Nanchang is the capital of Jiangxi province and has a population of about
2 1/2 million.
The first settlement in this area has been proved to have
existed 5000 years ago. It became the town of Nanchang ("flourishing town of the
south") in the 2nd century B.C. It is referred to in the guidebooks as gray and drab
and certainly it was when we were there in March during "the rainy season". We
had temperatures in the 40's to low 50's. Summers are reported to be "unbearably hot
and humid" and autumn "pleasantly warm and dry".
Photo Archives Over 80 photos of Nanchang city!
Jiangxi Huaxin Hotel
referred to as Jiangxi Hotel or Huaxin Hotel)
Qing Shan Hu Hotel
I thought the food was good. (I did gain a pound while I was gone). Both lunch and
dinner at the Jiangxi Hotel were off the same menu for ordering (had selections also
listed in English). A meal ranged about $5-$8 US in 1996. It looked a lot like chinese food we get
here but tasted a little different, ie the sweet and sour sauce was more like a ketchup
sauce and the noodles were greasier. It did get old eating off the same menu twice a day
for six days, so we finally got our guide to take us out to a few other places. The food
at these places was even better, and less expensive, then the hotel's. The best way to do
this is to offer to pay for the guide's meal. Their meals at the hotel are already paid
for and it's a lot of money for them to eat out. If you're paying they're very happy to go
somewhere else with you.
"There was a small shop next to the Jiangxi hotel lobby that had chinese formula,
baby rice cereal, and apple juice." (JR) There were also snacks such as crackers,
candy, and beverages.
There was a department store half a block away which was quite large, I think at least
3 floors. We also went to the friendship store which was several blocks but within walking
distance. It was even bigger. There was quite a variety of items at both places. I bought
some kids cloths and some souvenirs. I didn't look for formula, diapers, or strollers but
I suspect they were available. One family did see "baby bottles, feeding sets, and
other small baby stuff" (JR). Did any others travelling find these supplies?
We felt very safe while traveling, almost too safe. There was always two guides, the
local one and the national one, and they took care of most things. It would have been fun
to have more experiences where you went out on your own and tried to get by by pointing at
questions and answers in your phrase book. Even carrying nearly $5000 in cash was not as
intimidating as I expected. The Chinese were very friendly, they all crowded around to see
the babies. We had little cards in name badge holders that said: "Adopted Girl from
Welfare Institute" in Chinese. They would read this and give us big smiles and the
thumbs up sign.
International Phone Cards
Advice from a traveling dad: "On our adoption trip and on international
business trips I use the AT&T access number for the particular country and use my
AT&T calling card. It is listed as "not yet available in all areas" of
China but I've used it from Guangzhou, Nanchang, Shanghai, and Beijing. In China,
dial the digit for an outside line, then "10811". It is toll-free as far
as the hotel is concerned. A voice in English prompts you through entering the
number you wish to call, entering your card number, and finally says "thank you for
using AT&T". If you don't have a touch-tone phone you get an AT&T
operator to talk to and complete the call. Rates are much better than the hotel
would give you, you should be able to call AT&T find out the current rates."
Converters/Recharging Video Batteries
This is response by a parent on the a-p-c list to questions on using and recharging
video camera batteries while in China. "Most newer units come with a charger that may
be used on a wide range of voltage. In the US, the voltage is about 120 and in China it is
about 220. Look at the back of your charger. It may say something like "110 - 240
volts, 50 - 60 Hz". If so, you can use it in China without a converter. You must,
however, have a plug adapter to plug it in. A kit with about 4-5 types for use throughout
the world was around $5 at Radio Shack. We only saw one plug type in China and that was
the one the kit prescribed for use there." "If your charger is not made for 220
volts, you must use a converter. There are 2 basic types that I have seen. One is fairly
cheap ($20 ?) and is *not* for use with electronic devices. We used this one for our
"hot pot". The other converter type is over $50 and will power a wider range of
devices." (Is a battery charger considered an "electronic device" ? It
doesn't seem like it would be that sensitive.) "BTW, many hair dryers have a switch
on them for selecting voltage and require only the plug adapter for use in China. But,
don't forget to set them for 220 in China!" (AS)
Sites to Visit
Some of the places visited by families traveling to Nanchang include:
Teng Wang Pavillion - There has been a pavilion at this site on
and off since the Tang Dynasty (roughly 1200 years). The most recent one opened in 1989.
Great view of the town and river from top floor balcony, cultural show, and lots of neat
places to buy souvenirs. There were also some street booths outside where you could
bargain for nick-nacks. They usually went down to less than half so I started at about a
third of the asking price.
Jiangxi Arts & Crafts Center - Porcelain museum and
nearby shop with porcelain at very affordable prices.
People's Park - "This was
marvaleous--just beautiful to walk
around in, lots to see and do. We enjoyed watching the Tai Chi classes and the children
running around were adorable!!" (KB) "Visit the parks, especially People's Park
and August 1 Park. The former has a zoo with pandas. At both you'll see Chinese families
out leading their lives, especially if you visit them on the weekends." (SH)
August First Park - Contains East Lake (Dong Hu) and Hundred
Flowers Island (Baihua Zhou). On the island lies Master Su's Garden, named after the
scholar who laid it out some 1000 years ago.
Gao Village - several miles out in the country. "The people there
were fabulous--so excited that we had come, they welcomed us and were very happy to see
the babies." (KB) Also told later that Ms. Chen felt some of the babies had come from
"Typical" Village Near Nanchang
"Typical" Village Near Nanchang from a visit in March 2002
Ancient Painter's House Click for more info
Farm in the country
Shopping (department store, friendship store, also a bookstore near
the friendship store where we bought chinese tapes, chinese kids books and even chinese
University - one of the local guides taught there and took a group to see
the university and also her room where she lived there.
A Visit to a Nanchang Kindergarten
Street Market - "Go for a walk in people's square. Look around
in shops, observe what's going on in the street, and entertain the masses who'll stare at
Jiangxi Province Children's Hospital
Hopefully if you're visiting here it is just for a tour. But one family
adopting in May 1997 had a daughter who required treatment here. From her dad,
"The Jiangxi Children's Hospital is primitive and a bit scary to those of us used to
western hospitals or standards. Nevertheless, the staff was terrific in all respects and
the medical care was appropriate. The director of the hospital's pediatric intensive care
unit had briefly studied in the States and spoke good English." (HS)
Kinde Jia Kid's Services: Jason Xiao, a
Nanchang resident, will try to answer questions about China or Chinese culture, or about
Nanchang and Jiangxi Province. Along with Steven Hardy, a Jiangxi adoptive father,
he offers products and services for families who have adopted or will adopt children from
Municipal Social Welfare Institute
"Tourist Guide to Nanchang City"
Tourist info (pictures)
"Nanchang, My Home Town"
describes some sites to see.
"Brief Introduction to Jiangxi"
Holt Travel Info (may be useful to
families even if they are using a different agency)
We would love to hear from other families with children from an
orphanage in this area. If you'd like to share any information, ask questions, or post
your child's photo on this site please e-mail me at
any picture to see an enlarged version.