This past Saturday we took students to Tianjin, a municipality around two hours away from Beijing. Tianjin is the fourth largest city in China by population, and has been a major seaport and gateway to China since the city’s formation.
Thanks to an early start, we were able to get a lot done despite going to an entirely different city. We started off with a nice relaxing boat ride. It was a worthwhile trip not only because we were able to see and learn about some of the most important buildings, but also because we shared our boat with many local Chinese and students ended up having really great conversations with them, once again putting their Chinese to the test in real life situations.
For lunch, we headed over to a bustling snack street. Before letting students chow down on Tianjin’s different delicacies, we had everyone eat together at a Tianjin specialty restaurant. During lunch a performer even came into our rooms and told us a story about foreigners coming to Tianjin using traditional Chinese clapper talk.
After filling up on all different kinds of traditional snacks, we went on over to visit Nankai University, one of China’s most historically significant universities. One of China’s top universities, Nankai University is also the alma mater of former Premier Zhou Enlai. Our tour guides provided us with lots of interesting facts about the school and we even found a few good locations for taking pictures.
We ended our trip at the historical Culture Street, a shopping area featuring classic Chinese architecture and shops selling a mix of traditional Chinese goods and souvenirs. It was a long, fun-filled day, but students were glad when we finally made it back to the dorms in Beijing.
Timothy Liu, Director of Residential Life