Well-known around China for seafood, scenery and green spaces, Dalian was once voted China’s most liveable city. Its large, international port, close proximity to Russia, Korea and Japan and several reputable universities have led to people from all over the world calling Dalian home.
Clubs, bars and restaurants are plentiful, as are wide open spaces or ‘squares’. A unique feature of one of them, Olympic square located in the CBD, has several soccer fields that host amateur training and competitions. This space is also utilised by a motley crew of global citizens called ‘the Dalian Wolfhounds’ who jauntily practice Gaelic Football techniques before socialising at the nearest bar.
A mammoth maze of underground tunnels and bunkers built during the cold war is now home to an endless array of shops, stalls, markets and eateries selling everything you could imagine (and more!). It is not uncommon to get completely lost and purchase a myriad of things you never knew you needed.
As a mid-tier city on the north-eastern peninsula, Dalian’s air quality is much better than cities of a similar size. Few factories, lush mountains bordering the city and cool sea-breezes make mountain-climbing a popular pastime. The city also changes with each season: cherry blossoms signal the start of spring, beach goers and the the annual beer festival marks the summer months while autumn sees the leaves turn amber before snow arrives in the winter.
The large number of international visitors and international trade opportunities has fueled locals’ appetite for foreign language learning. Language schools and universities are found throughout the city making Dalian an ideal location to both learn a language and/or teach one!
Opportunities abound in this homely city.