Interesting Facts for Kids
Here are some interesting China Facts which were chosen and researched by kids especially for kids.
China Facts for Kids
- Population: more than 1.4 billion people live in China (2019). The majority of the people live in cities and towns.
- Capital: Beijing with 21.7 million inhabitants is not only China's capital city but also the second biggest city after Shanghai.
- Name: People's Republic of China (PRC)
- Government: Republic, communist state
- Languages: Mandarin or Standard Chinese (official language), while Cantonese (Yue) and Shanghainese (Wu) are among other most spoken languages
- Literacy: More than 96% can read and write.
- Religion: No main religion, as religious memberships are not supported by the government. Main religions are Buddhist (18%), Christian 5%, Muslim 1.8%, Taoist, Hindu and Folk Religions (22%)
- Currency: 1 Renmimbi (Yuan) equals 100 Jiao
- Flag colors: red with five golden stars
- National day: 1 October - in 1949 the People's Republic of China was formed.
- National symbols: dragon and giant panda
- National colours: red and yellow
- History: For many centuries, China has been one of the most advanced civilisations accomplishing major scientific and artistic treasures. The Xia and Shang dynasties are considered as the oldest Chinese civilisations. Over the centuries many emporors ruled the country, the last emperor of China, the last ruler of the Qing dynasty, was Pu Yi who abdicted in 1912. In the 20th century the world was shaken by bloody wars and from 1937-1945 Japan occupied large industrial areas in China and took over the Chinese government. Since 1949 the Communist Party of China rules the country. The current president of the People's Republic of China is Xi Jinping.
Where is China? - China Map
China is located in the eastern parts of Asia and is the largest country that is entirely situated in Asia.
China borders 14 countries. The countries bordering China are: Russia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Bhutan, Nepal, Myanmar (formerly called Burma), Laos, Vietnam and North Korea (you will find them on the map below).
Map of China
China has 23 provinces including the island of Taiwan. Taiwan which has its own currency and government and is officially also called "Republic of China" is seen as a rebel province by China and is not recognised as a sovereign state by the UN. There are also two SARs, which are special administrative regions, that have some autonomy: Hong Kong and Macau in southern China.
China for Kids: China Geography
China is the fourth largest country in the world after Russia, Canada and the USA.
Although China is so large, there is only one timezone!
Most people in China live in the eastern parts of the country, the western parts are only sparsely populated.
The Pacific Ocean forms the natural border in the east and southeast and southwest of the country. In the west, there are the Himalayas, which is the highest mountain range in the world.
Most of the western parts of the country lie on the Tibetan mountainous plateau. In fact, mountains make up the majority of the landscape, dominating over 70% of the landmass.
Mountains in Sichuan
The huge country has many different climate zones ranging from tropic zones to arctic zones.
In the north, there is the vast Gobi Desert. Deserts make up about 20% of the country.
Gobi Desert and Dunhuang Crescent Moon Spring in Gansu
China Facts | China Superlatives
- China is the most populous country in the world as it is home to almost one fifth of the world population.
- The highest mountain on the border with China is the Mount Everest, the world's highest mountains, with 8,848 metres (29,000ft).
- The longest river in China is the Yangtze River with over 6,300km (3,914miles) in length. This is also Asia's longest river.
- China has the world's longest sea-crossing bridge. The Hongkong to Zhuhai-Macao bridge was opened to traffic in October 2018.
- The Gobi Desert which stretches over China and Mongolia is the largest desert in Asia.
Attractions for Kids
China's Great Wall
- Great Wall of China: Walk along parts of the over 8,850km/5,500 miles long Great Wall which once was the border of the old Chinese empire. The wall stretches across China from the Korean border into the Gobi desert. This is the longest wall in the world and newer archeological findings report that the entire defence works including the Great Wall and all its branches stretches over 21,000km/13,000 miles! Did you know, that the name in ancient Chinese actually meant 'The 10,000-Mile Long Wall' or 'Incredibly Long Wall'?
- Terracotta Warriors: See the over 5000 sculptures of life-size soldiers, made from terracotta, in Xian. The sculptures which are on one of the world's most famous archeological sites, are older than 2,000 years.
- Forbidden City in Beijing: The Forbidden City houses the Palace museum with the Chinese Imperial Palace and the Summer Palace, that were still used until 1911.
- Potala Palace in Lhasa/Tibet: This is where every Dalai Lama has held his official residence until the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1950
- Wolong Giant Panda Nature Reserve near Chengdu: See the pandas in their natural habitat and visit the breeding and research centre to learn more about the endangered pandas.
Guilin Yangshuo River
- Guilin: The rough limestone karst mountains along the Li River between Guilin and Yangshuo are very picturesque. People enjoy rafting on river.
- 'The Bund' in Shanghai: Shanghai is the largest and most populated Chinese city with the busiest port in the world. The Bund is the megacity's main shopping and business district.
- Hong Kong: Visit Victoria Harbour. Enjoy the amazing views of the skyscrapers along the shoreline or get to the top of Victoria Peak and have a bird's eye view of the city and the harbour.
Hong Kong skyline - View over Victoria Harbour
Some China Facts about Chinese People
Almost one in five people on our earth live in China, while the country is smaller than the USA. The Chinese government lifted the one-child policy in 2016, now Chinese parents are allowed to have two children.
Many Chinese live in the 'megacities' of the country. Megacities are cities with more than 10 million inhabitants. In 2018, of the 33 megacities in the world, six were located in China.
Megacity of Guangzhou - home to 25 million people
In rural areas the living standard is still very poor and many people live there live in huts or along the rivers in stilt houses.
Chinese Opera Singer
The Chinese love music and opera plays, although the voices of the Chinese opera singers may sound strange to our ears.
Chinese New Year, also called the Lunar New Year, is the biggest celebration on the Chinese calendar. The Chinese calendar start at the end of January/early February each year and every year another animal sign symbolises the strength and the weaknesses. There are 12 zodiac/animal signs and thus every 12 years the animals signs start over again. 2018 is the year of the pig.
Children look very much forward to the Chinese New Year celebrations which are two weeks long celebrations over the new year when they get gifts, often money wrapped in red envelopes or red packets, from family and friends. Popular 'Lion Dances' also take place during this time. The dragon is the most celebrated symbol of prosperity and strength.
Chinese Lion Dance - image by Windmoon
Which zodiac sign are you? Read more about the Chinese New Year celebrations here.
Although Mandarin Chinese is the official language, in many regions other languages are spoken such as Cantonese, Shanghainese, Hainanese or Mongolian.
Ni Hao - Hello in Chinese Writing
The Chinese writing is done from top to bottom in little symbols or signs, called 'characters' of which an adult usually knows about 8,000 different characters. With 13 years most Chinese children can read and write 3,000 characters.
Some Chinese words good to know:
Ni hao! means Hello!
Xie Xie means Thank You
Gong Xi Fa Cai! means Happy Chinese New Year!
China Facts: Chinese Food
The traditional diet in China contains low amounts of protein such as meats or dairy products. Many Chinese dishes are vegetable and soya based. Chinese often eat/drink soup for breakfast and rice based dishes are eaten throughout the day.
Soy, vegetable and rice products are the most common ingrediences in Chinese dishes. Chinese mainly eat with chopsticks and drink their soups instead of eating them with a spoon as we do. Here is some typical Chinese food:
- Springrolls: The fried rice paper rolls are surely the most famous food export
- Chow Mein: stir-fried egg noodles with chicken strips
- Tofu: soy bean curd used in many dishes
- Sweet and sour pork: fried cubed pork and fried vegetables in a sweet and sour sauce often made with capsicum peppers and pineapple
- Peking Duck: duck roast with crispy thin skin, often served with plum sauce
- Dim Sum: Steamed dumplings filled with minced meat or vegetables
Chinese Dim Sum
China Facts: China Animals
Young Giant Panda
There are many endangered animal species living in China. Among them are the Giant Panda, the South Chinese Tiger and the Chinese Alligator.
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And enjoy learning more great China Facts soon:-)
Picture credits in main text: own or shutterstock.com
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