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Omeida Chinese Academy

About

Omeida Chinese Academy provides quality Chinese language tuition to students from all over the world. We are located in the beautiful town of Yangshuo, China where you can experience the Chinese culture and spend your free time exploring the rivers and mountains. At Omeida we offer Chinese language programs that meet the needs and goals of students at all levels while providing you with the flexibility to study when you choose. Whether you are joining us for an intensive spoken Chinese program, enjoying a one-on-one tailor made course, or working together with us in the volunteer program, you will find that Omeida provides the perfect opportunity to be immersed in the Chinese language and culture.

Founded
2001
Headquarters

49 LongYue Road
Yangshuo Xian
Guilin Shi
Guangxi Zhuangzuzizhiqu, 541900
China

Reviews

Default avatar
Sylvia
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

10/10 Location

The school is located just outside the "CBD" of Yangshuo by that i mean West St etc. I actually prefer it because food, massages, groceries are 60-80% cheaper than being in West St itself.

9.5/10 Course

The courses are great for beginners, i would say you absorb the content quite quickly and can start practicing it with locals in every day life. The 0.5 stars are missing because you get grouped with people in a classroom environment and they might be stronger than you in some areas like reading and writing but you might be stronger in areas like speaking. It's hard to cater for everyone and they do a pretty good job at allocating students to the right levels.

10/10 Activities

The school holds activities throughout the week. On Wednesday you have cultural workshops, Thursday is social night at a bar then Saturday is a school organised trip. The Saturday trips are awesome. You get to go on hikes, tea plantations, kayaking on the river, bicycle riding through quaint towns, swim in the river etc. They actually take you to spots that tourists don't know about and only locals do. It's reasonable in price too.

9.5/10 Value for money

You definitely get bang for your buck here. I am pretty sure i searched the whole search engine to make sure i was getting the best price possible for the best school i could find. I compared other schools and they were about 30% pricier. The 0.5 stars are lost because i still think for China tuition is on the pricier end. Considering my daily budget on food here is US$5 a day, comparing that to tuition seems like a vast difference.

9/10 Overall

I thoroughly enjoyed my time here. I think it's a really special place, they go out of their way to make things work for you when you have changes in circumstances which i appreciate. Worthwhile doing some study here if you want to build on your Chinese. You meet great people from around the world and have the option of having a local Chinese language partner which is super helpful. I

jane balancing herself in front of a waterfall in plitvice lakes, croatia
Jane
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

For my first time volunteering solo abroad, Omeida sets the bar high. Yangshuo, China is an absolutely gorgeous place surrounded by mountains, combined with both modern amenities and rural lifestyles. I had the absolute pleasure of spending a month volunteering in their marketing department. The work isn't difficult at all, as the marketing manager works with your skillset and is adept at showing you the ropes. After your shift, you're free to do whatever you'd like. Whether it be bike rides along the river, hiking through caves, board game nights, or dancing in Chinese discos, there's always something to do here. There's an eclectic mix of students and volunteers from all over the world, and there's always new friends to make each week.

The staff here is incredibly welcoming, quick to accommodate any requests or take you to their favorite local BBQ spot. Their positive attitudes are incredibly contagious and will always plan fun group activities that make it easy to break the ice. This was incredibly valuable to me as a solo traveler, because I definitely left a family behind in Omeida. The dorms are basic, but there's plenty of storage and space. The food is delicious and family-style, so meals are a different experience each time.

I left Omeida wishing I could stay longer, which is probably the best feeling I could have gotten from this whole experience. One thing I do have to say is that because there's a lot of freedom here, your time is here is what you personally make of it. For me, I had the time of my life.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Yangshuo is a wonderful place to practice your Chinese, as locals here are kind and patient. Omeida creates an environment fit for both serious and casual Chinese learners, so have an idea of your study/volunteering schedule before you come!

Don't feel intimidated by Yangshuo either! Though it's not a major city, it's very tourist and foreigner-friendly (there's plenty of English-speaking restaurants and bars with friendly expats). The map is simple, making it easy to navigate and explore outside the town as well.
Yan
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I have currently been studying for over three months. This Chinese school is fantastic. Not only have I exceeded my objectives, I have also made unforgettable friends, I have learned about Chinese culture and most of all I have spent my time, in Yangshuo along with its astonishing sceneries, having fun. The school is perfectly situated; I can get peace time by climbing mountains, wandering or jogging around the city, and when I want to socialize, I can go the gym, go to KTV’s and bars at night and all the activities that Yangshuo has to offer me. I like studying in Yangshuo because people are very pleasant to talk to and confortable to speak chinese to. Furthermore I always feel safe walking outside at night. The teachers at school are very competent and competent. The subjects of the lessons given are very interesting and useful in daily life. Day by day I have seen myself and my classmates progress and achieve goals that we had far from expected. The staff and teachers are very kind and always willing to speak Mandarin with you. Therefore, I gain every day in confidence, assurance and knowledge. I have five more months to go and I’m sure that I will continue enjoying my time at Omeida.

Agata
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Hello, totally I spent more than half a year at Omeida being a volonteer and learning Chinese. For me it turned to be the most exceptional place for learning Chinese as the education there is very well organised, groups are small (on my level there were just 1-2 students in the class), teachers are very nice, patient, ready to explain and give examples.

I loved the place where the school is located as it's just 10 minutes cycling to the countryside, and 20 minutes to the famous Yulong River. You can explore the place by bicycle or scooter as there are many paths leading to different mountains, and lots of climbing spots.

Volonteering at Omeida is great as well, nice opportunity to teach English and make more friends among Chinese students. They come from different places of China and having conversation class with them can help you to discover China better. And it helps to save you money as well, if you have one volonteering class a day (Monday-Friday) you get free food or free accomodation, if you do two classes you get both.

So I definitely recommend the school for learning or for volonteering, you will love and come back! As I did ;)

Julie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I stayed at Omeida Chinese Academy for one month volunteering in the marketing department. I had a really great time during my stay and I can only recommend Omeida to anyone interested in going to China!

As a volunteer I would work 4 hours in the mornings Monday-Friday, which was perfect as it gave me time to go explore Yangshuo and the beautiful countryside in the afternoons. During my stay my main task was to help prepare Omeida's summer camp program, which included contacting potential schools and designing a pricing flyer.

In return for my work, Omeida would provide free accommodation and food (lunch and dinner). The accommodation was very nice and only a 2 min walk from the school. Every week Omeida organizes social and cultural activities for volunteers and students (BBQ, karaoke, hotpot dinner etc.) which I would usually attend. It's a great opportunity to learn more about Chinese culture and get to know the other students studying at Omeida. The environment at Omeida is really nice, very relaxed and everyone is very friendly!

In the weekends I would usually go explore the surrounding countryside. Yangshuo has some of the most amazing scenery ever! There is lots to do and see, whether its exploring some of the hidden caves and waterfalls, going on bike rides in the countryside or hiking up one of the karst mountains to enjoy a breathtaking view of Yangshuo.

Programs

Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Colin Groves

Colin is a high school chemistry teacher from Vancouver, Canada. He graduated from the University of Victoria in 2007, and has since been teaching in international schools in South Korea, England, China and Bolivia. Recently, Colin took a five-month break from teaching in order to study Mandarin Chinese at Omeida Chinese Academy in Yangshuo, a traveller's destination nestled in the beautiful karst landscape of Guangxi Province, southern China.

Could you describe your program socially and academically?

Headshot

Studying Chinese is definitely a great way to meet friendly and open-minded people from all over the world. As far as the student life at Omeida goes, the summer students are generally livelier and tend to stay for a couple weeks or more. As winter hits, the scene becomes a little quieter and more studious, with overall fewer students, who tend to stay for longer periods of time.

Since I was studying for five months, I decided to only take three classes per day, as I wanted a chance to review what I'd learned and I didn't want to burn myself out, but there is an intensive option for six hours per day or specialized classes to gear students up for the HSK (Chinese proficiency exam). In our classes, we covered plenty of useful grammar structures, vocabulary and common expressions that came up a lot in daily conversation, with writing and reading forming the basis of the homework.

There were also organized weekly trips to nearby mountains and rice terraces, and cultural lessons in cooking, traditional music and calligraphy.

What is one piece of advice you'd give future students traveling with your program?

If you're a beginner in Mandarin, and you're serious about learning the language, it helps a lot to prepare in advance. I had a headstart in my studies because I'd invested a lot of time in the grunt work of learning Chinese characters before I'd even arrived in Yangshuo. After a few weeks into the course, I was really glad that I'd done this, since memorizing characters does become less exciting once the initial thrill of learning Mandarin fades a bit.

Studying aside, when the weather is warm, definitely grab a bike and head to Yulong River to swim and take in the scenery, and if you're into photography, make sure to hike up TV Tower for some great photos when the sun is on the horizon.

Do you feel you got a chance to see the city from a local's perspective?

Yangshuo is a backpacker hotspot and it gets steadily more touristic each year. As someone learning the language, I had a lot of opportunities to make friends with the locals and form language exchanges with the Chinese students learning English at my academy.

West Street

Making friends is easy, but having the willpower to separate yourself from speakers of your native language and focus on spending time with Chinese speakers can be a challenge. West Street has a great bar scene, and there are enough foreigners that, if you're not careful, you could end up never getting a chance to practice your Mandarin.

On the other hand, if you rent a bike and head outwards from the city, you're quickly able to lose yourself in the towering hills, speak with locals who know zero English, and get a much better sense of what rural Chinese day-to-day life is like.

What was the best place you visited outside of your home-base city?

Yunnan Province is definitely one of the most rewarding places I've traveled to in China. There's definitely a slower pace of life in the south; it's much more reminiscent of countries like Laos and Cambodia than the northern provinces.

Cities like Kunming and Dali are surprisingly low-key and peaceful and have a refreshing absence of the ever-present smog throughout much of China.

The trekking in Yunnan is spectacular - Tiger Leaping Gorge is a two-to-three-day hike through some of the most impressive scenery I've ever seen in Asia, and I found it was relatively less-traveled in comparison to other areas of the country.

How has this experience impacted your future? (Personally, professionally, academically, etc.)

Dorm Room

I may end up teaching in China for a few more years, and knowing the language is a really good way to build rapport with Chinese staff at the international schools.

There are a lot of foreigners who come to China and make very little effort to communicate in Chinese; instead they choose to speak in English, and some get visibly frustrated when they're not understood. It makes a great impression to the locals if you've put some time aside to make the extra effort to learn the language.

China is an incredible country to travel, but because many destinations have very few English speakers, getting to some of the smaller towns can be quite daunting. Knowing some basic Chinese gives you a bit of an edge as a traveller, and allows you to get to regions visited by far fewer tourists, for a much more authentic and fulfilling experience.

More Interviews

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Ieva Bukelskyte

Job Title
Marketing Manager
Ieva Bukelskyte comes from a tiny country called Lithuania and at the moment is working in Omeida Chinese Academy as a Marketing Manager. She is a child of nature who loves adventure and everything related with outdoors. She is very excited to be in Yangshuo as it is a perfect place for that, especially for rock-climbing and biking! Her duties at Omeida include welcoming students and making them feel at home as well as spreading the word about Omeida Chinese Academy to the rest of the world.
girl in meadow

What about the future of the industry? How do you think study abroad and international education will change over the next 10 years?

Ieva: I believe there is a bright future for this industry! It’s becoming more and more popular to study abroad and it’s not a surprise as there are so many benefits of living and learning in another country. This experience expands our minds and in general positively changes lives of people.

When you study abroad everyday is a new adventure full of discoveries! I wish everyone could live and study in another country at least once in their lives, even for a short time and I am guaranteed- magic will happen.

What does the future hold for Omeida Chinese Academy - any exciting new programs to share?

Ieva: The list of activities to do in Yangshuo is endless. Therefore we decided to combine learning Chinese language with Tai Chi practice or rock-climbing for example. We believe it will be a very fulfilling experience for our students: not only to learn Chinese but also develop and improve their skills of Tai Chi or rock-climbing.

yangshuo rock climbing

For example, did you know that Yangshuo is fast becoming the rock climbing Mecca of Asia?

What was your favorite traveling experience?

Ieva: It is very hard to choose one, as the list is endless. But one of the most favorite would be hitch-hiking to Morocco from Spain and meeting a local student in Tanger, who then invited us to visit and stay with his family in another town called Tetouen. We spent a night in his place and it was unbelievable.

His family opened not only their arms, but their hearts to us, strangers from another part of the world. We cooked food together, drank tea, shared stories with each other. His family trusted us; wanted to share everything they have, even though they did not have a lot themselves. They even gave us gifts! Moroccan hospitality at its best! World IS a beautiful place, let’s just not be afraid to embrace it.

people on beach

What unique qualities does your company possess?

Ieva: Omeida Chinese Academy is like a big family. There is this very warm and positive atmosphere around the school, everyone is smiley and happy, willing to help each other, share stories and laughs. Students tell me that they never feel alone here!

We (Chinese teachers and other staff) do many outdoor activities together with students. Last weekend for example we went camping to this huge cave that has a mind blowing view to the Limestone Mountains, we made a fire, sang songs and cooked food. Unforgettable memories for sure!

More Interviews