The debate over the future of Unesco following America’s withdrawal provides a timely reminder of the richness and diversity of China’s own history.
The decision by the United States to leave Unesco in protest at what it described as “anti-Israel” bias followed by China’s decision to withdraw its candidate to lead the global cultural organisation has thrown a spotlight on the group’s operations.
The loss of the US and its funding would be a serious blow to the organisation but despite its size and cultural clout America is only 10th on the list of countries with the most world heritage sites.
This may be a reflection of the fact that it is still a relatively young country.
Desert vistas. Lush gorges. Charming riversides. Epic statues and buildings. China is a nation of great sweeping beauty. These places show why.
(CNN) — Almost all of us are familiar with the great man-made attractions in China: The Forbidden City in Beijing. The Terracotta Warriors of Xi’an. Shanghai’s skyscraper forest in Pudong.
For a country of its massive size and varied geography, however, it’s surprising how relatively few people outside China appreciate the extent of the country’s other attractions, many of them natural wonders to rival any in the world.
Is it possible to limit a list of China’s superlative attractions to a mere 40? Not really. But a photo memory card goes only so far. And, as this story illustrates, it’s impossible to stop clicking once you get a camera in front of some of China’s most beautiful places to visit.
The dreamlike landscape of Hangzhou’s most popular attractions seem to have been plucked right out of classical Chinese poetry. Experience China’s rich cultural heritage and wonderful natural beauty at these 8 enchanting places in Hangzhou.
1. WEST LAKE
Inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011, this star attraction of Hangzhou is a must-visit for every tourist. Rent a bicycle or take a scenic stroll along this freshwater lake, and stop by the many pagodas and pavilions along the way for a lovely picnic or a tranquil moment by the water. At night, watch Zhang Yimou’s Impression West Lake, a stunning open-air drama and dance performance complete with harmonious music and mesmerising light show.
2. LIUHE PAGODA
Perched atop Yuelun Mountain overlooking the serene Qiantang River, this pagoda with a height of 60 metres is one of Hangzhou’s iconic cultural buildings.
While a week lounging poolside is inviting, there are plenty of great things to do in the Canary Islands and island hopping is doable and worthwhile.
Glorious sunshine and golden sandy stretches have catapulted the Canary Islands onto the European hot list for a winter sun pick me up. While a week lounging by the pool is all-too-inviting, there are always benefits to mixing things up a little and exploring and there are plenty of great things to do in the Canary Islands.
Infuse a little variety into your break and fly or sail the Atlantic Ocean and you can easily visit more than one of this island group, each with an individual character that makes them intriguingly unique.
Pingyao, a UNESCO World Heritage site, hopes to keep tourists coming with Jia Zhangke’s new international film festival.
Millions of tourists visit the walled ancient city of Pingyao every year, but its faded movie theater has never been an attraction. The theater has been closed for over a decade, idly gathering dust as throngs of people shuffle by.
Nevertheless, the 2,700-year-old city in northern China’s Shanxi province could soon be at the center of Chinese cinema.
Several months ago, pile drivers starting pounding away at Pingyao’s abandoned diesel engine factory, transforming it into the site of the area’s first international film festival. The inaugural Pingyao Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon International Film Festival (PYIFF) — named after the Oscar-winning kung fu movie — will kick off in late October.
The main driver behind the project is celebrated Chinese cineast and Shanxi native Jia Zhangke.
Some restaurant and hotel operators are considering cutting their losses and leaving – if they haven’t already.
This time last year, Zhuoma was busy preparing yak meat, fried potatoes and butter tea for all the holidaymakers wanting to sample some hearty Tibetan fare at her restaurant near the Jiuzhaigou National Park.
But after a magnitude 7 earthquake struck the mountainous area in Sichuan province in early August, it has been the quietest “Golden Week” holiday she has seen in a decade.
So much so that Zhuoma – who has run the A Bu Lu Zi Tibetan Restaurant for 13 years – decided to take a break herself and go to Yunnan province with her family.
“It’s just too quiet down here,” Zhuoma said.
Her trip is one of an estimated 701 million being made across the country during the extended National Day break from October 1 to 8.
The Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2014, spans over 1,700 kilometers through six provinces and cities, with 42 km in the Tongzhou district of Beijing.
The canal connects central Beijing to its outskirts and then travels south, connecting the Yellow and Yangtze rivers while meandering past several urbanized areas.
On Feb 24, President Xi Jinping visited the Grand Canal Forest Park in Tongzhou, where he was briefed by local officials about its history, the management system and overall environmental protection provided by the district.
At the time, Xi said that Tongzhou has historical and cultural heritages, and to make the past serve the present its resources should be explored, with the Grand Canal at the core. Provinces and cities along the Grand Canal should all take responsibility to protect it, he added.