The Yellow River rolls forward endlessly like a huge golden dragon. Crossing central China, the river gives rise to Chinese civilization over thousands of years and symbolizes the spirit and strength of the Chinese people. Touring along the Yellow River, travelers can not only enjoy the beautiful canyons, lakes and riverside scenery of this monumental river, but also have the opportunity to visit many famous sites, experiencing the unique local customs and studying the history of China.
The Liujia Gorge
Located in Yongjing county is the Liujia Gorge on the Yellow River. Steep cliffs and towering mountains rise on either side of the river, and manifest their spectacular grandeur. It was there that a key water conservancy project was completed in 1974, for the purposes of irrigation, navigation, flood control, electric energy production, and aquatic resources utilization. With a 147-meter-high and 840-meter-long dam, the Liujia Gorge Reservoir stores 5.7 billion cubic meters of water, and its water area covers 130 square kilometers. As the first power plant built on the upper reaches of the Yellow River, the Liujia Gorge Hydroelectric Power Plant has a capacity of 1.2 million kw, and uses five units of gigantic water turbogenerators to generate 5.7 billion kwh of electricity each year.
Hukou Waterfall on the Yellow River
One hundred and sixty-five kilometers to the west of Linfen is the HuKou Waterfall, Chinas second largest waterfall, next to the Huangguoshu Waterfall in Guizhou Province. In Hukou the Yellow River has formed a big gully, thirty meters wide and fifty meters deep. When the turbulent Yellow River water rushes to the bully, which forces the river into a narrow passage. The water flow speeds up and suddenly falls down into the gully thrity meters below. The roaring splashes are breathtakingly beautiful. The width of the fall is generally thirty meters, but during tide period it may reach one kilometer
The Dongyue Temple is located 2 km to the east of Puxian County Seat, 65 km northwest of Linfen, Shanxi Province. It is a large and magnificent palace complex. The main temple and more than 60 surrounding buildings occupy an area of ten thousand square meters.
Construction of the Dongyue Temple was started during the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907 AD). The Main Hall was built in 1318 AD. The Hall is square shaped with corridors around the hall. The roof of the hall is decorated with animal shaped yellow and blue colored glaze tiles. Inside the hall stand scuptures.
Under the Main Hall below the ground level, one can find the Hell. It consists of 18 caves representing 18 layers of the hell. There are 120 life size statues, telling stories of the Hell. Those sculptures, carved in the Ming Dynasty ( 1368 - 1644 AD), display magnificent artistic craftsmanship, and are rarely found in any other places
Guandi Temple, or Temple of the God of War, stands in the west of Xiezhou County, Yuncheng City. This imperial palace style building was built honoring Guan Yu, a celebrated general during the period of the Three Kingdoms (220 - 280 AD). Throughout China, there are numerous temples worshipping Guan Yu, but this one is the largest of the same kind in the country.
This temple was built in 589 in the Sui Dynasty (581 -618 AD) and rebuilt in the Qing Dynasty on the model of an imperial palace. The temple consists of the Northern Garden and the Southern Garden. The Northern Garden is composed of the front yard and the rear yard with halls and mansions, forming a unique architectural complex.
The Southern Garden was modeled on the place where Guan Yu and his two brothers - Liu
Bei and Zhang Fei - vowed to establish life time brotherhood friendship.
Gegen Tala in Dorbod Qi
Gegen Tala Grassland, located in Dorbod Qi, is 150 kilometers from Hohhot. because of its excellent natural conditions, this place is an ideal grazing land. Now it has been turned into a tourist attraction area. Here tourists can experience the life of a herdsman, enjoying the performance of the local people, watching traditional Mongolian sport events, and tasting Mongolian cuisine. They can also visit the local people in their yurts, attending their wedding ceremony and visiting the former residential place of the old Dorbod Qi Lords.
The Mausoleum of Genghis Khan
Genghis Khan (1162--1227) was a powerful Mongolian leader. It was he who unified all the Mongolian tribes as a tough politician and an outstanding military strategist at the end of the 12th century.
His mausoleum is situated in the Ejin Horo Banner of the Ih Ju Meng Prefecture. Its main structure consists of three connected halls in the shape of Mongolian yurts.With their eaves inlaid with golden and blue glazed tiles, the halls look resplendent and magnificent.
The central hall is primarily a place for memorial services, and has a huge statue of Genghis Khan. It is a Mongolian convention that people go to the mausoleum to attend a grand memorial ceremony, and make sacrificial offerings on the 17th of the third lunar month.
Sanmen Gorge Reservoir
Sanmen Gorge Reservoir is located 20 kilometers northeast of Sanmenxia City. There is a dam on the Yellow River, which is 106 meters high, and 908 meters long. The building of the dam serves to protect the nearby area from flooding and to make full use of the water resources of the yellow River. Meanwhile the building of the dam has played an important role in the development of the economy, generating of electricity and the building of irrigation system in this area. This section of the Yellow River used to be a narrow and dangerous gorge, and now it has become a big reservoir. It is now also a tourist attraction spot.
Tombs Of Guo State Amd Pits Of Chariots And Horses
The tombs and pits are in Mt. Shangchun, north of Sanmenxia. Since the 50s, 234 tombs and 4 pits with chariots and horses have been excavated. As among the sacrificial objects found in the tombs were also two bronze dagger-axes with the inscrption of " The dagger- axe of Prince Yuan Tu of the Guo State", it is therefore identified that the tombs and pits belong to the Guo State, another name for the Zhou Dynasty (1066 - 256 BC). A huge house was built for protecting No. 1727 pit aftr it was excavated.This pit is rectangular in shape, 15. 1 meters long, 3.82 meters wide and 4.1 meters deep, with 5 chariots and 10 horses in it. The chariots with complete compartments, wheels and shafts, are orderly arranged in rows with two horses for each. All these historic relics are of great importance for the study of the history of the Warring State Period,the burial and sacrificial system of the Guo State as well as the structure of ancient chariots.
The grottoes are all in the cliffs along both banks of the Yi River, 13 kilometers south of the city of Luoyang. The idea of cutting grottoes and carving stone statues in them was developed in the Northern Wei Dynasty (496 AD), and the contruction of them lasted more than 400 years covering dynasties of Northern Wei, Eastern Wei, Western Wei,Northern Qi, Northern Zhou, Sui, Tang, and Northern Song. Well preserved now are more than 1000 stone statues in over 2100 grottoes in addition to 3600 inscribed stone tablets and 43 Buddhist pagodas. As one of the three great Buddhist treasures, the Buddhist statues in Longmen Grottoes are refinedly carved and beautifully shaped, all presenting a vivid appearance of a dignified manner and delicate looks.The Buddhist statues in Longmen Grottoes are an embodiment of a peculiar and extraordinary style of sculpture of Buddhist statues of the Chinese people, which also occupies a very important place in the Chinese art of sculpture.
An Imperial Street Of Song Capital
Following the architecture of the Song Dynasty the Imperial Street of the Song Capital was painstakingly designed and constructed in 1985. The street, 40 meters wide and 400 meters long, is flanked by a variety of classic storied buildings, pavilions and other constructions, typical of the style of the Song Dynasty. But most of these ancient style buildings now serve as clothing stores, provisions shops, local flavour snack shops, restaurants, department stores, etc. the majority of which are named after the corresponding names used in the Song Dynasty, and the salesmen, saleswomen, waiters and waitresses working in these places are all wearing ancient Song Dynasty costumes. On the west side at the north end of the street erects the Fanluo Hotel which is a complex structure composed of 5 ancient storied buildings on the south, north, east and west and in the center, forming the pattern of a rose. Opposite to the Fanluo Hotel is the Dragon Pavilion Lake which is decorated by petite pavilions and bridges on it, really a resort for tourists.
Located in the center of Jinan, Baotu Spring is the most famous of the 72 major springs in the city. Baotu Spring's pool is rectangular in shape, 30 meters long and 20 meters wide, and is encircled by stone balustrades. The spring gushes out in three fountains bubbling like boiling water about a foot high. Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty (1644--1911), on an inspection tour to the south, stopped here and tasted the water of the spring. He was so pleased that he conferred on it the title "First Spring Under Heaven".
To the east of the temple is Confrcius' house. If was once Confueius' eldest grandson;s Yamen and named Lord Yansheng's Residence. During the Han Dynasty Emperor Gao Zu , named Liu Bang, made offerings at Confucius' tomb in the highest degree.The emperor also conferred on Confucius' ninth generation direct grandson and his sons after him an official post supervising sacrifices to Confucius on behalf of the country . In the course of history, many titles were conferred on Confucius and his descendants. The title of Yansheng was given to his descendant in the Song Dynasty. In the 10 th year of the Ming Hong Wu reign an independent Residence of Lord Yansheng was set up, with the Yamen in the front and the domestic household at the back . It has 480 rooms and houses many files and relics.
In December,1994 The Confucius Temple, Residence and Confucian Woods was listed in the Chronology of Recognition of World Heritages in China.
In December,1987 The Mount Taishan was listed in the Chronology of Recognition of World Heritages in China.
Towering in the middle of Shandong Province, Mount Taishan is oneof China's most famous scenic spots and regarded asthe first of thefive sacred mountains in ancientChina for its majesty and beauty. It covers a total area of 426 km, and its summit, the Jade Emperor Peak, rises 1,545 meters above sea level. In China's history many emperors ascended Mount Taishan to hold memorial ceremonies as an expression of their gratefulness to heaven on their success in establishing a new dynasty. For many centuries, Buddhism and Taoism flourished in the mountain, therefore many temples and nunneries were built. Now historical sites and numerous stone-carved inscription can be found all over the area, such as, Wangmu Pool (the Heavenly Queen Pool), Hongmen Palace (the Red Gate Palace), Nantian Gate (the South Gate to Heaven), and Bixia Temple (Azure Cloud Temple).