While not as famous as the mega Chinese cities of Shanghai or Beijing, Fuzhou is a hidden gem on the Minjiang river. Lush and green, with warm weather most of the year, it is certain to charm you with its mix of East and West. Famous for its historical architecture, large parks and a vibrant art scene, Fuzhou is where our largest community of international teachers reside.
Perhaps surprisingly for most people, Fuzhou has roughly the same population as Hong Kong, the perfect destination to get a feel for real China and learn Mandarin, but still live in a metropolitan city! As a very affordable city, you can experience the delicious local and Western cuisine with restaurants on every corner, and travel far and wide with Fuzhou’s international airport or two major railway stations linking the rest of China with hi speed trains.
Fuzhou, pronounced Foo-Jo, has a history dating back over 2,200 years. It sits in a basin between groups of mountain ranges; Gushan Mountain on the East, Qishan Mountain on the West, Wuhushan Mountain on the South and Lianhuafeng Mountain on the North. Plenty of hiking opportunities! It is also famous for the cleanest air in China, thanks in part to the electric bikes that are common throughout the city. Fuzhou and Fujian Province are known for their tea culture, and there is no where better to experience vast tea plantations that in the neighbouring Wuyishan scenic area.
FOR A TASTE OF WESTERN COMFORT!
A modern metropolis within the Pearl River Delta, Shenzhen is a young, vibrant city bordering Hong Kong. Just over thirty years ago, it was a small fishing village called Bao’an County. Fast forward today and it is one of the most developed and one of the wealthiest cities of China.
One of the technological capitals of the world, it is also a huge, coastal city with the majority of its population under 30. Shenzhen offers expats a taste of modern China with plenty of Western amenities. A beautiful city skyline, bustling social and music scene, and the opportunity to hop on the short subway over to Hong Kong, Shenzhen offers expats an exciting lifestyle with excellent travel networks and the chance to learn Cantonese as well as Mandarin.
FOR A QUIETER PACE OF LIFE SURROUNDED BY NATURE!
South East of Fuzhou is the coastal district of Changle. Still within Fujian district, Changle is ideal for all jet setters as its location is only a 15/20 minute drive to the major international airport of northern Fujian, the very same one used from those in Fuzhou. This means those weekend getaways are so easy. Located very close to some beautiful black & white sand beaches, particularly famed for its surfers, and surrounded on all sides by lush green mountains, Changle is a city for those that love the outdoors. It is also a perfect location for those wishing to immerse themselves into Chinese culture and truly learn the language. And with the larger city of Fuzhou just a 45 minute drive away, you have everything you need on your doorstep!
FOR THE PERFECT MIX OF EAST & WEST!
A beautiful coastal city on the Taiwan Strait, Xiamen is a city of 3.5 million people, and is a popular university city. It’s main tourist attraction is the UNESCO World Heritage site Gulangyu Island. Apart from Shanghai, this tiny island is the only other place on Chinese soil to have had international settlement, and today you can see the old colonial architecture on the car-free island.
With palm tree lined streets, a coastal breeze in the summer heat, and, like Fuzhou and Changle, the low levels of pollution, Xiamen is a very popular destination for expats and Chinese alike. Xiamen has some excellent beaches, and with Taiwan just a ferry ride across the Taiwan strait, an international airport and high speed railway lines, it’s a great please to explore China and beyond.