Travel guide

Discover as many regions as there are flavours

One of the most populous countries in the world (nearly 1,400,000,000 inhabitants), and as rich in cultural discoveries as its population!

Across its 9 million km2, China offers a surprising range of landscapes, flavors and languages. More than 50 ethnic minorities, over twenty provinces, five autonomous regions, and many political debates still raging.

The bitter government and the ravages of the past are what we often remember about this state, if not all its wonders: the terracotta army in Xi’an, the still-authentic villages where the Miao make their costumes, the mysterious mountains of the south in Guilin, the Avatar set in Zhang Jia Jie, or the smell of Peking duck and steamed buns in the courtyards of Beijing’s hutongs. China also plays host to new technologies and welcomes many artists seeking free expression. Take a tour of Beijing’s Qijiuba (789) district, to find out.

Time difference



Chinese Yuan Renminbi


Telephone prefix


How do you say...

Some words and expressions in the language

  • Good morning / Good evening – Za?oshang ha?o/xiàwu? 
  • How are you? – Ni?ha?o ma? 
  • Fine, thank you, and you? – H?n ha?o, xièxiè ni? ne? 
  • Do you speak French/English? – Ni?huì shu? fa?yu?/y?ngyu? ma? 
  • I understand/ I don’t understand – Wo? bu ting dong. 
  • Sorry – Dui bu Qi/ Mei guan Xi 
  • Goodbye – Zàijiàn 
  • Welcome – Hu?nyíng 
  • Thank you (very much) – Xièxiè (Duo Xie) 
  • Excuse me/Please – Dui bu qi 
  • I am French – Wo? shì fàguó rén 
  • My name is… – Wo? de míngzì shì…/ Wo jiao 
  • No thanks – Bù, xièxiè 
  • Yes/No – Dui/ fo?u, Bu Shi 
  • You’re welcome – Méishénme/qi?ng/ Mei guan xi 
  • How much is it? – Du?sha?o qián? 
  • How do I get to…? – Wo? huì qù… 

Key figures

China is on the GMT +8 time zone, so when it’s midday in Paris, it’s 6 p.m. in Beijing, i.e. 06:00 hours later (summer time in France). And when it’s 2pm in Nanjing, China, it will be 8am in Marseille.

Good to know

American plugs – Type A and Type I

From France to China: dial 00 + 86 (China code) + the city code (without the leading 0) + the correspondent’s number. From China to France: dial 00 (international) + 33 (French dialling code) + the correspondent’s 9-digit number (without the leading 0).


We strongly recommend that you keep your vaccinations up to date. As always, it’s important to be protected against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, polio, hepatitis A and B, measles and, possibly, rabies. Depending on the type of stay: Japanese encephalitis, and preventive treatment against malaria. Consult your GP. 

Health risks are high, so it’s a good idea to be sensible when consuming food and drink (tap water is sometimes undrinkable). 

Medical costs can be high, so it’s a good idea to take out insurance or check that you have adequate coverage for your stay. 


Valid passport, valid 6 months after the date of return, for French nationals. For other nationalities, we’ll be happy to help you with all the formalities.

A visa is required to enter China (tourist visa for up to 30 days). Visit for more information. You may be asked to provide a number of documents, so please make arrangements a little in advance.

Nationals do not need a visa if they wish to visit Hong Kong or Macau for tourist purposes, unless they subsequently move to mainland China, where a visa will be required. You can also obtain a visa exemption for Hainan Island, provided you travel through an agency for a group of at least 5 people, and for no more than 15 days.

Please note: China reserves the right of entry, not least as an echo of its former unauthorized tourist destinations, as well as on other criteria. This also applies to visa holders.