Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Chengdu
Chengdu lies in an important rice and wheat-growing region in the center of the province of Sichuan.
Chengdu was the capital of the Shu (Zhou) kingdom which was conquered by the Qin in 316 BC. Under the Qin and Han dynasty (221 BC to AD 220) it advanced to become the political, economic and cultural center of southwest China. Even at that time the breeding of silkworms and weaving of brocade were already highly developed industries.
One of China's oldest and most respected state schools was founded here. In the period of the Three Kingdoms (220-280) Chengdu, by now the capital of the state of Shu Han, saw the art of brocade weaving flourish as never before. In the 8th C. it became a center of trade, commerce and industry, which included lacquered and silver filigree work. At the time of the Five Dynasties (907-960) Emperor Meng Chang (919-965) arranged for large numbers of little hibiscus trees to be planted along the town wall and the streets. Chengdu became the capital of Sichuan in 1368.
As a result of its history Chengdu is even today still often known as Brocade City (Jin Cheng) or Hibiscus City (Rong Cheng). It is also a major traffic hub and industrial town with a considerable volume of light and heavy industry. Currently, the city is gripped by a great building bonanza, concentrating mainly on the erection of tower blocks. Moreover, its fourteen colleges, including Sichuan University which was founded here in 1927, make it an important cultural center.
After the Cultural Revolution Chengdu's tradition of tea-houses was revived. Predominantly, these are tea-gardens. Guests buy a portion of tea leaves and receive a cup with lid. A water dispenser walks around the tea-house and tops the cups up with hot water as required.
Temple of Prince Wu
Du Fu's Cottage
Tomb of Wang Jian
Giant Panda Breeding Research Base
Dujiangyan Irrigation System
Wolong Nature Reserve
Monastery of Precious Light
Palace of the Creation of Good Fortune
Cave of the Heavenly Master
Cave of the Heavenly Master (Tianshi Dong) is where Zhang Daoling, the legendary founder of the Taoist religion, taught in a cave in Mount Qingchengsahn. The temple dates from the Sui period (589-618), but was rebuilt at the end of the Qing dynasty (1644-1911). Visitors can see a terracotta likeness of Zhang Daoling and three 90cm/3ft statues dating from 723 and representing Fuxi, Shengong and Xianyuan, three rulers said to lived in China in prehistoric times.