China Tourism is one of the most important parts of World Tourism. This is the second country in the world in territory and most populous on Planet Earth with around 1.4 billion inhabitants.
Officially called “The People's Republic of China” is located on the eastern half of the Asian Continent.
The Great Wall of China one of the Wonders of the World
One of the Worlds Earliest Civilizations
One of the world earliest civilizations is today one of the most powerful countries in the world with advance industries and incredibly modern cities, that one couldn’t have imagined just a few decades ago.
There is a lot what to see in China including the two self-governed departments of Hong Kong, a former British colony and Macau a former Portuguese colony on the south China Sea. We visited the area in the early 1980s.
Traveling around is increasingly easier with the years, but unless you spend months of tourism you won’t be able to visit all important places. Since the regular tourist visits the most important sites, I am going to mention here the Top Ten Attractions of China with more descriptions in the coming pages.
The Forbidden City in Beijing the Capital of China
Beijing the Capital of China
The Capital of China, Beijing is without a doubt the center of the nation’s politics, culture and tourist sites. During the years of history Beijing was one of the capitals of the nation, being the others Xian, Luoyang, Kaifeng, Nanjing and Hangzhou.
The most important sites in Beijing are:
Great Wall of China
It was built and rebuilt many times during the fifth century BC and the sixteenth century AD to protect the northern part of the country from attacks by nomadic tribes. The most part of the wall was built during the Ming Dynasty in the years 1368-1644 AD. A visit to the wall is a dream come true for many visitors. We all have learned about the China Wall at some point in our youth, and here we are walking inside the wall.
The Forbidden City
This is the world’s largest palace covering 72 hectares located in the center of Beijing. It was built during the years 1406 to 1420. Twenty-four emperors ruled China from the Forbidden City during close to five centuries. Today it hosts a museum and is by far one of the most visited attractions of China Tourism.
Tiananmen Square one of the main attractions in Beijing
Other important attractions in Beijing are:
Shanghai compares to any great western city
Located on the shores of the East China Sea, Shanghai is the largest metropolitan area of China. It is divided in two sections Pudong and Puxi. Puxi is the oldest part of the city located on the west side of the Huangpu River, while Pudong, located on the east of the river is the modern city with skyscrapers resembling New York or Hong Kong.
Pudong is China’s center commercial and financial hub. Only 20 years ago it was plain farmlands and now you may see an incredible amount of buildings including the symbolic Oriental Pearl Tower, the Shanghai World Financial Center, the Jin Mao Building and the new Shanghai Tower that should be finished in 2014.
More important tourist sites in Shanghai are:
Xian was once the Capital of China
It is located on northwestern China and is the largest city in the area. It was the capital of China for over 1000 years. Two attractions are important here. One is that the city is the beginning or the end of many China River Cruises and second, it is home to the Terracotta Army sculptures.
It is a collection depicting the armies of the First Emperor of China Qin Shi Huang from 221 BC to 206 BC. There are 8,000 soldiers, chariots and horses, many ot them still buried in the pits.
Other important sites in Xian are:
Hong Kong is one of the Top cities in the world
Every one of my readers probably has a few places they visited and will always want to go back. In the case of me and my wife Hong Kong is one of these places.
This city is mind boggling, awe inspiring, fabulous and amazing. I could use a few more adjectives to make my point.
Victoria Harbor, the water between the mainland side of Hong Kong called Kowloon and Hong Kong Island is one the major tourist attractions in the territory.
This is one of the busiest harbors in the world and serves the tourist to better see the city from one of the ferries. A view of the city from Victoria Peak is worth a million.
Guilin Folded Brocade Hill
Guilin is located on the banks of the Li River and is an important stop on the Li River Cruises. The claim to fame of this city are the natural views, the emerald green hills, the clean water, striking caves and stones of many shapes.
It is home to many ethnic minorities including the Zhuang, Yao, Hui, Miao, Mulao, Maonan and Dong. This diversity adds a lot to the area culture.
Other important sites in Guilin China are:
China's renowned Yangtze River
Yangtze River Cruises
The Yangtze is one of the most important rivers of the world in the company of the Nile in Africa and the Amazon in South America. Some of the places visited on this romantic cruise are:
Li River Cruise
A Li River cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo is the highlight of any trip to northeastern Guangxi Province. The awesome scenery of hills, cliffs, caves and farming villages, make this cruise one of the favorite China River Cruises.
Potala Palace in Lhasa Tibet
Known as "The Roof of the World ", has become in the last few decades an important attraction for tourists, climbers and adventurers. In Tibetan, the name means “Land of Gods” and now can be achieved by train and plane from the important cities of China.
Located 130 meters above the Lhasa Valley this 170 meters building is the most important in Tibet. The construction began in 1645 by the Fifth Dalai Lama and completed in the year 1648. It was the residence of all the Dalai Lama until the 14th Dalai Lama had to flee to India due to the China invasion in 1959.
Other important sites to visit in Lhasa are:
The Silk Road from China to the West
Red Lines are land routes and Blue Lines are sea routes
Silk Road in China
The ancient Silk Road has a history of over 2,000 years it started in Xian, then called Chang'an in the east and ended in Rome, Italy on the west.
The old Silk Road passed through Shaanxi, Gansu, Qinghai provinces, Ningxia Hui and Xinjiang Uygur autonomous regions in China and further stretched over the Pamirs, then extending to Central and West Asia.
And finally, the Silk Road connected the east bank of the Mediterranean Sea and Eastern Europe. The Silk Road had the total length of over 2,485 miles and over half of which is within Chinese territory.
Important places and sites along the Silk Road in China:
Nakhi people with their baskets in the Lijiang Region of China
This is an ancient town of more than 1,300 years Located in the Yunnan Province of south China. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site it is home to the Naxi people with a long history. The area is famous for its natural scenery, green vegetation and fresh air.
Other sites of importance in Lijang Yunnan are:
Leshan Giant Buddha in Western China
Leshan Giant Buddha
This is a gigantic statue of Buddha carved on the face of a cliff in Sichuan, Western China. The construction began in the year 713 during the Tang Dynasty and completed in 803 with the effort of thousands of sculptors and regular workers.
The Giant Buddha stands 72 meters high and the fingers are 3 meters long on its enormous resting hands.
The Flag of China was officially adopted on October 1, 1949
The red of the Chinese flag symbolizes the communist revolution, and it's also the traditional color of the people. The large gold star represents communism, while the four smaller stars represent the social classes of the people. In addition, the five stars together reflect the importance placed on the number five in Chinese thought and history.
Map of China and its Provinces
images credits for China Tourism
wall by snowyowls
forbidden city n/a
tiananmen by pauil louis
shanghai by patrick fisher
hong kong by base64
guilin by mr tickle
yang tze by peter morgan
potala by antoine teveraux
silk map by nasa
lijiang by uwe aranas
buddha by ariel steiner
all courtesy of wikimedia commons