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Enjoy mountains and rivers in historic city

06-21-2010 17:22 BJT

Wenzhou, a historic coastal city in southeast China, is a fascinating place to visit.

Yandang Mountains. 
Yandang Mountains.(File photo)

Its history can be dated back to the Neolithic Age, when a primitive people lived there and made pottery named ou - why it was called Dong'ou in ancient times.

In the first year of Taining in the eastern Jin Dynasty (323 AD), the city of Wenzhou was built. Due to its southern location the city has a mild climate throughout the year and earned the name "Wenzhou" because "Wen" in Chinese, means "warm and mild."

The city has a total area of 11,784 sq m, about one third that of Switzerland. According to estimates in 2008, the population was 7.99 million, the biggest in Zhejiang province.

In the past, Wenzhou was famous for its handicraft industry. Delicate blue china was born there. During the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279), Wenzhou was opened up to foreign countries as a trade port.

Today Wenzhou is known for business. But it is not simply a commercial city. It also has a rich culture and is the hometown of Nanxi Opera - the earliest form of Chinese opera.

Several distinguished people hail from the area, such as the doctor Chen Yuanze in the Post Song Dynasty, the painter Huang Gongwang in the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), and the educator Xia Nai in modern times.

Yandang Mountains

Located in Leqing county of Wenzhou city, the Yandang Mountains are 68 km from the city center.

There is a lake on the top of the mountain where wild geese flying to the warm south come to spend their winters. This is how the mountain got its name "Yandang" -meaning the place where wild geese live.

Yandang Mountains cover a total area of 450 sq km. Regarded by scientists as a natural museum of great historic and scientific significance, the mountains are divided into eight scenic areas, among which the most famous are the Three Wonders: the Spiritual Peaks (Ling Feng), the Spiritual Rocks (Ling Yan) and the Big Dragon Waterfall (Da Long Qiu).

Once upon a time, someone asked an old poet who had visited Yandang Mountains many times, "How would you compare Yandang to the Yellow Mountains?" The old poet replied: "Both have their wonders, the Yellow Mountains are magnificent and wondrous, while Yandang Mountains are spiritual and wondrous, but you must visit them yourself to understand what I mean."

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