Learning Resources

Discover the incredible world of Chinese language, traditions and modern society, and learn Chinese (中文 zhōngwén) along the way. We welcome you to explore Chinese language and culture with CLI as your guide.

Chinese Language and Culture Learning Resources

Learn Chinese 学中文

Top 10 Chinese Podcasts for Language Learners

Top 10 Chinese Podcasts for Language Learners

Using podcasts is an incredibly versatile way to improve your Chinese level. Not only will you improve your listening skills, but you will also learn a lot of new vocabulary along the way. Podcasts provide you with exposure to a variety of different topics and access to content designed for native…

Which Online Chinese Dictionary Should I Use?

Which Online Chinese Dictionary Should I Use?

Whether you’re just getting started on your Chinese learning journey or have been an avid student of the language for years, one thing is certain: you’ll need a reliable online Chinese dictionary to help enrich your vocabulary. With so many stellar (and not-so-stellar) resources out there…

What is the Chinese currency called?

What is the Chinese currency called?

China has the world’s second largest economy and Chinese money plays an increasingly important role in global financial transactions. That said, there's still a great deal of confusion when it comes to Chinese currency. Even the question of what to call Chinese money...

How Do I Say My Name in Chinese?

How Do I Say My Name in Chinese?

When traveling about in China, you’ll need to introduce yourself to those you meet along the way. The vast differences between Chinese and English mean it’s important to know the Chinese equivalent of your English name. Read on to discover how to say your name in...

How Do You Say “No” in Chinese?

How Do You Say “No” in Chinese?

If you’re a beginning Mandarin student, chances are you’re eager to learn some of the most basic Chinese words and phrases. After “hello” and “my name is,” learning to say “no” in Chinese is likely near the top of your list. Read this article to discover 10 ways to...

Complete Introduction to Chinese Measure Words

Complete Introduction to Chinese Measure Words

As a student of Chinese, measure words (量词 or liàngcí in pinyin) are one of the first aspects of Chinese grammar you’ll encounter. The fact that almost all Chinese nouns must be preceded by a measure word makes these pesky classifiers hard to avoid. Luckily, Chinese...

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Chinese Characters 汉字

Introduction to Simplified Chinese Characters

Introduction to Simplified Chinese Characters

Most Chinese characters look complicated to the outside observer, but not all characters are created equal. There are two main Chinese writing systems, traditional and simplified. Traditional characters are based on historical Chinese writing systems with roots...

How Many Characters are There in Chinese?

How Many Characters are There in Chinese?

We know there are quite a few Chinese characters (汉字, Hànzì), but how many, exactly? The answer depends on perspective. Are we considering all characters in existence throughout China’s long history or “just” those used in modern times? The number of unique Chinese characters…

Introduction to Traditional Chinese Characters

Introduction to Traditional Chinese Characters

If you learned Chinese characters in Mainland China, you may be surprised to find that you can’t understand most text you see when traveling in Taiwan or Hong Kong. There isn’t anything wrong with your eyes. The simplified Chinese characters people in Mainland China...

The 100 Most Common Chinese Characters

The 100 Most Common Chinese Characters

Have you ever wondered what the most common Chinese characters are? In a language of approximately 50,000 individual characters, mastering the most commonly used Chinese characters—and knowing their order of frequency—will benefit you along your path to language...

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Chinese Culture 中国文化

Your Guide to the Year of the Ox (2021)

Your Guide to the Year of the Ox (2021)

According to the Chinese zodiac, every year has an animal associated with it. There are 12 different zodiac animals in total, and the Year of the Ox is the second animal in this 12-year rotation. People in China believe that the year in which someone is born can influence…

The Tang Dynasty: China’s Golden Age

The Tang Dynasty: China’s Golden Age

China’s long history can be confusing. Instead of trying to memorize every single dynasty, it helps to focus on the most important ones. If there’s one period every student of Chinese should know, it’s the Tang dynasty. Read on for an introduction to this exciting…

Ultimate Guide to Chinese Names

Ultimate Guide to Chinese Names

Chinese names can be puzzling for those not familiar with Chinese language and culture. This article will provide you with the ultimate guide to Chinese names. Read on to learn about Chinese surnames and discover how first names are picked, how to…

Ultimate Guide to Social Media in China

Ultimate Guide to Social Media in China

Utilizing China’s home-grown social media platforms is an excellent way to gain insight into the complex and always fascinating world of modern Chinese culture. This is particularly true if you find yourself traveling or living in China. However, it's not always easy...

An Introduction to Chinese Numerology

An Introduction to Chinese Numerology

Chinese homophones have a profound influence on Chinese culture. In Chinese numerology, certain numbers are considered to be auspicious (吉利 jílì) or inauspicious (不吉 bùjí), mainly due to their pronunciation. The numbers 2, 8, and 9 are…

Journey into the World of Chinese Tea

Journey into the World of Chinese Tea

China is synonymous with tea, and tea with China. In fact, the history of tea in China is almost as long as the history of China itself. Despite the recent rise of coffee, tea continues to enjoy great popularity. Read on to learn about the past, present and future of...

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Chinese Holidays 中国传统节日

What is Singles’ Day and how is it celebrated?

What is Singles’ Day and how is it celebrated?

Whilst we are bombarded with images of love and romance through the media and holidays like Valentines’ day, thousands of Chinese people gather every year on November 11th to celebrate the joys of being single. Chinese “Singles’ Day” (光棍节 guāng gùn jié) or “Double 11”…

A Brief Guide to the Chinese New Year (春节 Chūnjié)

A Brief Guide to the Chinese New Year (春节 Chūnjié)

Chinese New Year, also called the Spring Festival (春节, Chūnjié), celebrates the beginning of the Chinese year based on the traditional Chinese lunisolar calendar. The Chinese calendar starts each new year with 立春 lìchūn, which officially marks the first day of spring.

China’s Qingming Festival, Explained

China’s Qingming Festival, Explained

Qingming Festival (清明节 or Qīngmíngjié in pīnyīn), also called Tomb Sweeping Day or Pure Brightness Festival, is an important traditional Chinese holiday. The festival is celebrated both in China and among members of Chinese communities around the world. The main...

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Traveling in China 环游中国

Beijing Summer Palace: The Essential Travel Guide

Beijing Summer Palace: The Essential Travel Guide

Beijing. When most people think of this city, they immediately think of the Forbidden City or Tiananmen Square. While these places are certainly worth your time, your trip won’t be complete unless you also visit the slightly less well-known Summer Palace. This grand...

CLI Coronavirus Updates

CLI Coronavirus Updates

Due to the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many students may find their study plans affected. While CLI is currently open and the situation in China has stabilized, other countries may be experiencing surges. To help students understand their options during this confusing time, we will post frequent updates to this page.

A Definitive Travel Guide to All Things Shenyang, China

A Definitive Travel Guide to All Things Shenyang, China

Shenyang (沈阳 Shěnyáng), formerly known as Mukden, is a city located in northeastern China’s Liaoning Province (辽宁省 Liáoníng Shěng). This bustling Chinese provincial capital with a complex past is a great destination for Qing dynasty history buffs. CLI’s Shenyang...

Your Guide to Taking the Shanghai-Beijing Bullet Train

Your Guide to Taking the Shanghai-Beijing Bullet Train

Shanghai (上海 Shànghǎi) and Beijing (北京 Běijīng) are the two biggest cities in China, and as such, they're highly connected. Whether you’re visiting for business, to pursue your studies, or just to get to know the country better, knowing how to travel between these...

The 10 Best Places to Visit in China

The 10 Best Places to Visit in China

China is vast. In fact, it’s off-the-scale massive, and its diversity is really second to none. Choosing this country as your next travel destination will provide you with an almost limitless scope for exploration. This article offers CLI’s recommended 10 best places...

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Guilin 桂林

Learn About Guilin Rice Noodles

Learn About Guilin Rice Noodles

Guilin rice noodles, or 桂林米粉 (Guìlín mǐfěn), is the ultimate dish to try in CLI’s beautiful home city of Guilin. These straightforward yet filling noodles are served in a variety of ways. Most often, they’re soaked in a thin savory broth, garnished with delicate…

Beautiful Photos from Guilin

Beautiful Photos from Guilin

Guilin is a sightseer’s dream, a photographer’s oasis, a nature enthusiast’s playground, and for the language learner’s of the world—Guilin is an unparalleled treasure trove. This post is a shout out to a few of the…

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Learning Chinese Online 在线学汉语

Top 8 Ways to Learn Chinese Online

Top 8 Ways to Learn Chinese Online

Although ideal, it’s not always possible to learn Chinese in China. While complete Chinese immersion is the best way to go, it’s amazing how much Chinese you can learn online. The internet connects us! Here are CLI’s top 8 methods to learn Chinese online…

Top 5 YouTube Channels for Studying Mandarin

Top 5 YouTube Channels for Studying Mandarin

Anyone who has searched “learn Mandarin” on YouTube might agree that the sheer number of results is overwhelming. We have good news for you: it is possible to learn Chinese on YouTube! A handful of channels consistently deliver…

An Official Review of Yoyo Chinese (2021)

An Official Review of Yoyo Chinese (2021)

Have you heard of Yoyo Chinese, a popular online platform for learning Mandarin? Established in 2012 by native Chinese speaker and expert teacher Yangyang Cheng, the Yoyo Chinese curriculum utilizes videos, flashcards and an extensive range of other educational...

What is Skritter?

What is Skritter?

Skritter is a fresh, inventive way to master Chinese characters. If you’re not a current user, take the following steps to get hooked up immediately—trust us, your Chinese skills will thank you. Because each platform offers its own study mode, the first move is to decide if you want to use the tool online or via your mobile device.

What is Anki?

What is Anki?

If your goal is to memorize lots of new information (think: Chinese characters), consider utilizing a spaced repetition system. Studies show that doing so can dramatically improve one’s retention and recollection of information. Anki packages this system into an easy-to-use interface in which users can create original flashcards or download…

Why Learn Chinese With CLI

Personalized Instruction For Every Student

CLI provides personalized care and attention wherever and whenever you need it. From pre-departure planning to study objectives, program logistics and your safety and well-being, we put forth our full energy and expertise to deliver the ultimate experience learning Chinese in China.

aerial shot of Guilin

Our Programs

Chinese Language and Culture

learn chinese in china

Chinese Immersion

One-on-one instruction and complete immersion within a safe, friendly language environment is among the most direct paths to Chinese fluency. Begin your stay in Guilin anytime and improve your Chinese each day in a focused and welcoming community of learners.

Learn Chinese Online

CLI’s online Chinese lessons bring the classroom directly to you, providing the flexibility to continue your school or work commitments while learning Chinese. Our online lessons are held to the same high standard as courses taught at the CLI Center in Guilin.

travel in china

Immersive Travel

Each year, CLI partners with a select number of schools and associations worldwide to organize customizable study experiences throughout China. Explore this section of our site to learn more about joining a travel group or arranging a custom program of your own.

Contact Us

Reach Out Anytime

learn chinese in china
learn chinese in china

CLI is dedicated to helping students from around the globe learn Chinese and explore China’s incredible culture and traditions. Reach out to us anytime, day or night, and we’ll respond within two weekdays.