Attractions in China
Among the sparkly new sports centres, shopping malls and hotels built for the 2008 Olympic Games, you’ll find the traditional elements of Beijing that continue to draw people to the city. Tiananmen Square is a focal point, home to the Great Hall of the People, China's parliament, the Mao Zedong Memorial Hall, where the body of Chairman Mao rests, and the Monument to the People's Heroes, an obelisk depicting major events of the revolution.
Get swept up in China’s richest city, complete with futuristic skyscrapers, glitzy bars and restaurants, hotels, and shopping malls. Hundreds of thousands of tourists from all over the world throng to Shanghai to see for themselves its great economic impulse, distinctive attractions and to savour its unique blend of Eastern and Western cultures. Head to the Yu Gardens and Bazaar for a spot the traditional, where souvenir shops and eating-houses are packed together in brightly coloured alleys.
Xi’an is home to the famous Terracotta Warriors and the Tomb of Emperor Qin. Xi’an was once the capital of China so there is plenty of history to get wrapped up in here. You should also pay a visit to the Bell Tower, which marks the beginning of the Silk Road, and the Tang Murals in the Shaanxi Museum of History.
Natural scenery is in abundance in Guilin, which lies on the Li River banks. The city is also home to many ethnic minorities such as the Zhuang, Yao, Hui, Maio, Mulao, Maonan and Dong, adding cultural flair and traditional flavour. While you’re in Guilin venture up one of the many hills – Brocade, Fubo or Elephant Trunk Hill among others to enjoy the view.
The Yangtze River is the world’s third largest after the Nile and the Amazon, snaking from the west, through mountains and cities, to the East China Sea a full 6,300 km later. Visit the great number of sites and cities along its banks including Chongqing City, Fengdu, Wanxian, Shennong Streem, Three Gorges, Three Gorges Dam, Yichang city and Wuhan city.
The Jiuzhaigou Valley is a UNSECO natural heritage site named for the nine Tibetan villages that are located there. Visitors are provided with picturesque scenery, endangered wildlife and an insight into the life of the locals who have made the valley their home. Wild pandas number less than 20 in this region making the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base in Chengdu so important. The base is open to visitors and houses over 60 pandas, nearly all born and bred in the base.
Lijiang, a UNESCO cultural heritage site, is located in southern China. It’s an ancient town inhabited by the Naxi people, with a history goes back over 1,300 years. The scenery is picturesque, from the towering Jade Dragon Snow Mountain to Tiger Leaping Gorge. According to legend this is the spot where a tiger leapt over the narrowest part of the gorge (still 25 m wide) to escape a hunter. Take a step back in time in Lijiang.
Zhangjiajie is slowly moving up the ranks as a visitor hotspot. The jewel in its crown is the Wulingyuan Scenic Area, a world heritage site due to its lush greenery, unique sandstone pillar formations, crystal clear waters, and a diverse range of wildlife including some endangered species. Sights to see include the Zhangjiajie Forest Park, Suoxi Vale, and Tianzi Mountain.
The ancient Silk Road has a history of over 2,000 years and played a major part in trading and the exchange of ideas in early times. The old Silk Road started from Xian in the east and extended to Rome, Italy in the west, and earns its name from the extensive Chinese silk trade (the main reason for which the road was created). The Silk Road had a total length of over 8,000 km, with over half within Chinese territory. There is much to see and learn along the length of this historic Road.
*The Small Print
We’ve tried to make this destination guide as accurate as possible but please double check the essentials like visas, health and safety, airport information etc with the relevant authorities before you travel. STA Travel takes no responsibility for loss, injury or inconvenience caused as a result of this guide. All prices listed are in the currency of the destination, unless otherwise stated.