25 Interesting Facts about China

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Are you looking for facts about China? Then you’ve come to the right place! Here are 25 Interesting China Facts, and further down you can also read some more general facts about China that might be good to know!

To make this even more fun, I want to challenge you. How many of these China facts did you already know before reading this? Share your result in the comment section! Or why not challenge some Chinese friends? 

1. Football (soccer) was invented here

2.200 years ago, the game that later turned into football (soccer) was invented in China.

The world’s first soccer ball was a leather ball filled with feathers and hair, and the game was called ‘Tsu’ Chu,’ which literally means ‘kicking ball.’

chinese facts

2. China is the world’s most populous country

With more than 1.4 billion people, China holds the world record for having the largest population on Earth. India is not far behind though with 1.3 billion people, and they’re estimated to take over the 1 place in a few years.

But to this date, China can pride themselves on having the largest population in the world!

China facts

#2 China facts – Photo: TonyV3112 / Shutterstock.com

3. The Sunrise in parts of China can be as late as 10 AM

Despite being a wide and large country, China only has one time zone – Standard Chinese time. This means that in the West of China, the sunrise can be as late as 10 AM!

This means that when it’s 6 o’clock in the nation’s capital, it’s 6 o’clock almost 3,000 miles further west, in Kashgar.

READ MORE:  Top Things To Do In Beijing

4. The Elderly Rights Law

If you have parents that are over 60 years old, it’s illegal to not visit them regularly. This is definitely one of the most interesting China facts, since, in many other countries, the elders are being forgotten or put into rest-homes.

Elderly rights law in china

Photo: Shutterstock

5. China has the world’s largest economy

In 2014, experts claimed that the Chinese economy has become the largest economy in the world. It’s the biggest exporter and is considered the largest economy in the world when it comes to purchasing power parity.

However, in nominal GDP, it’s the second largest economy.

6. The Chinese New Year celebration lasts for 15 days

First of all, the New Year in China and the European or American New Year is not being celebrated on the same date. The first day of the year falls on the new moon between January 21 and February 20, so it differs from year to year.

Secondly, this celebration is ongoing for 15 days instead of just 1 that westerners celebrate the new year.

Definitely one of the many interesting facts about China!

Chinese New year decorations

Photo: testing / Shutterstock.com

7. Fortune cookies are not a traditional Chinese custom

Did you know that fortune cookies actually were invented in San Fransisco? Today more than 3 billion fortune cookies are made each year, but it’s not a traditional Chinese custom, even if many westerners think otherwise.

8. China has the world’s largest standing army

Did you think that the United States has the largest army in the world? Guess again. The mighty superpower country China has 2,183,000 personnel they can send to war if they have to.

That’s almost 1 million more than what the U.S Army has in active duty.

modern facts about china

Photo: Hung Chung Chih / Shutterstock.com

9. In 2020, it’s estimated to be 30-40 million more Chinese men than women

This is a big problem that China is facing due to the one-child policy that has been standard for the last decades. Since they only can have one child per family, it has led to the fact that a lot of parents want a son and not a daughter.

China is still very traditional as a country, and because of parents only wanting a son, it has led to the problem that about 30-40 million men can’t find a Chinese wife to marry because they’re already taken.

10. China’s railway lines are so extensive and long that they could loop around Earth twice

China is the 4th largest country by area in the world, but the railways are widely expanded throughout the country. In fact, the Chinese railway is so extensive that it could loop around the Earth, not once, but TWICE!

chinese railway

Photo: Shutterstock

11. It’s mandatory for cosmetic products to be tested on animals

This might not be one of the most exciting facts about China, but it’s interesting because this is totally prohibited and banned in Europe. In 2018, there’s no need to perform a test on animals, because it can be both cheaper and more effective to do it on “fake skin” and other techniques.

READ MORE:  Top Things To Do In Beijing

But, still, every cosmetic product that’s on the Chinese market has to go through tests on animals. I really hope China will change this, as I see China as a very progressive country in many ways, and they can become the front leader by being innovative and compassioned.

12. A new skyscraper is built every five days

No country on Earth is growing as fast as China. The cities are being transformed fast, and on average, there is a new skyscraper somewhere in the country every 5 days.

In a period of a year (365 days), China gets at least 73 new skyscrapers!

skyscraper in china

#12 Facts about China – Photo: Shutterstock

13. Facebook has been banned in China since 2009

But there are still at least 95 million Chinese users who get by the block via various VPN services. With that said, most people use other social media channels such as Baidu, WeChat and Sina Weibo.

They even have their own version of YouTube called Youku Tudou.

14. Wang, Li, and Zhan are the most common surnames

They make up about 21% of the total population, which means that one in every five people will have Wang, Li or Zhan as their surname, which is actually referred to as the first name in China.

15. One in every five people in the world is Chinese

If you didn’t think learning Chinese was important, then you might need to re-think that thought. About 1 in 5 people worldwide are Chinese, which in a percentage equal to 20% of the total population in the world.

While most of them reside within the People’s Republic of China, it theoretically means that if you meet 5 people, at least one of them will be Chinese.

chinese girl

Photo: Shutterstock

5 x Fun Facts about China

  • More than 35 million people still live in caves
  • There’s a bridge between mainland China and Macau, where cars switch from left to right-hand drive and vice versa
  • Spitting, yawning, grunting and burping are normal behaviors when you eat in China
  • Ice Cream wasn’t invented in Italy, it was invented in China 4000 years ago
  • Many Chinese emperors considered themselves to be descendants of dragons
READ MORE:  Top Things To Do In Hong Kong as a tourist

5 x China Facts for Kids

  • Table Tennis is considered the national sport
  • Half of the world’s pigs live in China
  • Paper money was invented here
  • All of China uses the same time zone despite the country’s size
  • The national animal is the Giant Panda
national animal of china

Facts about China for Kids – Photo: Shutterstock

Random facts about China and the Chinese people

  1. 100 million people in China live on less than US$1 per day
  2. China is the world’s biggest exporter
  3. More than 45 billion chopsticks are being used per year
  4. A soup that’s made from bird saliva is considered a delicacy – Bird’s nest soup
  5. The Chinese language is the oldest language still in use in writing in the world
  6. About four million cats are eaten every year in China as a delicacy
  7. The Chinese consider number 8 as lucky. The reason for this is because it sounds similar to the Chinese word for “prosperity”
  8. One-third of the population can’t speak Mandarin, which is the country’s official language
  9. The color of red is a sign of happiness, and that’s why it’s so frequently used in festival decorations
  10. China is the largest producer of tomatoes
birds nest soup

Bird’s nest soup – Photo: Shutterstock

General Facts about China

Below are some general info such as total population, land area, biggest lake, highest mountain and other general facts about China that might be interesting to know.

  • Total Population: 1,415,045,928
  • Capital: Beijing
  • Life expectancy: 75.7 Years
  • Highest Mountain: Mount Everest
  • Land area: 9,596,961 km2 (3,705,407 square miles)
  • Largest Lake: Qinghai Lake
  • National Day: 1 October
  • Government: Unitary one-party socialist republic
  • Party General Secretary and President: Xi Jinping
  • Currency: Renminbi (CNY) – (¥)
  • Official language: Standard Chinese
  • Official script language: Simplified Chinese
  • Religion: No official religion
  • Official Website: www.gov.cn
  • Member of Nato: No
  • National songYìyǒngjūn Jìnxíngqǔ – “March of the Volunteers”
  • Time zone: China Standard Time (UTC+8)
  • Country Number/Prefix: +86
  • Country Code: CN

The Biggest Cities in China

If you’re looking for facts about China, it might also be interesting to know which are the biggest cities. Here’s a list of the top 10 biggest Italian cities ranked after population.

GuangzhouTianjin
ShanghaiShenzhen
ChongqingChengdu
BeijingDongguan
HangzhouShenyang

The Chinese Flag

China flag

Map of China

Map of China

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How many of these China Facts did you know beforehand? Share your result in the comment section below!

September 6th, 2018|

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Swedish Nomad

Hello! I’m Alex Waltner — A Swedish Travel Blogger & Photographer.

My vision with this blog is to inspire people to travel more and better by sharing useful travel guides and tips from my adventures around the world.

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