Travel in China

Chinese Culture

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What to see in China Apart from popular destinations such as Beijing, there are many other places worth seeing: Xi'an, Shanghai, Guilin, Lijiang, Jiuzhaigou, Yellow Mountain, ...


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Chinese Culture What's most popular religion in China? What are the 12 animals? Chinese dynasties? What do people eat in China? ...

Traditionally, the Chinese (and also most eastern asian countries) use the Chinese (lunar) calender. Although officially China uses western calender, major holidays, such as Spring Festival, Mid-autumn (moon) Festival, still follow the Chinese calender.

In China, people assocaite years with animals, the so called Chinese animal years, animal signs (shengxiao) or zodiac. There are 12 animals rotating every 12 years: rat (mouse), ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep (ram or goat), monkey, rooster, dog, and pig (boar).

The legend says that the order of the zodiac was determined through a race. The rat, who is clear enough to offer the ox the direction and standed on the ox's head and jumped ahead of him when they reached the finish line. So the rat becomes the first animal in the Zodiac.

Another legend says that the rat was given the task of inviting the animals to report to the Jade Emperor for a banquet to be selected for the zodiac signs. The cat and rat were good friends, but the rat tricked him into believing that the banquet was the next day. When the cat found out, he already missed the banquet. And that why the cat has been chasing the rat for thousands of year -- well, until recent years.

Each animal has its own attributes: good or bad.

Rat

1900, 1912, 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020

Charismatic, Sociable, Intelligent, Affable, Quick-Witted, Popular

Exploitive, Calculative, Secretive, Greedy, Acquisitive, Devious

Ox

1901, 1913, 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021

Honest, Loyal, Popular, Sincere, Steadfast, Reliable

Stubborn, Impatient, Inflexible, Narrow-Minded, Sulking

Tiger

1902, 1914, 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, 2022

Enthusiastic, Optimistic, Courageous, Bold, Sociable, Energetic

Volatile, Impulsive, Hot-headed, Restless, Disobedient, Vain, Stubborn

Rabbit

1903, 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023

Astute, Thoughtful, Refined, Docile, Wise

Cunning, Snobbish, Possessive, Fussy, Obsessive

Dragon

1904, 1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012, 2024

Resourceful, Self-Assured, Adaptable, Original, Valiant, Enthusiastic

Arrogant, Hot-headed, Unpredictable, Critical, Irritable, Discourteous

Snake

1905, 1917, 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013, 2025

Insightful, Shrewd, Discreet, Wise, Compassionate, Subtle

Proud, Manipulative, Malicious, Possessive, Vain, Sluggish

Horse

1906, 1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014, 2026

Friendly, Vivacious, Enduring, Witty, Cheerful, Refined, Independent

Selfish, Reckless, Vain, Impatient, Volatile

Sheep

1907, 1919, 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015, 2027

Intelligent, Artistic, Gentle, Kind, Cultured, Sensitive

Fussy, Insecure, Ingratiative, Self-Indulgent, Dependent

Monkey

1908, 1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016, 2028

Persuasive, Resourceful, Good-Humoured, Ingenious, Versatile, Imaginative

Superficial, Restless, Impudent, Sly, Mischievousness, Untruthful

Rooster

1909, 1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017, 2029

Passionate, Resilient, Patriotic, Industrious, Courageous, Protective

Conceited, Blunt, Rude, Bossy, Aggressive, Impatient

Dog

1910, 1922, 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, 2030

Devoted, Resilient, Unselfish, Honest, Resourceful, Reliable

Nosy, Cynical, Cantakerous, Pessimistic, Anxious, Introverted

Pig

1911, 1923, 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007, 2019, 2031

Sincere, Diligent, Genuine, Obliging, Generous, Friendly

Materialistic, Pigheaded, Gullible, Naive, Lazy, Superficial

The Chinese New Year (Spring Festival) usually starts at the end of January or in Feburary in western calender, but more and more people are disregarding the difference.

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