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Learn Chinese in Guilin

There is a Chinese proverb: Guilin’s landscape is the best in the world (Guìlín shānshuǐ jiǎtiānxià). Guilin, located in Guangxi Province, is surrounded by picturesque limestone mountains on the famous Li River in China. The natural landscape of Guilin is so fascinating that it is even printed on the back of China’s twenty yuan banknote. Because of this, many international students are attracted by its beautiful scenery and consider it the destination to study Mandarin in China.

But the best landscape in the world does not mean that this place is also the best place to study. In contrast, Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan Province next to Guangxi Province, is a better choice for learning the Chinese language. I’m listing out the specific reasons as follow in today’s post:



The transportation system in Guilin is not very convenient and efficient. The airport and the north and south railway stations can facilitate inter-city transportation. However, there are only buses and taxis in the city, as well as privately operated motorcycles. If you are going to travel long-distance within the city, it will be time-consuming.

As a transportation hub in southwest China, Kunming not only has the fifth-largest international airport in the country but also a comprehensive subway transportation system in the city. It is very convenient to fly to Kunming from major cities across the country. At the same time, Kunming can easily fly to various tourist countries in Southeast Asia by its border with many Southeast Asian countries.

To promote Yunnan’s tourism industry, the high-speed rail system in Yunnan Province has gradually improved. As the most attractive tourist province in China, Yunnan has different tourism resources. If you study in Kunming, you will be able to enjoy the convenience of travel very conveniently.

Especially when studying at Keats School, you can choose the Study + Tour program. This program will bring you the best Chinese learning experience and the hassle-free touring service in Yunnan.

Climate & Weather

Guilin City is located southwest of the Nanling Mountains, with an average elevation of 150 meters. It features a typical “karst” landform. The limestones all over the city have been eroded by hundreds of millions of years, forming a unique landscape here.

The climate of Guilin is a humid monsoon climate in the mid-subtropical zone, characterized by sultry summers, damp and cold winters. If you live here for a long time, you need to keep dehumidifying items and dryers. Otherwise, the stored clothes and food are more likely to become moldy. And the laundry is not easy to dry. The rainy season is also prone to flooding.

In contrast, Kunming’s climate is more liveable. Because of its mild climate, Kunming has won the reputation as the “eternal spring city,” but the four seasons here in Kunming are also very distinct.

Kunming is also windy in spring, but the wind in Kunming is cool and moist, and it feels as comfortable as a massage when it touches the skin. The most comfortable season of Kunming is summer. Unlike other cities in China, Kunming will not experience the sweltering heat. The climate throughout the whole year in Kunming is divided into dry and wet seasons. Although precipitation will generally increase in summer, the humidity will stay low, and you can still enjoy dry and cool summer weather here. Wintertime is the dry season, featured with reduced precipitation and large daily temperature differences. Preparing a suitable coat to keep yourself warm in the early morning and late evening, you can still enjoy lovely and comfortable wintertime here in Kunming.

Check out Climates of Different Places in Yunnan 

Local Cuisine

Kunming belongs to Yunnan Province, and Guilin belongs to Guangxi Province. The dietary preferences of both provinces tend to be similar. People from these two provinces both love a spicy and sour flavor. Besides, they both tend to use fresh local ingredients for cooking.

However, Yunnan’s food culture has integrated with more ethnic characteristics. At the same time, Yunnan also enjoys the reputation of the kingdom of animals and plants and the kingdom of wild mushrooms, so in Yunnan, you can taste more delicious wild ingredients from nature. Especially Kunming city, the capital city of the Yunnan province, has gathered the essence of the food from all parts of the province. Without long-distance traveling, you can also taste the special dishes of different ethnic groups and regions.


The impact from the dialects

Guangxi Province, where Guilin is located, belongs to the Cantonese dialect area, while Yunnan Province, where Kunming is located, belongs to the northern dialect system. As most Chinese learners are familiar with, in China, people use different dialects in different regions in addition to the common Mandarin. However, China has a vast territory and diverse and rich cultures, so dialects are also various in different regions.

The northern dialect system is very similar to Mandarin. When you live in an area where the northern dialect is spoken, you can easily understand the speaker even if the local people you talk to do not speak Standard Mandarin. However, the Southern Cantonese dialect outside the northern dialect system is very different from Mandarin, and the tonal pronunciation of words is very different. The dialect accent even has a great impact on the pronunciation of Mandarin. You will find that the locals in this area have thick accents when they speak Mandarin, and this kind of accent will greatly influence your Mandarin learning and communication.

If you have studied Chinese for many years and want to learn more about Chinese dialects, Guilin is a good place. But if you intend to have an immersive learning experience and are still in the early stages of Chinese learning, it is better to choose a city with weaker dialect influence, such as Kunming.

Generally speaking, Guilin is a good place for leisure and vacation, and you can appreciate the natural scenery of southern China and the customs of Nanyue culture at the same time. Especially between July and September of each year, it is a city very suitable for sightseeing.

But if learning the Chinese language is your ultimate goal, Kunming will be a more ideal destination for you. Moreover, Keats School, the best and biggest Chinese language school in China, has also established good cooperation with China Highlights, which can provide students with advice and customized tour services in Guilin and even Guangxi province for Keats students after they complete their Mandarin learning. Therefore, studying in Kunming, especially to study Chinese at Keats School, will be a wiser choice for any Mandarin learner.

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Josh | USA

Small Group Chinese Class

I really had a wonderful experience at the school. The teachers are very very friendly. In my class, we practice speaking, listening, reading, and writing. We play games and other fun activities. We have trips around town. The staff at Keats is phenomenal. My teacher is one of the best teachers I have ever had in my educational experience. She comes in with a smile every day.


嶋田京子 | Japan

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

Kunming’s scenery is very beautiful. It is the best place to study Chinese in China. My favorite learning method at Keats School is one-on-one because it is suitable for everyone. My teacher is very good, very caring, and lovely. My life when learning Chinese in Kunming is very good and the weather is very good. The air is very good. It is good for the elderly’s body.


Claudia | Australia

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I’ve been at Keats school and Kunming now for one month doing the one-on-one Chinese lessons with two different teachers. I really enjoy it. Both of my teachers are very friendly and patient. They really helped me to improve my Chinese, both of my reading and speaking. I really enjoy studying Chinese in Kunming as well. This city is really beautiful and the weather is nice, the air is clean. It’s one of the best cities in China to study Chinese.


Hilary | USA

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I’ve had a really great time here. I’ve studied a lot with my teacher who was fantastic. Keats School tried very hard to match its students with really good teachers that their personality works very well together. I really enjoy studying Chinese at Keats and I will definitely come back.


Jean | USA

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

I can’t tell you how much I liked it. The thing I liked about the teachers and the teaching method is that there is so much flexibility. The other thing I liked about the teaching is the combination of classic textbook learning and going outside. I loved it! I like getting to know other students. Everybody shared the same goal and that’s making their Chinese better. Kunming is a big city, but it is very safe to live here. Another thing I liked about Keats is the idea that people here help you. I can’t recommend it enough. I think it was a valuable experience. Looking forward to coming back!


Ramji | USA

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

The best part of the school is the patience the instructors had and the time to focus on the fundamentals like pronunciation. I think it is very easy to skip over those and go to vocabulary. But by learning the pronunciation, I feel like it helped me gain a better understanding of the language.


Mike | Australia

Small Group Chinese Class

I think Kunming is a great city, the weather is really good. I really like Keats school and found it is very organized. The teachers here are very good. They have a coffee shop and new classrooms, a new lounge area here now, so you can chill out with your friends and practice your spoken Chinese with natives. If you’re considering coming to Keats to study, I would really recommend it. It’s the best place to learn Mandarin and I think it will be a great experience for you.



Judith | USA

Intensive One-on-One Chinese Classes

Listening and speaking in the classroom every day has improved my communication skills. After three weeks, my new words and sentences became more and more natural and fluent. Now I am used to thinking in Chinese, and I understand better what other people say, to be able to have real conversations with other people.

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