Lost in Engrish Translation

Since this marks the end of my time here in mainland China, I can’t
help but post some of the funniest Lost in Engrish Translation signs I’ve come across while traveling here. In no way do I mean any disrespect from posting these (although you would think they would simply ask someone if their sign makes any sense or if it is just plain bad English before they have it made) but since China blocked my blog for almost thirty days, it is my way of saying thank you. To be fair though, not all of these were found in China but the majority of them were. A few of these Lost in Engrish Translation signs you may have seen already in my posts but many of them you have not. Enjoy…

Lost in Engrish Translation

Olympic Stadium - Lost in Engrish Translation

Found in the Olympic Stadium… anyone need to take the Love Elevator?

Lost in Engrish Translation Signs

What a shame… Stabling while I occupy is my favorite thing to do!

Lost in Engrish Translation Signs

Outside the door of our guesthouse in Mongolia. We stayed out after midnight every night in defiance.

Lost in Engrish Translation Signs - Bang-Yu BandAids...

Bang-Yu. It means BandAid in Mongolian…

Lost in Engrish Translation Signs - Sounds a bit difficult...

Ah, on second thought, I think I’ll just stay home. Could this look any more confusing?

No smoking on the bed

In the room is OK though….

Tourist friendly signs in China

Because that’s what tourists need… a well-mannered imagination

Lost in Engrish Translation Signs

Seriously. This was the menu.

I thought I was in China? Weird.

Apparently there is a Chinatown in China. How fitting.

Falling Stairs Beware

Are they falling?


Tuna Spaghetti = Delicious

Why not throw in sardines, jalapenos and some cold fish head too while your at it.

And what?

Can’t wait to go for my foot and body and oil and spa massage

Mind your step

Mind Your Business

The flavour of Sunshine?

Mmmm, I just can’t decide between the butter chocolate yam mud or the flavour of sunshine. Mud or Sunshine… tough decision.

Tourists get off? Where? What?

Sounds dirty. Is that what the admission ticket is for?

No Striding on the Great Wall

Found on the Great Wall of China. Striding must be a common occurrence here.

And no Smoking on the Great Wall


Aisa food in Asia?

Aisa Food in Asia.  They did such a great job with the rest of the menu….


Steamed Fish Head

At least they tried their best with this menu. The Steamed Fish Head sounds delicious.

The China No Spitting sign

China Keepin it Classy

Anyone in the mood for this?

How ironic! I had actually been in the mood that day to clean a public bathroom. Here was my chance!

My favorite park signs

I am at a loss. I thought we spoke the same language but I truly have no idea what this means.

Lost in Translation!

And if its not civilized?

Don't water on what?

Thanks for the tip


Yes, plants do make air gurified

Helpful tip

Once again, I am at a loss…

Urine cow pill?

“Ah, yeah. I’d like to put in an order for some Cold Noodle with a side of Urine Cow Pill please”

Nothing like a little variety!

Would you like your Chicken Casserole with powder, with with or just plain?

Interesting, I've never tried an entire restaurant before...so cheap too

Finally a choice of dishes! ‘Yes, I’ll take some Fried Dumplings with a side of Taipei Restaurants’

I don't get it?

It sounds impressive, official and confusing all at the same time

Classic is the keyword

Mmmm, Cheese Lobster flavor. Is it really a ‘Classic’ Great Taste? I just can’t understand why Lay’s doesn’t sell these back home.

Yes, I love monkeys

Unless of course they want your camera, your bottled water or anything else they want to grab off of you.

AKA, don't jump off the cliff here please.

So noted….

Well written... I understand completely

Firing in the second fireproof area is OK though…

Sleeping under the stars...

Undertaking external accommodation was exactly what I was needing at the time.

Beware of Monkeys

Beware of Monkeys. It’s the only rule. Got it.

Git your ice cold drinks folks!

I’m sorry, what kind of cold drinks did you say you had?!?

Cornflex, Mussle and Popeye

Nothing like some Cornflex in the morning with a side of Mussle Curd Fruits




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13 Comments... Join the conversation below

  • Rosanne Losee December 30, 2011, 7:54 pm


  • Rosanne Losee December 30, 2011, 7:55 pm

    My co-worker, Amrita and I laughed at your sign-posting, Rory. They do try with the English, don’t they?? 😉

    • Rory December 31, 2011, 3:59 am

      Yes, they do try… they just don’t get too many 2nd opinions on it though

  • Robyn December 31, 2011, 3:31 pm

    RORS!!!!!! that was JUST HILARIOUS!!!! i laughed so hard i woke everyone up in the house!! I could also just picture you reading them out and your reactions! freaking awesome!!! good job xxx

    • Rory January 2, 2012, 7:44 am

      I think we should have tried the cornflex! I’m truly hoping SE Asia will be just as ridiculous…

  • Trine Vik January 1, 2012, 10:27 am

    Can I have your e-mail address?

  • Stacey Clark January 8, 2012, 5:33 pm

    Hey it’s Matt. Those signs were freaking AWESOME. I hope you got a cold glass of Cock to wash down your cow urine pill. Those pills are hard to swallow especially when you have altitude sickness.
    I am ripping off some of your pictures for my FB page. Again, they are awesome!!.

    Matt and Stacey

    • Rory January 9, 2012, 2:46 am

      Too funny…. and don’t worry… more ‘Engrish’ to follow as I”m going through India and SE Asia. Sometimes you just want to sit them down and tell them that their menu makes absolutely no sense but then you’d be ruining it for the next traveller!

      Hope ya’ll are doing well and had great New Years!

  • John Futrelle January 8, 2012, 7:43 pm

    Holy crap did you try the cheese lobster Lay’s?

    • Rory January 9, 2012, 2:51 am

      What’s Up John! Yes, of course I tried them, how could you not? Cheese Lobster flavor, naturally delicious! No, they were gross. They also have Magic Masala flavor, Hot and Sour Fish Soup, Little Tomato, Blueberry, Numb and Spicy Hot Pot and of course American Classic….

  • Kristine February 15, 2013, 2:31 am

    LMAO- came across your site from an article in my teacher union magazine…of all places.
    Thank you so much for the many laughs I had while reading these.
    The potato chips are something I am familiar with…England has some interesting ones.
    I am curious about your research leading up to this world tour.

    • Rory February 16, 2013, 2:00 pm

      Haha, I’m not sure how my blog ended up in your teacher union magazine but that’s awesome! Must be a super cool magazine:) By research, are you referring mainly to the pre-trip planning? Or how I decided on traveling to the countries I chose? No doubt any world trip will involve a lot of planning… are you looking to travel soon?

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