Facts About (PRC) China ( Geography)

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Facts about China.The Peoples Republic of China. China geography.Chinese facts and figures. China facts.Chinese New Year. China language.China map. China list of provinces.China facts. China geography.

The People's Republic of China is considered the largest country in Asia, and the third largest in the world.  It covers an area of 9.6 million sq km, with 14,500 km of coastline, and borders with 14 countries:

afghanistan, Nepal, Bhutan, north-korea Laos,the-russian-federation , Kazakhstan, south-korea, Tajikstan, Mongolia,Tibet,india, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

Due to its size, China has a diverse climate and topography.  Its coastline is along the east and south of the country, where it experiences high rainfall and high temperatures. The east coast experiences monsoon rains in the spring. Inland in the north east, it has severe problems with prolonged drought, causing vast dust storms. China loses a million acres of arable land a year to desertification in this area. Along its southern coast it has a sub-tropical and humid atmosphere most of the year.The north eastern area is alluvial plains, in the south east, it is dotted with small mountain ranges.

 The north of the country is dry and arid with grass steppe land, having very hot dry summers and very cold winters .On its northern high tundra, it experiences year-round low temperatures and frigidity.

To its west are large mountain ranges, including the Himalayas, with large high plains and the Gobi desert.

 It's central core is a vast fertile and arable plain, situated on two of its largest river deltas, which experience four distinct seasons with very hot summers and very cold winters.


                                     Mnt Everest              The Tamakakan Desert


 China has the second longest rail network in the world at 91,000 kilometres and is also home to 770,265 kilometres of paved roadways. China also has nine main river systems which also play an important part in it's transport network.The longest river in China is The River Yangste at 6,300 km, followed by The Yellow River at 5464,km.


                                                          The Three Gorges Dam

The Three Gorges Dam is situated on the River Yangsze, is the largest hydro electric plant in the world, at 2,335 m long and 185 m high. The dam has caused much controvesy since it's conception, owing to the flooding of thousands of acres of land in the local area, which meant the relocation of thousands of people who had lived and worked in the surrounding area.Most of these people have been relocated on the island of Chongming, which is part of the environs of the city of shanghai

The country has 15 basic mountain ranges, situated mainly in the south east and west, with its highest point being Mount Everest in the Himalaya range, at 8550 metres.

It's lowest point is the Bramhaputra Canyon, which is the deepest in the world, at 6009 metres.

Politically the country is made up of 23 provinces, 5 automonous regions, 4 municipalities,2 administrative regions, 1 territory and around 600 offshore islands, of which taiwan is the largest and politically known as the Republic of China.

China is considered to have the largest population in the world, of 1.3 billion--that's one fifth or 22% of the world's population.  Its population density is 139.6 per sq km, but becouse of a high migrant population, it is hard to make proper census returns. 

China is the home to the most populated city in the world. shanghai, and it's capital city, Beijing is the world's most populated capital city. 



It's ten most populated cities are as follows;

shanghai. 20,884,600.                           Chongqing. 7,500,000.

Beijing. 17,430,000.                             Hong Kong 7,055,071.

Guangzhou. 15,000,000.                     Dongguan. 6,950,000.            

Shenzhen. 13,300,000.                       Nanjing. 6,800,000.

Tianjin. 11,950,000.                             Wuhan. 6,600,000.

The Chinese government have also designated five cities which have been chosen to lead the field in the urbanisation of rural China, which are in charge of the political, economic, cultural, and urban development of their surrounding areas. These cities are known as China's National Central Cities and are the cities of Beijing, Chongquing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Tianjin.


                            Canola fields.                  Rice Terraces.


 There are 56 ethnic groups in China, with 91% being Han Chinese.The other minorities are;

Zhuang 16 million.             Yi 7 million.

Manchu 10 million.            Tujia 5.75 million.

Hui 9 million.                       Mongol 5 million.

Mioa 8 million.                    Tibetan 5 million.

Uyghur 7 million.                Buyei 3 million.

Korean. 2 million.


                                                        A Buddhist ceremony.

Religion in China is state approved, with ethnic Christians and Islamics not admitting to polls, those that have admitted to a religion census, states that there are 660million Bhuddist and 400million Taoists in the country.

                                                                      CHINESE NEW YEAR.

There is no fixed date for the Chinese new year, as it is celebrated in accordance with the lunar calendar.

The Chinese lunar calendar is based on the cyclical dating that is governed by the track of the new moon, resulting in new year occuring any where between late January and mid February.

A complete cycle takes sixty years which consists of five twelve year cycles.

Each year is named after an animal.

It is said that when Lord Buddha began his departure from this earth, he summoned all the animals to him.

Only twelve animals came to bid him farewll, so Lord Buddha named each year after one of them.

The animals were;

The rat.                 The horse.

The ox.                  The sheep.

The tiger.              The monkey.

The rabbit.            The rooster.

The dragon.          The dog.

The snake.            The boar.

According to myth, each ruling animal of the year of a persons birth, greatly influences a persons traits and behaviour.

New year celebrations last for 15 days and are celebrated by gifts of money given in red envelopes.

Great street parades are held, with a dragon at the lead, followed by people holding aloft red lanterns.Large firework displays are held, and the traditional meal is sea food and dumplings, which symbolises prosperity and good fortune.

The Chinese traditional new year greeting is ' kung hall sun lei '.  



                                                              A Chinese computer keyboard.

 A free and compulsary nine year education is adherred to in China, with a literacy rate of 90%.

The official language of China is Mandarin, spoken by 8million,or 70% of the population. It is of the Sino-Tibetan group of languages.

There are another 80 languages with thousands of dialects spoken in China, no one has actually been able to make a proper count, but the most spoken after Mandarin seem to be Cantonese, Xiang, Min, and Hakka.



China is located in the most seismically active region in the world,located along an area known as the Pacific Ring of Fire, the country sits on 64 major tectonic zones.

The world's deadliest ever recorded earthquake was in China, in 1556, with the death of 830,000 people. 

Since the beginning of the 20th century China has endured 26 earthquakes of a magnitude of more than 5.0, resulting in the deaths of thousands of people, as well as numerous earthquakes of a smaller magnitude. 


  What is the difference between the PRC ( Peoples Republic of China) and the ROC ( Republic of China) ?

The government of China ( PRC ) is a Socialist Peoples Democracy, governed by one party with a Premier as it's leader under a communist regime

Most people consider this to mean mainland China, as the ROC is considered only to be the island of taiwan, which has a democratic government under a Confucian regime. 

Therefore,leading to a marked difference in political phylosophy,policing and religious practices.  

China also has political problems with other autonomous regions within it's domain, including Tibet, Mongolia,Hong Kong and with the Hui ethnic minority in the province of Xinjiang Uyghur.


                                                              The Forbidden City.

 The currency is the Renmimbi, or Chinese Yuan. Renmimbi means ' peoples currency' in Mandarin. The central bank of China is the ' Peoples Bank Of China.

Time zone UTC + 8.                                 

Calling code  +86.                                                            

Int TLD  .cn

The country's capital is Beijing. 

For people travelling to China who may require transport information at Chinese airports please refer to these pages -




Politically mainland China is made up of 23 provinces, 4 municipalities, 5 autonomous regions 2 administration regions and 1 territory, The PRC also holds sway over around 600 offshore islands, including the largest and most politically problematic, taiwan.

                                        MAP OF CHINA PROVINCES WITH POPULATION IN MILLIONS.


                                                                                           © D.B.Bellamy.December.2009.

                                                                  OTHER ARTICLES ABOUT CHINA BY THE SAME AUTHOR.







                                                           All Images courtesy of wikimedia commons.


Posted on Feb 21, 2010
Colin Dovey
Posted on Feb 21, 2010