China is the most populous country of the world and one of the most ancient civilizations. The world is witnessing a great deal of evidence in China owing to its remarkable economic turnaround that has led to a booming travel industry in the country. The last decade saw the emergence of a new rich consumer class in China due to the opening up of its economy that has made the country one of the biggest attraction for inbound tourism.
Historically travel in china was banned 到會推介 for foreigners under the communist rule. Only a few foreigners were given the permission to visit the country. This situation changed in 1970’s when tourism was promoted as a means of earning foreign exchange. Since then the country has seen a sea change in the travel industry. This year the travel industry will provide it approximately 50 billion dollars in foreign exchange.
Any person visiting china is bound to marvel at its rich history and culture. The most perfect symbol of this great civilization is The Great Wall which is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Built as a defense against the Hun invaders, the wall has evolved into the top tourist attraction which leaves the spectators spell bound with its length and grandness. Ten sections of the wall are currently opened to tourists. It is the only man made structure that is even visible from moon.
The Forbidden City in the middle of Beijing is another important and famous tourist destination. For a very long time from the medieval era to the end of the monarchy in China, it serves as the imperial palace. Because of its rich past, it was granted the “World Heritage Site” status by UNESCO in 1987. The palace also houses an impressive collection of ancient woodworks, considered to be the largest in the world.
Silk Route which is an ancient and famous trade route passes through China and is lined with various murals and sculpture sites. The most famous of these is the Mogao caves. The Yellow river also is a major influence on Chinese culture and an important tourist spot.
Although communist china is officially atheist, the country has had a long Buddhist tradition visible in its various temples and Buddha statue found throughout the country. The largest carved idol of Buddha, Leshan Buddha statue is located in China’s Sichuan province. Shaolin temple of Henan province is an important centre of world famous Chinese martial arts. It is the origin place of Zen Buddhism in China,
China has also a lot of ancient festivals which showcase unique aspects of its culture. The most important of these is the Chinese New Year which marks the beginning of Chinese year. Each year is named after an animal in a 12 year cycle. Other important festivals include March Street celebrated by the Bai people and the Water Sprinkling festival popular in Yunnan province.