Take a look at these 8 weird and wonderful facts about the country of China and Chinese culture.

  1. Over 30 million people still live in caves in China - that’ll save on the electricity bill.
  2. You may think the UK is the home of football, but it is said that it was actually invented in Linzi, the capital of the ancient Chinese state of Qi.
  3. 80 billion pairs of chopsticks are produced annually.
  4. We have Emperor Tang of Shang to thank for the invention of ice-cream! In China, its origins date back as far as 200 B.C., the emperor instructed 94 ice men to make a dish consisting of buffalo milk, flour and camphor in the snow.
    Emperor Tang of Shang

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Year of the Rooster

This year, Chinese New Year falls on January 28th. Unlike the traditional calendar, the New Year (or Lunar New Year/ Spring Festival) is marked by the lunisolar Chinese calendar.

On Chinese New Year, people expect to see amazing lantern parades, fireworks and dances. But what you probably haven’t noticed, is that you’ll see an unusual amount of red on New Year’s eve.

Why is this? In times gone by, there was a Chinese legend involving a mythical beast called the "Year", who'd come out on New Year's Eve to harm adults, children and their animals. It was discovered that the "Year" was afraid of fire and the colour red, which is why you'll still see a huge display of red decorations and bright fireworks at any New Year’s Eve celebration.

Nowadays, red symbolises luck and positivity – a sharp turn around from times past! Traditionally, during the Chinese New Year, grandparents, parents and neighbours will gift red envelopes containing money to the younger generation. This giving of envelopes also takes place on birthdays and weddings – so in essence, if you’re younger this tradition is fantastic, but as you get older, it’s going to get expensive for you!

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Noodle Soup

As the days get shorter and the weather gets chillier, the need for warm, comforting food is even higher than usual! But don’t worry, there’s no need to despair, we have a diverse selection of noodle soups on Chung Ying Central’s Winter Lunch menu, to fill your belly and warm your bones!

To discuss the history of noodle soups, we’ll need to get into our time machine and travel back all the way to the third century, when the first mention of noodle soups was recorded in the Chinese dictionary. These noodles were very different to our modern day favourites, they were usually made from little pieces of bread dough and thrown into boiling water to cook. Here at Chung Ying, we like to think we’re a little bit more refined than that.

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10 Interesting Facts about Giant Pandas

Earlier this year, we were thrilled to hear that Giant Pandas had been moved off the endangered species list, due to intensified conservation efforts. The total population is now estimated at 1,864, which has moved them from endangered to vulnerable.

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Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival 2016

You may have heard about our Mid-Autumn Celebrations coming up in September (and even bought a ticket) but do you know why we celebrate the occasion?

On the 15th of the lunar calendar, each month, the moon is at its roundest and brightest, symbolizing togetherness and reunion in Chinese culture. Families get together to express their familial love by eating dinner together, appreciating the moon, eating mooncakes, etc. The harvest moon is traditionally believed to be the brightest of the year.

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You may have visited our little corner of China on Colmore Row in Birmingham but here’s our top 6 beautiful places in China that will have you Googling Chinese Visas…

Zhangye’s Danxia Landscape – Rainbow Mountains

Zhangye’s Danxia Landscape – Rainbow Mountains

A photographers dream, the rainbow mountains are situated in the remote Northwest of China.

The mountains are several hundred metres high and their red and yellow autumnal hues are best viewed (and photographed) during sunrise and sunset. Visit in the Summer months as Winters in China’s Northwest can be unforgiving.

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Going out for a meal with family and friends is a time to relax, socialise and enjoy good food. Chung Ying plays host to these memorable meals everyday of the week, experiencing new people trying new food and spending quality time together.

A meal out should never be compromised by stress, and Chung Ying also plays host to some of the most embarrassing chopstick mishaps this side of the western hemisphere.

Reaching for the chopsticks is a brave move for some, putting a lot of pressure on yourself to confidently perform without spending more then 5 minutes desperately trying to clasp a spring roll.

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