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Ningbo City

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History

Ningbo, a famous foreign trade port, has a very long history. 7,000 years ago the people of Ningbo had made the glorious "Hemudu Culture" in this land and begun to develop towards the sea. Ningbo was a part of the Yue State during the Spring & Autumn Period, whereas a part of Huiji Shire during the Qin Dynasty and Han Dynasty 2,000 years ago, which consisted of four counties including Yin, Mao, Juzhang and Yuyao. The trading, shipbuilding and ocean shipping were rather flourishing at that time in Ningbo. In the early stage of the Ming Dynasty, Ningbo was granted as the Mingzhou Prefecture, but in 1381, the 14th year of Emperor Hongwu's reign, it was changed into Ningbo Prefecture, which is still in use today. Ning in Chinese means peace and Bo refer to the wave; thus, Ningbo actually implies when the ocean is calm, and the wave is gentle. During the Tang Dynasty, Ningbo was the center that manufactured the Tang ships and celadon china of the Yue Kiln and did business very frequently with foreign countries. It was granted altogether with Guangzhou, Yangzhou and Quanzhou the title the Four Largest Foreign Trade Ports of China, which composed the "Silk and China Road on the Sea" at that time. In 1840s, according to the "Five Ports Trade Treaty" which was signed with the western imperialist powers, Ningbo was forced to build a trading port, which was put into use in 1844.

Geography

Sanjiang Kou is the busiest section in downtown Ningbo, which is also called "Outside Beach of Ningbo". It refers to the riparian area in which the Yuyao River and the Fenghua River join together to form the Yongjiang River and then flow into the East Sea. Near the Sanjiang Kou, there are the Ling Bridge, Jiangsha Bridge, Yongjiang Bridge, Xinjiang Bridge, the Jiangsha Park, Shanshan Park, the Monument in memory of the visit of a Japanese Buddhist monk, Dao Yuan, in the Song Dynasty, etc. All kinds of the buildings and mansions stand in the Sanjiang Kou. Even the "First Street of Zhejiang Province", the Zhongshan Dong Road Shopping Street abounding in plazas, department stores and clothes monopoly shops, is located here. Being a place attracting so many merchants of different dynasties, Sanjiang Kou is worthy to be the landmark of Ningbo.

Climate

Belonging to the subtropical monsoon climate, being temperate and moist, Ningbo has four distinct seasons. The average temperature in the whole year is 16.2C. Among the average temperatures of different months of a year, the highest is that of July, reaching up to 28.8C, and the lowest is that of January, being -4.2C. The frost-free period here covers 230-240 days and the growing period of the crops covers 300 days, which is fit for the growth of crops like grain, cotton, oil crops, etc. the annual average rainfall is 1300-1400mm, among which the rainfall of May to June holds up to 60%

Natural Ecological Environment

In the middle part of the coastline of China, close to the East Sea, Ningbo is naturally protected by the Zhoushan Archipelago in the east, lies on the verge of the Hangzhou Bay in the north, and connects with Shaoxing in the west and faces the Sanmen Bay in the south. Abounding in all kinds of natural scenic spots, the ecological environment of Ningbo is very beautiful, for the vegetation on the plain, the hill and the mountain is perfectly protected. The covering ratio of trees of the whole city is 47.5% and that of the urban area reaches 30%. There are two state forest parks-the Tiantong Park and the Xikou Park, and a provincial forest park-the Nanxi Park in Ningbo. The Tengtou Village of Fenghua has even been awarded the title "Top 500 Regions with Good Ecological Environment in the World".City Symbol of Ningbo

"Benteng" (Surging Forward), a sculpture made of stainless steel, 8 meters high, stands in the Center of Zhongshan Culture Square of Ningbo. The style of the lucid and freely revolving modern shaping reminds the visitors of the successive progress that the people of Ningbo have made from the ancient time to present. On the inside circle of the base of the sculpture, nine pictures, showing respectively the scenery of Hemudu Relic, the Tianyi Pavilion, the Beilun Harbor, the Tianfeng Pagoda, the Ling Bridge, the Drum-tower, the Zhaobao Mountain, and the Xiaogang Developing Region, are placed to set off the theme of the sculpture. The outside circle of the base is composed of 21 groups of fountains symbolizing that Ningbo is running toward the 21st century.

Culture

Known as "Town of Cultural Relics", Ningbo is a famous historical and cultural city of China. Totally there are 231 cultural relic protection units of different grades in Ningbo, among which 7 are under the protection of the state and 29 are under the protection of the province. There are 10 professional arts troupes, 9 theaters, 270 film projection units and 155 profitable performing sites. The typical local operas in Ningbo include the Yong Opera, the Yao Opera, etc. The Xiao Baihua Yue Opera Troupe of Ningbo has gained a great deal of praises from the audience both at home and abroad in recent years. Meanwhile, the cultural facilities are gradually implemented in the city. Bath the Cixi County and the Haishu County are awarded the title "the Advanced Cultural Counties in China". At present, there are altogether 982 entertainment places and 1,077 videotape rent houses in Ningbo with 100,000 employees. A comprehensive system of cultural market, related widely with entertainment, audiovisual products, books, recreation, cultural relics and arts, has been thus formed

A Survey of Tourist Industry

Under the reform and opening up policy, the tourist industry of Ningbo has now taken initial shape after experiencing the embryonic stage. It has played a positive role in promoting the reforming and opening up of Ningbo, in accelerating the construction of the modernized international port city and in enriching the life of the people. During the year of 1998, Ningbo has received totally 100,000 foreign visitors and 10,050,000 home visitors. With the enhancement of the economic power and the adjustment of the economic structure, the promoting effects and the potential of the tourist industry of Ningbo have emerged. Personages of various circles have all realized that it is very important to stress on tourist industry and to regard it as the new economic growing point and the pillar industry of Ningbo.


In recent years, the number of tourists to Ningbo keeps on rising, and as a result the tourist industry income increases gradually. Meanwhile, the development and construction of the tourist resources and the scenic spots are strengthened, and new tourist products are developed as soon as possible. Moreover, the comprehensive reception ability has been improved rapidly. Now Ningbo has totally 54 foreign-related tourist hotels, 5 international travel agencies and 42 domestic travel agencies. The employees in the tourist industry in the whole city have reached more than 17,000. Ningbo Airport, Long-distance Bus Stations, the South Railway station and the Passenger Transportation Port have formed a stereoscopic transportation network.

City Flower and City Tree of Ningbo

On September 14th, 1984, the elegant and stately camellia was selected as the City Flower of Ningbo and the evergreen camphor tree was selected as the City Tree in the 8th Conference of the Standing Committee of the People's Congress of Ningbo. Both the camellia and the camphor tree are local plants well representing the historical culture and natural appearance of Ningbo. In addition, the bright and colorful camellia and camphor tree are easy to plant and control and immune to many diseases. At present, the camellia and the camphor tree are widely planted throughout the city, and thus form gorgeous roadside scenery in NingboTourist Symbol of Ningbo

"Sun Held by Two Birds" is a piece of unearthed artifacts found in the Hemudu Relic, which can be traced back to 7,000 years ago. Figuring like a comb, the design of "Sun Held by Two Birds" is composed of five concentric circles, forming the sun in the center covered with flame on the upper outer circle which symbolizes the light of the sun, and a couple of phoenix around the sun dancing. It's the first man-made sacred sun statue with complete figure found in the archaeological work up till now. Since the whole figure is ingeniously and boldly designed, the lines are skilled and smooth, it can be called the fine work as compared with other art articles found in the Hemudu Relic. Signifying the original worship to the totem, it actually represents the respect of the people of Hemudu to the sun and the universe. Therefore, Hemudu in the ancient time was regarded as the "Hometown of the Sun God"; "Sun Held by Two Birds" hence stands for the long history and the unique tourist resources of Ningbo.

Economy

Ningbo is always cared most by central government and the provincial government of Zhejiang in carrying out the opening-up policy and the economic construction. For example, Ningbo was included in the "14 nationwide port cities firstly sharing the further opening polity" in 1984, and it was also included in the "Cities with Special Plans" and "sub-provincial cities" respectively in 1987 and in 1994. As one of the major constructing regions invested by the state, a great amount of traffic, energy and raw material projects have been established in Ningbo. As regards the industry, a system focusing mainly on the petroleum industry, the fine chemical industry and the electric power industry has been formed supported with the electronics, metallurgy, building material, textile, food, medicine and handicraft, etc. As regards the agriculture, a comprehensive developing pattern combining the crop production, the diversified economy and the township enterprises has prospered.The tourist industry has also become the new economic growing point of the city. At present, Ningbo is one of the "Top Tourist Cities of China". The future target of Ningbo government is to build Ningbo into a widely opened and modernized international port city with strong economic strength, developed scientific and cultural level, prosperous life of people, good social order and custom, and beautiful urban and suburban environment.