Before I got my assignment to work in Ningbo, I had no idea that this city even exists. That is interesting because it has a population of over ~7 Million people and one of the busiest harbors in the worlds. This is I guess just another proof that we know so little about the world.
Ningbo is not a big touristic attraction. For that reason many foreigners will not know this city. Nevertheless, it has some nice places to visit like the Tianyi Ge with the oldest library in China, the Baoguo Temple and the King Ashoka Temple.
For me Ningbo was more a city in China to learn more about the country itself. Here some things that I learned:
- forget English when outside of Beijing or Shanghai – you need a translator
- even that English is taught in school not many people speak it
- never forget your hotel card with the Chinese address, otherwise no taxi driver will ever get you back
- Chinese breakfast is like lunch or diner – rice, noddles, meat, etc.
- Thai Chi in the morning is a big thing
- first ask in restaurants if they have English menu or a menu with pictures
- karaoke is the party time in China
- Justin Bieber is really popular in China
- keeping distance is not existing due to the population, if it is crowded you have many close friends
- being polite is Japanese not Chinese
- Even that there are many rules, this does not mean they people follow them e.g no smoking in restaurants, hotels, etc.
- The months of June and July can be very hot (42 degree) and rainy
- do not aspect people to take care of you
- is there really a line some somewhere or only a massive crowd (ticket switch, bar, etc)
- local music and dance performances can be found in many random places and a re usually for free – take some time and enjoy