on our blog: China's cities so massive they're intimidating

China’s cities are so large and massively developing that it’s sometimes frightening, and as hard as ever to travel independently.  There’s scarcely a word or destination written in pinyin (Romanized Chinese)—much less English—in the typical Chinese bus or train station, nor counter help equipped to deal with it verbally, something common in most of the world these days, from Mongolia to Madagascar, Botswana to Berlin.  Hotel staff are a little better—but not much.  So a little Chinese language is almost indispensable to independent travel in China, something which many people would consider impossible.   It’s not, of course, but many people probably won’t believe that....

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