By Greg Hugh        

Some might consider Chinese tourism to be the biggest phenomenon to hit the global travel industry since the invention of commercial flight.  The UN World Tourism Organization estimated that by 2015, 100 million Chinese will pack their bags to travel abroad.  In 2012, Chinese overtook Americans and Germans as the world’s top international tourism spenders, with 83 million spending a record US$102 billion on international tourism.

This remarkable growth — largely due to relaxed government restrictions on foreign travel and the rise of a Chinese middle class with disposable income — has forced the international travel industry, from hotels to restaurants to shopping centers, to adapt to the influx of Chinese tourists.  This phenomenal growth unfortunately has resulted in controversy as to how Chinese tourist behave as they travel the world, and prompted Beijing in 2013 to issue a handy 64-page rulebook aimed at curbing the unruly behavior of Chinese tourists abroad that has resulted in an “uncivilized” stereotype.

Hiking through a Chinese landscape paintingWeb Travel YelMtn MtnsClouds r72

By Linda Mealey-Lohmann, vice president, US-China Peoples Friendship Association of Minnesota

It was a beautiful day (in September 2013) to embark on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Yellow Mountain (Huangshan 黄山), a UNESCO world heritage site in Anhui Province, China, west of Shanghai.  We took the tram from the bottom of the mountain to nearly its top, where we were told we would have to hike the rest of the way to our hotel.  So, with our overnight bags slung across our shoulders, we hiked along a well-defined path while taking in the breath-taking beauty of the jutting granite peaks and the ancient Huangshan Pines.  The sky was blue and we could see for miles.  It was a perfect day for this US-China Peoples Friendship Association tour group of eight travelers who had traveled from all over the U.S. to come together at this spot.

By Zhang Xueying, China Today staff reporter

Traditional Resorts

Of the 10 cities, Sanya, Haikou and Qinhuangdao are traditional destinations for millions of urbanites seeking to escape the summer heat of inland cities.

Sanya and Haikou on China's southernmost island province of Hainan are often compared to Hawaii, given a tropical climate and landscape that make them unlike any other Chinese seaside locale. Apart from marine sightseeing and recreational activities, golfing has boomed in recent years at both summer resorts. Sanya's Yalong Bay Golf Club, in particular, has distinguished itself by hosting a number of international professional tournaments, leading to its selection by the American golf magazine, Golf Digest, as one of the top 10 greens in China.

By James Yang, The Executive Navigator Summer Program participant

As humans first appeared on the Earth, they appeared to be the same, farming strenuously to
support their families. However, with the development of the world, the destinies of different
people came to be totally different. Some people were forced to leave their homes for an
unknown place. They had to give up their present lives, such as the lost boys from Sudan. Some
people were good at writing so they wrote famous books with popular characters. For example,
the boy Christopher was created by British writer Mark Haddon in his 2003 novel The Curious
Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Unlike them, l am only an ordinary person in this modern
world, and not known by so many people. However, we all have experienced many obstacles,
which we had never expected. The most important thing is that our adverse destinies are behind
us and we now have the power and strength to lead in our future calling.

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By Jiao Feng, China Today Staff Writer

The prosperity of Shanghai and her surrounding cities used to depend heavily on a single waterway – the Grand Canal. With Beijing and Hangzhou at its ends, the canal was the main route between the South and North of China till the introduction of the railway. Productions of the fertile southeast, like tea, silk and porcelain, were shipped to the North non-stop through this canal.

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