China, a large tourist country, boast numerous attractions, from historical sites, cultural sites to scenic sites. From the overwhelming Forbidden City and world-renowned Great Wall in Beijing, impressive Terracotta Warriors and Horses in Xian, the breathtaking Li River in Guilin, prosperous Bund in metropolitan Shanghai, majestic Yangtze River, to captivating water-town in Suzhou, mesmerizing Jiuzhaigou Valley, ancient Lijiang Old Town and mysterious Tibet.
Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China built, rebuilt, and maintained between the 5th century BC and the 16th century to protect the northern borders of the Chinese Empire from the attacks of nomadic tribes from the north. The majority of the existing wall were built during the Ming Dynasty. The condition of the Great Wall of China ranges from excellent to ruined. The most popular area of the Great Wall is at Bādálǐng. Also renovated but less touristy are Sīmatai and Jīnshanling.
Situated 130 meters above the Lhasa valley, the Potala Palace rises a further 170 meters and is the greatest monumental structure in all of Tibet. The construction of the present palace began in 1645 during the reign of the 5th Dalai Lama and by 1648 the Potrang Karpo, or White Palace, was completed. The Potrang Marpo, or Red Palace, was added between 1690 and 1694. The Potala Palace remained the residence of the Dalai Lama until the 14th Dalai Lama fled to India, after the Chinese invasion in 1959.
Located in the center of Beijing, the Forbidden City is the world’s largest palace covering 72 hectares. Built from 1406 to 1420, the palace complex consists of 980 surviving buildings with 8,707 rooms surrounded by a six meter deep moat and a ten meter high wall. Twenty-four emperors reigned over the country for almost 5 centuries from the Forbidden City until the abdication of Puyi, the last Emperor of China. Today the Forbidden City is a museum and one of the most popular tourist attractions in China.
Victoria Harbour is a major tourist attraction in Hong Kong and one of the deepest container ports in the world. The bay offers stunning views of the skyscrapers of Hong Kong island on one side, and the Tsim Sha Tsui shoreline on the other. Victoria Harbour is also one of the busiest harbors in the world with hundreds of ferries, junks and speed boats darting up and down the shore. One of the best ways to see the harbor is a trip on the Star Ferry.
The Terracotta Army is a collection of terracotta sculptures depicting the armies of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China. It is the most popular tourist attraction in Xián and one of the most popular in all of China. It is estimated that in the three pits containing the Terracotta Army there were over 8,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses, the majority of which are still buried in the pits.