Places of China

The People’s Republic of China has administrative control over 22 provinces. China also has five subdivisions officially termed autonomous regions, each with a designated minority group; four municipalities; and two Special Administrative Regions (SARs), which enjoy a degree of political autonomy. These 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, and four municipalities can be collectively referred to as “mainland China”, a term which usually excludes the SARs of Hong Kong and Macau. None of these divisions are recognized by the ROC government, which claims the entirety of the PRC’s territory.

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Anhui province

Anhui province

Anhui is an eastern Chinese province known for its Huangshan mountains. The region’s low-hanging clouds, distinctive granite rocks and twisted pine trees have been subjects of numerous classical paintings and poems. Trails and cable cars provide access to some Huangshan peaks (1,864m Lian Hua Feng is the highest). The gateway Tunxi district and surrounding villages preserve examples of the Huizhou regional architectural style.

Photo gallery: Hongcun village

Hongcun is a village in Yi County in the historical Huizhou region of southern Anhui Province, China, near the southwest slope of Mount Huangshan. The village is arranged in the shape of an ox with the nearby hill (Leigang Hill) interpreted as the head, and two trees standing on it as the horns. Four bridges across the Jiyin stream can be seen as the legs whilst the houses of the village form the body. Inside the “body”, the Jiyin stream represents the intestines and various lakes such as the “South Lake” (Nanhu) form the other internal organs.

Mystic Yellow mountains Huangshan

Supposedly he has invented a horse cart, a boat, clothing and even Chinese football. He improved the lives of ancient hunters by teaching them how to build shelters and to breed animals. The emergence of the Chinese nation is attributed to the legendary Yellow Emperor. For some, he is a fanciful legend, for some he was once a living hero. But I do not want to talk about him. I want to talk about the place where the Yellow Emperor achieved his immortality and from where he raised to the heavens. I want to talk about the Yellow Mountains.

Fujian province

Fujian

Fujian is a southeastern Chinese province known for its mountains and coastal cities. In Xiamen, a port town and former foreign concession, the island of Gulangyu has pedestrianized streets and 19th-century colonial villas. Fuzhou, the provincial capital, is a transportation hub for destinations such as Quanzhou. Once visited by Marco Polo, Quanzhou offers temples, an old-town district and Maritime Museum.

Fujian Tulou – Round houses in South China – UNESCO Heritage

So, my first movie ever is finally finished and online. It is a short movie (10 min.) about amazing Fujian Tulou, which are located in South China. I have invested a lot of work into that, but it was a great fun. It is my first movie so it is not perfect. I promise I will get better :) I am also attaching script for those who love to read. And please help me share :)

Henan province

Henan

Henan, a province in Central China’s Yellow River Valley, is widely recognized as the place where Chinese civilization originated. There are 4 ancient capitals within its borders. Luoyang, capital during multiple dynasties, is home to Baima Si (White Horse Temple), among China’s first Buddhist temples, founded in the 1st century. Nearby, the Longmen Grottoes have Buddhist rock carvings dating to the 5th century.

Mount Song and Shaolin Temple

In Mount Song there are many beautiful sights. The tourists are lured by the beautiful nature and views, but the biggest attraction of the mountains is a Buddhist temple Shaolin. There are few people who haven't heard about this place. It is famous for all the legends and innumerable films which were shot about Shaolin. Both in China and in the Western world.

Hubei

Hubei

Hubei is a landlocked province in Central China. Its varied terrain encompasses mountains, lakes and wilderness areas. Wuhan, its capital, is the site of picturesque East Lake, the 5-tiered Yellow Crane Tower and vast Hubei Provincial Museum. The province is also known for the Three Gorges, a popular destination of Yangtze River cruises and home to the massive Three Gorges Dam.

Taoist Wudang mountains

As a child I loved Kung Fu films. The martial arts caused my affection for China and I am still a big fan of theirs. However, I have never followed the footsteps of Kung Fu in China. Until now. We are about to go to the Taoist Wudang Mountains, the biggest Taoist mountains in China and also one of the birthplaces of Chinese martial arts.

Hunan province

Hunan

Hunan Province is a province of the People’s Republic of China. It is located in South Central China, south of the middle course of the Yangtze River, and south of Lake Dongting (hence the name Hunan, which means “south of the lake”).Hunan is sometimes called and officially abbreviated as “湘” for short, after the Xiang River which runs through the province.

Photo gallery: Hongshilin Stone forest

The Hibiscus Town is very close to the millions-of-years-old Red Stone Forest natural reservation. It is not as vast as the stone forest in the Yunnan province, but it is beautiful and without any tourists. Admission is required, and it is also quite high. Inside the park there are still no shops, no vendors, no McDonald's. They are already being built, so come quickly. If you desire ancient villages without bars and beautiful geological parks without tourists, you must visit the Furong Zhen and Red Stone Forest as soon as possible. Despite a little disappointment in the beginning, without any hesitation I would go back. This place became one of my most favorite places in China. The image of an ancient village with a waterfall underneath is just breathtaking.

Photo gallery: Zhangjiajie national reservation, Hunan

Zhangjiajie, a city in the northwest of China's Hunan province, is home to the famed Wulingyuan Scenic Area. This expansive protected zone encompasses thousands of jagged quartzite sandstone columns, many of which rise over 200m, as well as caves filled with stalactites and stalagmites. Wulingyuan also encompasses forests, rivers, waterfalls and 2 large natural land bridges, and shelters endangered plant and animal species.

Photo gallery: Tianmen shan, Hunan

Tianmen Mountain is a mountain located within Tianmen Mountain National Park, Zhangjiajie, in northwestern Hunan Province, China. A cablecar was constructed by the French company Poma from nearby Zhangjiajie railway station to the top of the mountain. Tianmen Mountain Cableway is claimed in tourist publications as the "longest passenger cableway of high mountains in the world", with 98 cars and a total length of 7,455 metres (24,459 ft) and ascent of 1,279 metres (4,196 ft) The highest gradient is an unusual 37 degrees.

Photo gallery: Furong Hibiscus town

Everybody knows the feeling when after seeing a picture you definitely know that you have to visit that place. It happened to me with a picture of Furong Hibiscus town, a small ancient village proudly boasting on the top of a cliff with a huge waterfall flowing underneath – an amazing view. After seeing that picture, I immediately started to search for where it was.

Photo gallery: Fenghuang Phoenix town

Fenghuang County is under the administration of Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, Hunan province, China, bordering the prefecture-level cities of Huaihua to the southeast and Tongren (Guizhou) to the west. It has an exceptionally well-preserved ancient town that harbors unique ethnic languages, customs, arts as well as many distinctive architectural remains of Ming and Qing styles. The town is placed in a mountain setting, incorporating the natural flow of water into city layout. Over half of the city's population belong to the Miao or Tujia minorities.

Photo gallery: Dehang

Dehang, a small village of western Hunan (湘西), 30 minutes from Jishou (吉首) by bus, made it to the list of China’s traditional villages worthy of visiting. In addition, descriptions I read of Dehang contributed to put it on my list. I realised that what I read about this village was too good to be true.

The Ancient Business Town of Hongjiang | A Maze on the Yuan River Banks

Hongjiang (洪江古商城)  is a maze of narrow alleys interconnected via a series of cobble-stone stairs. This ancient town on the banks of the Yuan River (沅江) is one of the three major ancient town of Western Hunan. The now popular Fenghuang in the north acted as a military stronghold, the nearby town of Qiancheng was a regional political center and Hongjiang was a business town.

Ultimate guide to Zhangjiajie

How about spending a few days in a fairytale? Or in a real-life movie? There are some places in the world where it is possible. One such place is called Zhangjiajie, located in the Hunan province in south-central China. Around the city of Zhangjiajie, there are a few fairytale places: the national forest park Wulingyuan, where the movie Avatar was shot; Tianmen mountain with its famous glass planks; and Baofeng Lake with incredible waterfalls;some amazing ancient villages (which I wrote about last time). The most famous among these is definitely Wulingyuan, the birthplace of the movie Avatar.

Qianyang | A hidden gem in Hunan province

In November 2013, the highway that is now linking western Hunan (湘西) province's major towns was still under construction. It's after a painful five-hour bus ride from Tongdao that I arrived in Qianyang (黔阳), a small town I had never heard of. Like every town in this remote part of a landlocked province, Qianyang (which is also called Qiancheng 黔城) did not look attractive at all.

Hibiscus Town Furong

Everybody knows the feeling when after seeing a picture you definitely know that you have to visit that place. It happened to me with a picture of Hibiscus Town, Furong Zhen, a small ancient village proudly boasting on the top of a cliff with a huge waterfall flowing underneath – an amazing view. After seeing that picture, I immediately started to search for where it was. You can get there from Jishou City in the Hunan Province. Jishou is the initial station for visiting many other ancient towns in Hunan. Furong Zhen is located about 70 km from there, so it is possible to take a bus.

Liaoning province

Liaoning

Liaoning is a northeastern Chinese province bordering North Korea and the Yellow Sea. Shenyang, the sprawling capital, is home to the Shenyang Palace Museum (aka Mukden Palace), the original home of the Manchu Qing dynasty emperors. On the Liaodong Peninsula, Dalian is a modern port city known for its beaches, pockets of Russian-style architecture, ski slopes and theme parks.

Photo gallery: Dalian

Dalian is a major city and seaport in the south of Liaoning Province, People's Republic of China. It is the southernmost city of Northeast China and China's northernmost warm water port, at the tip of the Liaodong Peninsula. Dalian is the province's second largest city and has sub-provincial administrative status; only the provincial capital (Shenyang) is larger. The Shandong Peninsula lies southwest across the Bohai Sea; Korea lies across the Yellow Sea to the east.

Shandong province

Shandong

Shandong, an eastern Chinese province on the Yellow Sea, is known for its Taoist and Confucian heritage. As the ancient state of Qi, it was the last kingdom conquered by Qin Shi Huang, who proclaimed himself China’s first emperor in 219 B.C.E. in a ceremony on Taishan. One of China’s most sacred peaks, Taishan is home to shrines, stone tablets and pilgrimage trails.

Photo gallery: Taishan, Mount Tai, Shandong province

Mount Tai (Chinese: 泰山; pinyin: Tài Shān) is a mountain of historical and cultural significance located north of the city of Tai'an, in Shandong province, China. The tallest peak is the Jade Emperor Peak (simplified Chinese: 玉皇顶; traditional Chinese: 玉皇頂; pinyin: Yùhuáng Dǐng), which is commonly reported as 1,545 metres (5,069 ft) tall, but is described by the PRC government as 1,532.7 metres (5,029 ft)

The Holy Mountains of Taishan

Taishan belongs to The Five Sacred Mountains of China, which were celebrated as first in the Chinese history. The term was first recognized during Warring States period (475BC-221BC). It was before Buddhism and Taoism took an important status in Chinese society and even before China became unified (221BC).

Shanghai city

Shanghai

Enormous Shanghai, on China’s central coast, is the country’s biggest city and a global financial hub. Its heart is the Bund, a famed waterfront promenade lined with colonial-era buildings. Across the Huangpu River rises Pudong’s futuristic skyline, including 632m Shanghai Tower and the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, with distinctive pink spheres. Sprawling Yuyuan Garden has traditional pavilions, towers and ponds.

Shanghai fireworks – photo-essay and tutorial

The fourth day of the Chinese New Year, the God of Fortune is coming down from heaven to the earth. That is why Chinese people tend to have a lot of fireworks on this day. They believe if the God of Fortune likes the fireworks, he will help them to get rich during the year. All people want to be rich in China. We know that; they want it pretty badly. But who doesn’t, right?

Architecture o Ladislav Hudec in Shanghai

I have just finished my photography project about architecture of Ladislav Hudec in Shanghai. Ladislav Hudec was a Slovak architect who studied in Hungary and made a huge career in Shanghai. He has built nearly 100 buildings in Shanghai, some of them is the most spectacular old architecture you can find in this amazing city. I was asked by a Slovak director Ladislav Kabos who shot a movie about him, to document 10 of his buildings for a new book he is writing. In the end I just did eight buildings, because I wasn’t allowed to go to the rest one. Why?

My experiences from the great Shanghai

Have you ever wondered if a city has the characteristics of a man or the characteristics of a woman? I think Shanghai is definitely a woman. Right on the first date, she will suck you in with her appearance. Everyone is staring at Shanghai’s beauty with amazement in their face. They do not even mind the pain in the neck they are getting from watching all these skyscrapers. She will amaze everyone.

Shanxi province

Shanxi

Shanxi is a plateau province of North China. Its ancient sites include Pingyao, a preserved old town dating from the Ming and Qing dynasties, with circa-1370 wall. On the outskirts are sprawling old merchants’ mansions including the Qiao Family Courtyard. Taiyan, the modern provincial capital, is known for temples and the Shanxi Museum, with expansive collections of regional artifacts going back to prehistory.

Photo gallery: Lijiashan, Living in caves in China

Writing about the Chinese Hobbiton is a big challenge for me. It is probably one of the most difficult articles I have ever written. Why? Because the power of it being frozen in time and the feeling of lost pride being so strong makes it my favorite place in all of China. Is it possible to describe it with words and some pictures? No, it is not. But it’s worth a try!

Ancient city Pingyao in Shanxi

It is 5 p.m. and we are at the Beijing station, just about to get on a night train. I know that we will get to Pingyao in Shanxi province at 5 a.m. and I am looking forward to it. Some of my friends are a little bit worried about this early arrival, but I know that they will appreciate it because the only time when somebody can experience a poetically quiet atmosphere in this beautiful ancient city is before 8 a.m. After this time, shops, restaurants and bars are taking over.

Lijiashan – Hobbiton in China, Chinese cave dwellings

Writing about the Chinese Hobbiton is a big challenge for me. It is probably one of the most difficult articles I have ever written. Why? Because the power of it being frozen in time and the feeling of lost pride being so strong makes it my favorite place in all of China. Is it possible to describe it with words and some pictures? No, it is not. But it’s worth a try!

Sichuan province

Sichuan

Sichuan is a southwestern Chinese province that contains a stretch of Asia’s largest river, the Yangtze. The region is renowned for its cuisine, which includes spicy hot pots. It’s also the home of giant pandas, which visitors can observe at Bifengxia Panda Base and other reserves. Chengdu, the capital, is a center for traditional Sichuanese opera, which include fire-breathing and sleight-of-hand mask changes.

Life in Wenshu monastery, Chengdu

This month, I am out on the road most of the time. One trip has ended, and I had to go for another one. Me newly married wife is not twice happy about it. But at least I will have some new stories to tell her. And some new pictures to put on my bog. This time, we are in Chengdu. My favorite city in China. Why? Because of the life, locals are having here. It is a huge city, but people know how to relax. Trust me, it is not so common in other Chinese cities.

Yunnan province

Yunnan

Yunnan is a province in southwestern China with a varied landscape encompassing snow-capped mountains, rice terraces, lakes and deep gorges. The region is known for its large number of ethnic minorities. Modern Kunming, known as the “Spring City,” has many museums and temples, including colorful Yuantong Temple. To the southeast, Shilin Stone Forest contains limestone karst peaks formed 270 million years ago.

Photo gallery: Lijiang, Yunnan

Lijiang, a city in the northwest part of China's Yunnan province, is home to the Naxi and several other ethnic minority groups. Dating to the late Song dynasty, its old town encompasses cobblestone streets, canals and Central Market Square and its shops and restaurants. Black Dragon Pool has famed views of the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain range, fronted by the Moon Embracing Pavilion.

Photo gallery: Lugu lake and surroundings, Yunnan

Lugu Lake is located in the North West Yunnan plateau in the centre of Ningliang Yi Autonomous County in the People's Republic of China. The middle of the lake forms the border between the Ninglang County of Yunnan Province and the Yanyuan County of Sichuan province. The formation of the lake is thought to have occurred in a geological fault belonging to the geological age of the Late Cenozoic. It is an alpine lake at an elevation of 2,685 metres and is the highest lake in the Yunnan Province. The lake is surrounded by mountains and has five islands, four peninsulas, fourteen bays and seventeen beaches.

Photo gallery: Dali

Dali City, formerly known as Tali, is the county-level seat of the Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture in northwestern Yunnan, Similar to Carlisle in England, Dali City is not a single city but a county-sized area called a city for administrative purposes. Transportation to "Dali" usually arrives at the modern industrial city called Dali but locally distinguished by its former name Xiaguan. Travelers to and discussion of "Dali", however, usually refers to the old town located about an hour away. The old town is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Yunnan, known for its natural scenery, historical and cultural heritage, and vibrant nightlife.