Yanji -> Dalian (via Changchun)

Posted in Travel Log (Asia) at 7:09 am by Benjamin Ross

After several days in Yanji, I am now on my way to Dalian.  In Yanji I met two students who were on “torch tour,” traveling the country, following the Olympic torch, and selling T-shirts.  They invited me to come along with them to Dalian and Shandong, but unfortunately I wasn’t able to get a train ticket to Dalian in time.  I took a bus to Changchun, and will take another bus to Dalian in a few hours, and hopefully catch up with them, and possibly sling T-shirts for a few days through Liaoning and Shandong.

Here are a few random observations about Yanji

-All signs were bilingual, written in Korean and Chinese.  Most of the ethnic Koreans speak both Chinese and Korean as a native language.  From what I could gather (I really wasn’t there long enough to say anything more than a brief over-generalization) the ethnic Koreans seemed (other than their language) to be culturally more or less like the Han, similar to the Mongolians in Inner Mongolia.

-Lots of Korean food.  My own personal favorite was 牛肉汤 (niu2 rou4 tang1), a spicy beef soup which was eaten with a side of rice.  Virtually every meal I had came with a side of kimchi. 

-Lots of dog eating.  I’ll let you know in a more detailed post whether or not I partook.

-In a town called 图门 (tu2 men2), an hour outside of Yanji, you can go to the border, and see North Korea.  I usually don’t get too excited about borders, unless of course it’s a country which I can’t actually go in to check out.  This was the highlight of the trip, and I took a lot of pictures.

-Strange Putonghua accents.  The people in Yanji have a peculiar accent where they have an 儿化音 (over emphasis on the “R” sound, like Beijingers), but they also don’t pronounce sh, ch, and zh, like Southerners.  Thus 没事 is pronounced mei2 sir4.

More to come soon.  I have about 3 hrs to explore Changchun, and then on to Dalian. 


  1. Teya China said,

    July 19, 2008 at 10:56 am

    I think your observations about Koreans in China essentially being like Chinese. I have a Korean student here (from Korea) and she was really upset by one Korean Chinese and her comment was that wile they essentially speaking the same language, they are not Korean. The person has insulted here and did not speak to here with the correct politeness. On a seperate occassion, we also has a discussion in class about whether the Chinese Koreans were Chinese or Koreans (similar to a discussion about if Chinese in America were Chinese or American and how it depended on who you asked–ask the people, ask other Americans, ask other Chinese). I have also had Korean Chinese students, and they do not seem different from the Chinese students either.

  2. Nik United States said,

    July 19, 2008 at 12:54 pm

    Your Facebook friends already know! 😀

  3. Frank United States said,

    July 20, 2008 at 10:59 pm

    too many Ben Ross on facebook, which one?

  4. Sabrina China said,

    July 21, 2008 at 11:40 am

    it’s surprising to hv so much experience in China.I do appreciate ur energy,seems u r more Chinese than some of us,haha,cos i hv never been to those places u mentioned let alone any experience.
    wish u a happy journey in China!

  5. Benjamin Ross China said,

    July 22, 2008 at 9:38 am


    It’s under “Benjamin Ross.” Network is Chicago.

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