August 30, 2009

chongqing

Chongqing is the largest and most populated municipality of the People’s Republic of China’s four provincial-level municipalities. It is also the only one of these municipalities in the less densely populated western region of China. Formerly (until March 14,1997) a sub-provincial city within Sichuan Province, the municipality of Chongqing has a registered population of 31,442,300 (2005). The boundaries of Chongqing municipality reach much farther into the city’s hinterland than the boundaries of the other three provincial level municipalities (Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin), and much of the municipality, which spans over 80 000 km², is rural. The population of the urban area of Chongqing proper was 5.09 million.

Majority of the people of the municipality are Han while 49 minority groups are also inhabited here, including the Tujia, Miao, Hui, Man, Yi, Zhuang, Buyi, Mongolians, Tibetans, Bai, Dong, Uygur, Koreans, Hani, Dai, Lisu, Wa, Lahu, Shui, Naxi, Qiang and Yilao.
The population of the minority groups reaches 1.75 million, 5.6% of Chongqing’s total (31.4423 million). The population of the Tujia people is the largest, 1.13 million. The Miao ranks second, 520,000, which mainly covers the five autonomies (counties) of Qianjiang Development Zone and Fuling District.

Climate and Geography
Chongqing is situated at 105`17′-110`11′ E and 28`10′-32`13′ N, at the transitional area between the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and the plain on the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River in the sub-tropical climate zone swept by the moist monsoon. The average annual temperature is around 18℃, with the lowest winter temperature averaging between 6℃ and 8℃ and summer temperature averaging between 27℃ and 29℃. It has mild winter, hot summers, long frost-free periods and ample rain, as well as warm, wet and cloudy days, with rain and heat occurring in the same season. It has an annual rainfall of 1,000-1,400 mm. The land under Chongqing’s jurisdiction is 470 kilometers from east to west, and 450 kilometers from north to south. It borders on Hubei and Hunan provinces in the east, Guizhou in the south, Sichuan in the west and north and Shaanxi Province at its northeast corner.

History
Chongqing has a history of more than 3,000 years. The local culture was originated in the area centered at Chongqing, the place of the ancient state of Ba people. In the 11th century B.C. when the Zhou dynasty replaced the Shang dynasty, the Ba people established the State of Ba with present-day Chongqing as its capital. Later the State of Qin, after conquering the State of Ba, divided China into 36 prefectures, and Ba Prefecture, the previous the State of Ba, was one of them. At its peak time, the State of Ba covered a large area, including present-day eastern Sichuan province, southern Shaanxi province, western Hubei province, northwestern Hunan province, and northern Guizhou province, with its administrative center at Chongqing. During most of the time from the Qin and Han dynasties, this area remained one unified administrative area.

In 1929, Chongqing was officially established as a city.
 
From 1937 to 1946, when the national government was relocated to Chongqing, the city became the war-time capital of China, the national supreme command of Anti-Fascist War and the Anti-Japanese War, as well as the political, economic and cultural centers of the rear area in that period. Consequently, Chongqing is called “the Capital in Triplicate”. After the national government returned to Nanjing after the War, Chongqing remained a municipality directly under the central government.
 
In the early years after the founding of People’s Republic China, Chongqing served as the seat of Southwest Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, the seat of the Southwest Military and Administrative Commission, and the political, economic, and cultural centers of Southwest China, and was a municipality directly under the central government.
 
In 1954, Chongqing became a city under the government of Sichuan province when the Southwest China administration division was removed.
 
On March 14, 1997, Chongqing became China’s fourth municipality directly under the central government, the only one in west China, when a bill was approved at the Fifth Session of the Eighth National People’s Congress, opening a new chapter in the history of Chongqing.

August 30, 2009

Ciqikou Old Town

Ciqikou Old Town is an old sleepy town built in the Ming and Qing Dynasties, and  has been well preserved in modern Chongqing,. 
It was Chongqing’s old harbor and was once the home of many of Chongqing’s rich merchants, where you can still see lots of Ming and Qing dynasty architecture, local shops, tea houses, local Sichuan street performance and so on.
Ciqikou Old Town2

The town’s name, Ciqikou, means porcelain harbor, and the community prospered from the porcelain trade. Today it offers a glimpse of the peaceful laid-back life in the Sichuan countryside and is somewhere to take a break from the busy commercial world of Chongqing.
The town is one of the key historic districts under conservation in the urban area of Chongqing. It plays an extremely important part in making Chongqing a famous historical and cultural city. With the long history, Ciqikou Old Town has some typical traditional and cultural characteristics featured in the surroundings.
It is really a charming quiet place with traditional Chinese folk culture and construction. You would enjoy the quiet relax and release from the noisy city completely.

August 30, 2009

sanxia

xsanxiabowugua6

China Three Gorges Museum is situated at the west part of the People’s Square of Chongqing . Occupying the area of 30,000 square meters, the museum was completed and opened to the public on Jun 18 , 2005 with the construction area of 42,500 square meters. It was the first large museum with the title of ” China ” named by the State Council Office of the People’s Republic of China beyond Beijing.  China Three Gorges Museum has another name – Chongqing Museum . It’s not only a specified museum of Three Gorges but also a comprehensive museum of history and art,a collection of over 170,000 pieces of cultural relics. Entering the Museum, you could watch four basic presentation:  ”The Splendid Three Gorges”-reflecting the history and culture of the Three Gorges  ”Far-Ancient Ba Yu”- introducing the origination of the local history  ”The Urban Development of Chongqing”-stating the transitional process of Chongqing  ”Anti-Japanese Days ” – telling the stories occurred in Anti – Japanese period  Moreover,there are other six specialized exhibitions:  ”Paintings and Calligraphies in Different Historical Periods ” ‘”The Currencies in Different Periods of China”, “the Sculpture in Han Dynasty”,” Cultural Relics Donated by Mr. Li Chuli “,”Minority Nationality Custom in Southwest China “,”Ceramics in Different Periods of China ”   Besides, the museum has the Round – Screen Cinema that shows the natural scenery and daily life of the Three Gorges area before the construction of Three Gorges Dam , the Semi-Scene Picture of” Big Bombing in Chongqing” which represents the five years’ continuing bombing in Chongqing as the temporary capital during World War II. The museum also equips an International Academic Hall , an Audience Activities Center and 3 temporary Exhibition Halls that enriching the functions for society service.

August 30, 2009

The Dazu Rock Carvings

The Dazu Rock Carvings2

The Dazu Rock Carvings are a series of Chinese religious sculptures and carvings, dating back as far as the 7th century A.D., depicting and influenced by Buddhist, Confucian and Taoist beliefs. Listed as a World Heritage Site, the Dazu Rock Carvings are made up of 75 protected sites containing some 50,000 statues, with over 100,000 Chinese characters forming inscriptions and epigraphs. The sites are located in Chongqing Municipality within the steep hillsides throughout Dazu County (located about 60 kilometers west of the city of Chongqing). The highlights of the rock grotto are found on Mount Baoding and Mount Beishan.
The earliest carvings were begun in 650 A.D. during the early Tang Dynasty, but the main period of their creation began in the late 9th century, when Wei Junjing, Prefect of Changzhou, pioneered the carvings on Mount Beishan, and his example was followed after the collapse of the Tang Dynasty by local and gentry, monks and nuns, and ordinary people during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period (907-65). In the 12th century, during the Song Dynasty, a Buddhist monk named Zhao Zhifeng began work on the elaborate sculptures and carvings on Mount Baoding, dedicating 70 years of his life to the project.
Off limits to visitors for many years, the carvings were opened to Chinese travelers in 1961 and foreign visitors in 1980. Until 1975 there was only a muddy path between the town of Dazu and the main cluster of carvings.

The carvings were listed as a World Heritage Site in 1999, citing “…their aesthetic quality, their rich diversity of subject matter, both secular and religious, and the light that they shed on everyday life in China during this period. They provide outstanding evidence of the harmonious synthesis of Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism.”