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Chengdu Kunming Nanjing or Hangzhou


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sorry for asking this question once again.

But I really can't make up my mind. So I would be really glad about every answer or comment.

On the 28th I'll go to China and want, after travelling for a while, to stay/live/make friends at one place for about half year to get to know a little bit the everyday life of China. The travelling in the beginning, is because there is no possibility, as far I know, to start a language course together with other beginners like me, before the spring semester.

And may be it can help me little bit to decide where to study.

After my travelling back in 1996 in China for about 4months as a backpacker and reading almost every line of this forum twice, I could reduced my favourites to Chengdu, Kunming, Nanjing and Hangzhou.

So ... who could help me a little bit ?



PS: I hope you had and will have a lot of fun with my english.

I'll introduce myself to this forum when I have a little bit more time

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Kunming is where I'll be living a few days from now. I lived there for about 6 months until this past July. I haven't been to the other cities, but I think Kunming was a great place to live. The weather is really good and the culture of the city is very interesting. The local people are inviting and it is easy to make friends. Cost of living is low because Kunming is still a "backwards" place, or so they say, although it has all the conveniences of any modern city, a decent nightlife, and is clean and good-looking. The Yunnan countryside is very poor however (although it's beautiful), and the countryside really dominates the province. Kunming itself is a very nice place to live.

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Does Kunming feel isolated? It seems so far away when looking at it on the map... what is the access like into other cities and other countries?

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kunming is well connected by train, plane, and bus to other cities in china. there are flights to/from thailand, HK, singapore, japan, south korea, macau, and myanmar. there is also a train service from hanoi to kunming. there is also transportation by bus to yunnan's borders with laos and myanmar. there is a degree of isolation, but it has been eroding for more than a century.

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Tough choice. Nanjing would be best for language study. Kunming and Chengdu are both great for excursions. Hangzhou is a nice place to live for a while. I would probably vote for Kunming as well, simply because it allows you to explore a lot of territory that would otherwise be unreachable on future China itineraries with less time. You can always add Nanjing and Hangzhou to almost any vacation plan, but Yunnan province is tough to add when you're doing business up north. I could make a very good argument for Chengdu based on Sichuan's attractions (there are many) but I'm averse to hot spicy food. When I think of Yunnan's tropical delights the choice gets easier for me.

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