China is the superpower of the eastern hemisphere: its name, 中国, literally means "Middle Kingdom". The political hegemony of the country belies a rich history that goes back thousands of years and involves hundreds of ethnic groups, sects, and dynasties vying for control over a gradually expanding land.While Mandarin Chinese is the most widely spoken language in the world thanks to China, locals can easily place their fellow countrymen's origins based on dialects and mannerisms. And there are still plenty of true hidden gems to be found. It can be tough to get around China if you don't speak the language, but I do, so these posts may be more useful than you think!