Discover the greatest city in China- and the home of Premier English!
Qingdao (sometimes written Tsingtao– its Victorian European spelling, but both are pronounced ‘Chingdow’) is an amazing place! A lively, bustling metropolis sandwiched between the Laoshan National forest with its amazing scenery, and a stunning beach coastline that overlooks Jiaozhou Bay and the Yellow Sea.
A brief history of Qingdao
First settled: estimated 1,400 years ago by the Dongyi people. The town of Jimo, now a district of Qingdao, was founded sometime between 770 and 256 BC- making it older than London, Paris or Berlin.
Development: Qingdao slowly grew into a prominent sea port, with its large natural harbour well placed to provide access the Yellow Sea, with Korea and the East China Sea beyond that. This brought it to the attention of the German Empire, who captured it from the Qing dynasty in 1897. Although it only remained in German hands until 1914, the impression that this short period of colonial rule had on the city is still very apparent- most notably in the large scale beer brewing industry imported by the Germans, and still prospering today. To this day, Tsingtao beer is widely consumed around Asia and the world, and since 1991 the city has hosted China’s only International Beer Festival. The architecture of the old town, such as St. Michael’s Cathedral, also stands as testament to the massive urban planning & expansion program initiated by the German colonists. The sense of history is very prominent in Qingdao, and the shared heritage definitely brings people closer together.
Made history: Control of the port of Qingdao was the cornerstone of Japan’s 1914 ultimatum to Germany, which led to Japan joining the First World War. After a long battle, including the first ever use of aircraft carriers, the Japanese & British captured the city, which was first administered by Japan before returning to Chinese control in 1920. After the war, in response to continued Japanese control of Qingdao, the May 4th Movement began, which is today considered a key turning point in the transformation of China into the modern country it is today.
Population: 9 million.
Industry: Brewing, manufacturing, electronics, fishing and minerals.
Landmarks and features: As mentioned above, the coast at Qingdao is fabulous! Next to the beach is the magnificent May 4th Square, with its iconic red “May Wind” sculpture. With many tourist attractions, from museums to parks, and plenty of outdoor activities such as sailing and climbing in the idyllic Laoshan mountains, there are plenty of things to do whether you’re a local or just visiting!
Technical achievements: Qingdao is home to the Haiwan Bridge, the longest bridge over water in the world. Opening in 2011, and costing almost £1bn, it stretches 26.3 miles across the bay.
A home from home
Qingdao is home to Premier English and our team of enthusiastic young teachers. Drawn from all over the world, whatever your background you’re made to feel at home in Qingdao- it’s the perfect home from home for anyone looking to experience Chinese culture at its most vibrant and exciting, while getting an equal chance to relish modern & historic China. It’s a safe, clean and environmentally minded city, which takes great pride in its clean air & ocean- something that helps it stand out from many Chinese cities. Above all, Qingdao is home to the friendliest, most welcoming hosts imaginable, who will make your every day in their beautiful country a special memory you’ll treasure forever. We love it here, and we think you will too!