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The favorite attractions in Xian

1. Terracotto Army, a must-see for your China tour deals

Favorite thing: 1>This army of 6000 warriors defends the tomb of the first China Emperor, Shi Huangdi (3° century JC). Each of them is an individual because the heads are made separatly and put on the bodies. The features of each are original and may be true. There are 4 buildings to visit : the Chariots Builing, the Sites 1, 2 & 3. The largest is the Site 2 with the army. IMPORTANT : it is now allowed to take photographes.

2>Before Emperor Qin Shi build his tomb and took thousands of terracotta warriors with him, ist was custom, that emperors had real people, who died with them in their tomb. It had been tombs excavated, which contained women and men, who died from poison or suffocated, after they had been closed into the tomb.

Chinese people beleive, that life after death is similar to live on earth. People and things, they have in their graves, will be of help in their life in heaven.

After Qin Shi the emperors took statues into their tombs, which were much smaller. Today people are burried with paper models of all the luxury, which makes life easy and comfortable.

3>see the Imax movie at the Terra Cotta Army site. We went there last. I recommend that you go there first; then tour the pits and excavations. Do not miss the bronze chariots and riders.

Did you know that the terra cotta soldiers are dug up in broken pieces and shards, then reconstructed in a workshop and returned to the pits after being pieced together?? A real Chinese puzzle.

4>There are several buildings containing the statues. Quite impressive. From Xian (you can start your Silk Road tour), take a bus to the site. #2) GREAT MOSQUE -Never knew that there was a prominent Muslim population in China. It was fascinating to see this part of China, in Xi'an. #3) OLD XI'AN - Near the Great Mosque. Take some time to walk around the walled portion of the city.

Fondest memory: The main attraction has still to be discovered : the tomb. We already know what we will see : a sarcophagus floating on a river of mercury, in the middle of treasures, with the skeletons of the Emperor's wifes and of the workers (so, the secret is kept), all in a palace. Currently, the tomb is under a hill and the Chinese people wait to have time and means to make the research.

2. Hua Qing Hot Springs (an option for popular China tours)

Favorite thing (from customers): 1>I really enjoyed Huaqingqiao most. My timing was especially appropriate since it was the day they buried Zhang Xueliang in Hawaii, the general who kidnapped Chiang Kai-shek. You oculd see the bullets littering the walls and the signpost that said 'Jiang was captured here' up the hill.

2> From Xian we drove out into the countryside and stopped at this famous hot springs bath. It was built by an emperor for his most favored concubine, Lady Young, for she loved to bathe here. Apparently, this ruler spent so much time doting on his mistress that he let the country slide into ruin. In each of the small buildings is a differently shaped bath.

3>The place is very quiet and relaxing, except when you share the visit with a huge group of tourists. It's a nice garden with many ponds and pagodas. As it's sunday, there are many chinese people walking up and down, and souvenir stalls.

You can consider these tow attractions in your China tour packages.

10:03 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


Intangible assets added to Tibetan preservation list

In front of a forest backdrop projected on a screen, a group of Tibetan "hunters" wearing blue masks dance into the limelight, followed by a costumed "prince" and hymn-singing "fairies."

This is a modern rendition of a centuries-old Tibetan opera. Its songs, dances and costumes remain faithful to the original forms. The only difference is that it was staged in a modernized theater with fancy visual and acoustic effects.

Moreover, the audience for the show -- on Wednesday -- included many foreigners, many of whom were visiting Lhasa (a top destination included in China vacation deals), capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, where the theater is located.

This updating of Tibetan opera and the cultivation of foreign fans are typical of efforts within the art form to strengthen its prospects.

"Tibetan operas are unique among all Chinese operas. It carries the special memories and cultures of the Tibetan people," says Liu Zhiqun, former deputy director of the Tibet Ethnic Art Institute.

Incorporating Tibetan poetry, music, dance, painting and acrobatics, Tibetan operas have been dubbed the "living fossil" of Tibetan culture. Once having had only local Tibetans in its audience, the art form is now appealing to more domestic and overseas culture vultures after being moved into theaters with the addition of modern stage elements, Liu explains.

He says Tibetan operas were once "open-air performances" staged in villages, farms and nobles' yards on festive occasions, with the only instruments being drums and cymbals.

"Now, apart from performances still thriving in rural areas, we have theater adaptations that feature the use of modern technologies -- we can add computerized sounds of birds and thunderstorms to make the scenes look vivid," according to Liu.

Tseten Dorje, a veteran actor in Tibetan opera which should be watched after your tired China tours, can recall the old days when most people in his trade were destitute performers traveling the countryside and putting on shows with only primitive tools and techniques.

"We used to describe spectacular scenes like expanses of barley in Nangsa Obar or the boiling sea of blood in Sukyi Nyima all in asides, but now we have LED screens and verisimilar settings like rockworks and castles," says the 77-year-old.

Tseten Dorje is a former member of the Tibetan Opera Troupe, which China established in 1962 in an effort to preserve and promote this cultural heritage for popular China tour package.

In 1987, the troupe sent him and eight other members on its first overseas tour, to the United States. In the following two decades, the troupe has performed in nearly 30 countries and regions outside China.

"The advances in technology, for one thing, have helped non-native audiences understand the opera's contents and supported its performances abroad," says Tseten Dorje.

In 2012, cultural authorities in Tibet completed the filming of eight classic Tibetan operas that had been orally passed down and were threatened with oblivion. The DVD versions were released in April with subtitles in Tibetan, Mandarin Chinese and English.

"Tibetan operas have moved from open-air platforms to theater stages, now there are digital versions, so people from across the world can watch them at home. It means more audience and a bright future for the opera," says Migmar, leader of Tibet's Nyangrain Folk Opera Troupe.

Get more via China tour agents.

09:56 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


Dragon Palace Scenic Spot, a fairyland in Anshun

Dragon Palace Scenic Spot (also called Longgong) is located in the western suburbs of Anshun City, Guizhou Province. If departing from Huangguoshu Waterfall, tourists could get there within only one-hour's driving. A lot of tourists know about the magnificent underground cave system there, which has an underground river, several waterfalls and stalactites inside.

A great number of karst caves stretching fifteen kilometers in length also contribute to Dragon Palace's great popularity. In 2007 it was listed as a 5-A National Tourist Attraction and makes contribution to China tourism.

The scenic spot consists of four main areas, called the Tianchi Lake, Dragon Gate Waterfall, and the Dragon Palace respectively. Dragon Palace Cave is the most interesting one, its name "Dragon Palace" is derived from appearance of the main underground hall called Dragon Palace Hall, which looks like a crystal palace where a king of dragon lives.

Inside the cave, visitors joining popular China travel packagecould take a boat on the underground stream to catch the best views in the cave. The stream goes through a deep labyrinth and leads to the spacious and bright-lit halls, around which are the stone pillars and a stone forest, in the shape of human beings and animals. The scene keeps changing when boat gets deeper into the cave. The stream way forms two chambers: the outer chamber and the inner chamber.

In the inner chamber, there is a platform about 1000 square meters serving as a dock, there visitors could get ashore to go around and have a closer view of the stalactites. In the outer chamber, visitors could also get off the boat, go up some stone ladders and get to the Tiger's Den, from which some 5400-meter-long stone ladders will take visitors back to the gate again.

Outside the cave, Longmen Water Fall and Stone Forest Park are worth to visit if time is enough. There are many kinds of natural plants inside the stone forest park. Natural stone formations and green trees stand crowded side by side. Longmen Waterfall is at the mouth of a cave, where waters from Tianchi, rushes down the cliff and forms a unique sight. As it looks like a white dragon coming out of its cave, people gave it the name Longmen, meaning Dragon Gate.

You can get more via China tour agents.

09:24 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)