This is within walking distance of the city’s most famous nightlife and shopping districts before heading off to the immersive environment of Chengde to complete your course.
Chinese Immersion Shanghai Program
Shanghai & Chengde – Polar Opposites
Maximum language progression
Explore China off the tourist-trail
Overcome cultural challenges
Flexible duration and starting dates
Full 24/7 support in both locations
Your teachers will encourage you to start speaking Mandarin from Day One, whatever your level.
Support staff are also on hand to help you settle into daily life in China – from showing you the cheapest cocktail bars on our Wednesday night outings in Shanghai, to helping you open a Chinese bank account.
Maximum Language Progress
Confidence: In Shanghai we help you to overcome inevitable language and cultural barriers – so that you can jump right into life here. Full Immersion: In Chengde no-one speaks English. That means speaking and hearing Mandarin Chinese 24/7.
Survival Kits Included
Transport: Private airport pick-up and trains between Shanghai and Chengde trains are included. Paperwork: We will help you arrange your SIM card, bank account etc. 24/7 emergency help: We are only a phone call away if you need us.
A Team You Can Trust
Professional teachers: All teachers in both cities are fully-qualified with teaching degrees and years of classroom experience. Established home-stay network: Your home-from-home. Full support: Staff on hand to help you settle into life in their city.
The Best Of Both Worlds
Shanghai: Meet other Chinese students from around the world at our central location, and explore this buzzing metropolis together. Chengde: Visit ancient palaces and temples in the surrounding mountains and experience a slower pace of life in China’s rural heartlands.
Chinese Immersion Shanghai Program
The minimum duration for an Immersion Program is 4 weeks, of which you will spend 2 weeks in Shanghai, then 2 weeks in Chengde.
However, you can sign up for anything from a 4 week to a 24 week program.
After your experience in Shanghai you will then take the train to the city of Chengde, China’s old Imperial Summer Capital, nestled in the mountains of Hebei province.
There is certainly no expat community or import supermarket in Chengde – this is real, authentic China, where you will need to draw on everything you’ve learned so far.
The second half of your language program will be all about complete immersion – studying in 1-on-1 Mandarin classes, and speaking Chinese to everyone you meet.
VISA NOTE – Be aware what visa you get given and how many days it applies for alongside number of entries. Students generally, may only stay for 180 days per entry. In case you are looking for a longer course, you are of course very welcome to apply for a second visa and return to the school to continue your studies.
Train Ticket from Shanghai to Chengde – We will arrange and book your transport from Shanghai to Chengde by train.
Chengde Train Station Pick-up – We will organise for you to be picked up from Chengde train station and taken to your accommodation to make the last part of your journey as east as possible!
Ticket for Chengde Mountain Resort – Explore one of Chengde’s most famous attractions: the Mountain Resort with an entrance ticket provided by LTL.
Chinese Culture Class – Get a taste of Chinese culture by taking part in one free class, some example options are a calligraphy class or Kung Fu class.
+7,400 / 2 wks
+9,200 / 2 wks
Chinese Immersion Program Start Dates
We ask that complete beginners who want to do the Standard Immersion Program start on one of our official Small Group start dates, as listed below.
If you already have some knowledge of Mandarin Chinese, then you are welcome to start your Immersion Program on any Monday of the year.
Official start dates are:
26 April 2021
17 May 2021
07 June 2021
28 June 2021
12 July 2021
26 July 2021
09 August 2021
23 August 2021
13 September 2021
04 October 2021
01 November 2021
13 December 2021
03 January 2022
24 January 2022
14 February 2022
07 March 2022
28 March 2022
18 April 2022
16 May 2022
06 June 2022
27 June 2022
11 July 2022
25 July 2022
08 August 2022
22 August 2022
12 September 2022
17 October 2022
07 November 2022
28 November 2022
19 December 2022
What’s Living in Chengde Like – Daniel’s Experience
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do you have classes appropriate for my level?
You will have Small Group classes at the Shanghai School if you opt for either the Standard, Intensive or Culture Immersion Programs. If you’re a complete beginner, then classes begin at least once a month on the official start dates (see above). If you have studied Chinese before, then you will have a personal language assessment with our Director of Studies before your arrival, based on which we will assign you to the appropriate existing group.
If you are already at approximately HSK 3 level or beyond, then we cannot guarantee that there will be an appropriate Small Group class for your level. We recommend that you opt for the Individual Immersion program, where you will follow a personalised learning plan in both Shanghai and Chengde.
How much Chinese will I learn?
If you’re willing to work hard in class, do your homework, and use every available opportunity to practice your spoken Chinese when out and about, then you can make huge progress in just a matter of weeks.
From experience, students who stay in an LTL homestay with a local family will gain oral fluency more quickly than those who live with other English-speaking foreigners. Your time studying in Chengde will also give you considerable advantage over other Chinese learners in more international cities, since you will be speaking Mandarin with everyone you come across in your daily life. Chengde is much smaller than even the lesser known cities you might go travelling to in China such as Xi’an, Chongqing, Qingdao etc. It’s not to be confused with the larger city Chengdu famed for being the home of China’s pandas. There are also a whole host of local Chinese-speaking sports clubs and societies in Chengde (hiking, skiing, fitness, football) which are a great idea to join, even if you’re not sporty, since that’s an instant source of Chinese-speaking friends!
As a general guideline, a motivated student on the Standard Immersion program arriving as a complete beginner could expect to reach at least HSK 2 level after 8 weeks. The same student on the Intensive program may well reach HSK 3 level in the same number of weeks.
How much support will I get in Shanghai / Chengde?
We have designed this program to make sure that you are eased as gently as possible into your Chinese Immersion experience. Before you arrive, you will be in constant contact with your Student Advisor, who will help you choose the most suitable program, support your visa application, and put you in touch with current or past students via our active WeChat student community.
On arrival you will be picked up from Shanghai airport by our private LTL driver and taken directly to your home-stay, the LTL Shared Apartments or your own private accommodation. So there’s no need to haggle with airport taxi drivers or get lost in a strange city! If you’ve booked accommodation with us, you’ll be met by your host family / the landlord of the Shared Apartments and shown around your new home. On this first day you will also receive your Shanghai Survival Kit.
In your first week at the Shanghai school we will help you set up your mobile SIM card, open a Chinese bank account and arrange your free bike rental. You’ll quickly get to know your fellow LTL students thanks to the jam-packed LTL Shanghai Social Calendar – including weekly group dinners and weekend day trips. Your Student Advisor will also always be on hand around the school if you have specific questions about your program or life in Shanghai.
By the time you get to Chengde you should have got to grips with the basics of day-to-day life in China, but you will still have access to support and advice from our local Chengde Immersion Specialist. Depending on your preferences you’ll be put in contact with local people via sports clubs or other social outings.
Of course, 24/7 emergency support is also included in both cities– so if you need our help, we’re only a phone call away.
How can I apply?
Simply click here to contact a Student Advisor directly!
Can I choose what aspects of Chinese I want to study?
If you have Small Group classes at the Shanghai school, then they will follow the LTL Mandarin School curriculum. However, for your 1-on-1 classes you can request certain topics that interest you personally, you can prepare for a particular exam, or spend the time perfecting your tones. Once you have started the 1-on-1 program, your teacher will always be open to adapting lessons to your needs and preferences.
"Chengde is very small in comparison to Beijing. Chengde is the place to go if you want to meet the "real China" beyond the internationalized version in Beijing. Alongside the studying during the week, you’ll have good fun."
Almost no-one speaks English in Chengde. So it's a great opportunity to get your speaking and listening up to scratch. I found that all my teachers were really helpful, and you might end up keeping in touch when you leave too.
I chose to go to Chengde for a really new and different experience. It is perfect if you want to really focus on your Chinese and get away from all those distractions. In Chengde my speed of learning was much faster!
I’m Max, a high school graduate from Germany taking a gap year before starting university. I decided to go to China to discover a new culture and at the same time learn a new language. Since I wanted to achieve some major progress and be able to communicate effortlessly afterwards, I decided to stay at least half a year in China and chose the “Intensive Immersion Program” to make the most out of my stay.
Having set a clear goal, I decided to take the intensive course with 6 hours of classes per day. I also lived in a homestay which added some more valuable time of Chinese surrounding.
Looking back it was definitely my time in Chengde and the one-on-one classes which were responsible for my fast progress. Chengde is quite rural compared to the bigger east coast cities and the amount of foreigners is at an absolute minimum which is why it creates such a perfect learning environment.
The pace of life is slower, for example your homestay has time to take you out for dinner regularly, people approach you more openly and if you want to have social interactions it will most likely only be possible with Chinese. Chengde is the place to go if you want to meet the “real China” beyond the internationalized version in big cities.
You need to be creative in Winter in Chengde, it’s cold and you must brave the weather. However, if you are up for football in minus temperatures you will keep yourself busy! Alongside the studying during the week, you’ll have good fun in Chengde.
In general, I loved my time in China and I can only recommend to anyone to visit this country of the future. And yes, with some commitment and time you are definitely able to master the Chinese language.
Fushu with her friends
Chengde is a small city, but it’s great for those who like to hike and go on long works. It’s very pretty and the surrounding area is very mountainous. I’d recommend anyone thinking about taking the Chengde program to think about if you’d be happy having a simple daily routine. There are only usually a handful of LTL students doing the program at the same time, and as the main aim is to speak Chinese the whole time you don’t hang out with the other students as much as in the other cities. If you’re not sure about this aspect, speak to LTL when you’re booking.
Most students sign up to the gym or go to the big park after to class. There aren’t so many places to visit in the inner city, but there are lots of places to visit on the outskirts, beautiful temples and mountains. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you’d like when it comes to the homestay matching. Most of the students like to stay near the city centre, close to the big park, malls and places to eat.
Almost no-one speaks English in Chengde. So it’s a great opportunity to get your speaking and listening up to scratch. Think about how many hours you’d like to study for each day, as it can feel pretty intense. But
So far, I’ve studied at LTL for 5 months already, and I still have a few weeks left. LTL’s classes are small and flexible, and they really help the teachers and students interact with each other much more than the classes at Chinese universities allow.
I studied a mixture of group and individual classes, it was an intensive course with 6 hours of classes per day. It was tiring, but really worth it.
I chose to go to Chengde for a really new and different experience. It’s a small city, with not very many bars, clubs, foreigners, or Western restaurants. It is perfect if you want to really focus on your Chinese and get away from all those distractions. In Chengde my speed of learning was much faster!
My Chinese home stay family were great help with my speaking, they often corrected my tones and grammar. I’d really recommend learning Chinese with LTL in this way!