This is one of the first things all Chinese people learn at the dinner table. Chinese people believe it’s a virtue to cherish their food, which isn’t difficult to understand considering that the older generations once suffered from the Great Famine in the 1960s. As the famous verse from Tang dynasty poet Li Shen’s poem Sympathy for the Peasants (悯农) goes, “Each grain in your rice plate is the result of hard labor. (谁知盘中餐，粒粒皆辛苦。)”.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Don’t be fussy about what you eat
In Chinese there’s a saying that goes, “Food is the ultimate necessity of people. (民以食为天。)”. We all have our likes and dislikes when it comes to food. But every Chinese person grows up having at least once been forced by their parents to eat whatever it is on the table that is edible.
Never make sounds while eating
It can be agonising to have to listen to other people smacking their lips while eating, sucking meat off bones or slurping soup noodles. Many Chinese people are taught not to do this from an early age.
It’s disrespectful to eat before your elders
By this point you might think that Chinese people are singularly obsessed with food – and you’d be right. Chinese kids are taught to only start eating after the elders start using their chopsticks. Though it’s a small detail, it reflects the Chinese tradition of respecting the elderly.
Younger kids go first
It’s pretty demanding to be a Chinese kid, having to both respect people who are older and help out those who are younger. Every Chinese knows the story of East Han dynasty essayist Kong Rong (153 – 208 C.E.), who, at the age of four, gave his brother the bigger pear. Chinese kids are thus told to learn from Kong, and at least give way to kids who are younger than them, as it’s usually considered that the younger is the least sensible.
Eat food hot rather than cold
Chinese people strongly believe that we are what we eat. They also believe eating well can keep a person in good health. Chinese kids are often told that food should be eaten hot, not cold. This belief is thought to have come from traditional Chinese medicine, which warns against eating food that is cold in nature, such as duck meat, watermelon and green tea.
Don’t sleep/go out with wet hair
Many Chinese kids are told by their parents to not sleep or go out with wet hair. It is said to weaken the immune system, which is why we usually feel headaches after ignoring our parents’ advice.
Don’t accept small gifts without reciprocating
It’s not ok to take large gifts from other people either, but Chinese parents are more particular about their children not accepting small presents or favors from others without returning them, even if it’s just a small piece of candy. This habit originates from an old saying in China, “吃人家的嘴短，拿人家的手软”, which means “There’s no such thing as free lunch”. It’s a small thing that is likely to go unnoticed by children, but could have butterfly effect in the long run.
Don’t shuffle, walk
While the rest of the world might idolise the king of pop, if MJ’s parents were Chinese, he’d have been told off for looking unenergetic long before coming up with his famous moonwalk.
Don’t compare yourself with someone worse than you
There’s an old proverb in China: “人往高处走，水往低处流 (Men struggle upwards; water flows downwards)”. Chinese parents see this saying as the gospel truth, and repeat it to their kids so they don’t compare with people worse than them. It can make you feel better by doing so, but it’s just quenching thirst with poison.
There’s no such thing as medicine for regret
All Chinese people will find this line wearily familiar. Whenever we feel sorry about our mistakes, our parents will say “世上没有后悔药 (There’s no such thing as medicine for regret).” Similar to “It’s no use crying over spilled milk” in English, this is the Chinese version of a universal truth that there’s nothing we can do about something already happened instead of moving on.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.