning to resume residency.

It is important that you meet these three requirements. For example, if you owned and possessed the goods without using them, the goods will be subjected to duty and taxes. Please note that leased goods are subject to duty and taxes because the Canada Border Services Agency does not consider that you own them. If you have bills of sale and registration documents, they can help you prove that you meet these requirements.

 

Exceptions to ownership, possession and use requirements

If you are a former resident then the six-month stipulation will be waived if you have been absent from Canada for five years or more. Therefore, you only need to have owned, possessed and used your personal and household effects/items for a period of time before you return to Canada.

 

Replacement goods

Replacement goods imported by Former Residents are also exempt from the six-month requirement. However, they must have owned, possessed and used the goods abroad before returning to Canada to resume residency. To qualify for the exemption, the goods must be replacements for goods that would have met the six-month ownership, possession and use requirements, except for the fact that they were lost or destroyed as a result of a fire, a theft, an accident or due to other unforeseen circumstances.

 

In addition, replacement goods must be of a similar class and about the same value as the goods they are replacing. You will need to show proof in order to support your claim. If you intend to claim replacement goods and to ensure that the goods qualify, you should call the agency responsible for requirements.

Declaring your goods

When you arrive, even if you have no goods with you at the time, you must give your list of goods to the border services officer at your first point of arrival in Canada. Based on the list of goods you submit, the officer will complete a Form B4, Personal Effects Accounting Document, assign a file number to it and give you a copy of the completed form as a receipt. You will need to present your copy of this form to claim free importation of your unaccompanied goods when they arrive. Goods to follow may be subject to import restrictions before you can import them.

To facilitate the clearance process, you can complete Form B4, in advance before your arrival at the first port of entry in Canada. You can obtain a copy of the form on the Canada Border Services Agency’s Web site at http://www.cbsa.gc.ca/

 

Disposing of goods you imported duty- and tax-free

If you import goods duty- and tax-free into Canada and if you sell or give the goods away within the first year of importing them into Canada, you will have to pay any applicable duty and taxes immediately. If you divert the goods for commercial use, the same rule applies.

 

Sponsoring your spouse

Spousal Sponsorship

Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada can sponsor a spouse and dependent children to come and live with him / her if they are outside Canada. Therefore Canadians are free to get a marriage visa to marry their Chinese spouses and sponsor their application for marriage immigration to Canada provided that they meet all the requirements.If you were married outside Canada, the marriage must be valid under the law of the country where it took place and under Canadian law.  A marriage performed in an embassy or consulate must comply with the law of the country where it took place, not the country of nationality of the embassy or consulate.

 

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