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Rediscovering Kunming from the view of foreigners

By : InKunming|Updated: 2011-05-16

What does Kunming look like in eyes of foreigners? What do foreigners like? A questionnaire about foreigners in Kunming was conducted in April by reporters of InKunming. This questionnaire covers nearly every side of daily lives. Twenty-nine interviewees are students in 36 questionnaires, 2 businessmen, 1 traveler, one who comes to Kunming to visit relatives or friends, and other three people who didn’t detail their purposes to Kunming. The age group of interviewees is between 20 and 30, and most of them come from North America, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and Korea.

※Attractive Weather

Data have showed that weather in Kunming is the greatest attraction for foreigners, followed by scenery and people. Sceneries in Kunming have attracted 69% interviewees, and people's friendliness attracted 22%.

※Nice Food

When facing the question “Do you eat local food more or Western food?”, 75% prefer Chinese food, 67% of which often eat local food and only one has never tasted local food.

※A Relaxed City

On weekends or in the evening, 62% of interviewees go to parks or scenic spots, 47% choose to do some shopping, and 28% spend time in bars or cinemas. Others like to visit friends or music practice rooms, to barbecue, or to drink tea and coffee etc.

※ A Lot of Choices for Gifts

When asked “What will you purchase from Kunming as a gift for your families or friends if you intend to?” students from Southeastern Asia have preferences for clothing, tea, wine, herb and electrical appliances, but there are also lovers for flowers, jade and folk crafts.


All the interviewees know at least a little Chinese, and 78% of these foreigners can communicate with others in Chinese. When the reporter interviewed one foreign student in English in Yunnan University, the interviewee smiled and replied: “You can speak in Chinese, because I can understand.”

Nineteen interviewees are puzzled by language barrier, which topped all troubles, especially when shopping, seeing doctors, identifying the public signs and transportations. Some Southeast Asian students with the fluent mandarin told the reporter that Yunnan dialect has been a problem when they are doing grocery shopping and seeing doctors.

※Cultural Differences: Big Headaches

One third of the overseas students regard differences in teaching methods and environment as challenges. Twenty-one percent said that passport and visa have brought concerns to them, and one experienced theft.

※It takes long time to adapt to life in Kunming

Most of them have spent nearly one year to adapt to the life in Kunming, and 25% have gotten used to living in Kunming just in a week, while the rest have spent about 3 months to 1 year for the adaptation.(Reporter:Lynn,editor:Minnie Mao)