Entertainment in China: A Quick Guide

Entertainment in China is vast and interesting depending on where you are located and what your particular interests may be. The place is so huge that there should really be something for everyone.

Terracotta Warriors

Terracotta Warriors by John Kellenberger

Whilst opening this document to write a post breaming with tips in the classroom I soon found my internet blinking off and on and my VPN trying to connect with no success.

What happens when you come home from classes, tired and feeling a bit introverted, grab your dinner, and don’t have anything working? You might want to pop on a show or movie, check out what’s up with your family, or look up something for your lessons tomorrow but these options aren’t readily available.

What do you do for entertainment in China? Here are some ideas when your options are on the blink!

1. Hobbies

A lot of teachers I know reconnect with hobbies they love but might not have had time for previously. Things such as writing, drawing, painting, playing instruments, martial arts, or dance.

China can be a perfect incubator space for these things as it can be fairly cheap to come across the materials or space needed and you might find yourself with some extra time to practice. Especially with entertainment options dwindling, you might find yourself pulling out that brush and easel in no time!

2. Friends

It’s always good to have plenty of friends but they might be hard to come by somewhere where you don’t speak the same language.

It’s important to try to find local friends but the community of foreign teachers can also be a strong support group for times when you might feel a little bored, lonely, or might need some help or advice.

Take time to get to know those around you, host events if you can, invite people out for dinner or drinks, and get to know your neighbors!

3. Social Clubs

Most areas will have different social clubs like Rotary Clubs, Women’s Clubs, Book Clubs, or volunteering. While it might take a while to find them or it might take a bit of effort to make the meetings, it’s a great way to fill up an evening if you don’t have many other options.

You can also meet people, learn a craft, and feel good about what you’re doing while meeting new friends.

4. Music/Chinese Sites

If the internet is working, you can always try some Chinese-based sites to play some music or find some tv shows or movies you are used to. This might take a while to uncover, but without a lot of options, these will work!

Log onto baidu.music or youku to find something to fill up the silent space in your apartment—there are also a couple of channels on the cable provided in most areas that are in English. You can always turn on some Chinese TV to buff up your mandarin!

5. Walk

It’s not an everyday occurrence that you end up across the world – time to explore! Even the smallest neighborhoods will usually have something interesting and different to see. Go for a walk and explore if it’s not too late at night! Otherwise, you could take a taxi/bus to a more frequented location and take a look around.

6. Learn Something

Now is the time to study something—use the time wisely! If you want to learn Chinese, there is no better place. If you want to get a teaching license, you have the time and ability to take classes online, go for it!

If you want to learn a new hobby, there are plenty of places to learn. Or you could purchase the materials and teach yourself. Take lessons, read, and invest time in some further study!

7. Teach Something

Along with you learning something new, many other people around here want to learn something new as well. You can pick up some extra lessons during the week teaching something you know well, whether it be English, painting, drawing, or martial arts.

Post your skill on a website and people will contact you wanting to learn!

Sometimes the entertainment options you are used to might be on the blink in China, but it can be a good fortune! Spend the time to do something different, learn something about others or yourself, and take some time to find new things to spend your time on!

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