The Chinese languages are easily some of the most daunting languages to learn for non-native speakers. There are 4 distinct tones, literally hundreds of dialects, and over 3,000 characters in regular use. While all this seems overwhelming; Chinese is quickly becoming one of the most popular second languages world wide.
With approximately 1.3 Billion native speakers, Chinese belongs to the Sino-Tibetan language family and although the various languages all share a common writing system, their spoken forms are mutually unintelligible. The most well known of these outside of China are Mandarin, spoken across China, Taiwan and Singapore and Cantonese, spoken mainly in Hong Kong.
Despite the complexities of the writing system (one of the oldest documented systems) and the subtle but important variations in tone, the Chinese languages do have some structural components that make learning a bit easier. Mainly, they lack genders for nouns and tenses for verbs which makes tackling grammar much easier!
If you have ever wanted to travel to China, improve your resume in the business sector or just connect with nearly 20% of the worlds population; a Chinese language might be for you!