Full Coverages>China>Hebei Online>Tourism

(Hebei Online)
Updated: 2004-07-16 13:43

Located in the south of Hebei Province, Xingtai is close to the Taihang Mountains in the west. It is bordered on the north by Shijiazhuang, on the south by Handan and on the east by Shandong Province.

It has traffic and transport advantages, for two railways-Beijing-Guangzhou and Beijing-Jiulong and two national highways G308 and G108 crossing it and the Xingtai Airpot-the only one in the southern part of Hebei Province. Under its jurisdiction, there are 20 counties, cities and districts with a total area of 12,500 square kilometers and a population of 6.6 million.

Xingtai has a 3,500-year-old history. It has been widely known because "it was an ancient capital being fertile and close to rivers and mountains."In ancient times, it was the origin place of the Shang clan, the Capital of Zuyi, and the territory of Xing Marquis. There had been several capitals set up here in history. Xingtai is the oldest city in Hebei Province.

There had been many outstandingly distinguished people and cardinal events in Xingtai. Hence there are many spots concerned with them, for instance, the former residence of Monk Yi Xing-a famous astronomer in the Tang Dynasty, the Museum Guo Shoujing-an outstanding scientist in the Yuan Dynasty. Also the Zijinshan Academy where the "Five Xingzhou Talents"had studied in the Yuan Dynasty, the stone tablet written by Song Jing-a prime minister in the Tang Dynasty.

The calligraphy "Ode to Wintersweets"written by Emperor Qianlong in the Qing Dynasty, the Xing Marquis Tombs, the Guangyang Mountain where Lao-tze once cultivated his moral character.

Also the Queshan Temple in memory of Bian Que-ancestor of the traditional Chinese medicine is in Xingtai. The site where the Zhao State's Prince Wuling was killed in the Warring States is located nearby. The camps of the outlaw Yellow Turbans Army in the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty, the Museum of the Yihetuan Movement at Weixian County, the beautiful Han Dynasty peony at Baixiang County, the Wusong Park at Qinghe County, the Exhibition Hall of Chinese People's Anti-Japanese Military and Political College in the Qiannan Valley. Visiting such places, you may be deeply impressed with the cultural diversity of Xingtai.

Xingtai is also remarkable for its landscapes. These include the Xingtai Gorges, the Kongshan Baiyun Cave, the Qiannan Valley, Xiaotianchi and more.

There are many delicious foods and peculiar products in Xingtai as well such as the Heis"boiled dumpling, Xingtai's pot sticker, Taihang's Chinese chestnut, Longyao's green Chinese onion, Weixian's watermel-on, Xingtai's date and apricot, Shahe's machang pear, Longyao's zepan lotus root, the Fugang apple and so on, among which the Fugang apple is most famous.

Moreover, Qinghe County is a base in manufacturing sheep fine hair products famous both at home and abroad. Hualong Group is well-known for its food products. Xingtai's Lanniao furniture is also very popular in China.

With colorful culture, there are many folk performances in the traditional festivals like the Spring Festival and the Mid-autumn Festival. For instance, one can enjoy the performances of the taipingdao music, Weixian's luantan opera, and Longyao's yangko dance. It was said that the taipingdao music was used to celebrate victories by the outlaw Yellow Turbans Army in the Eastern Han Dynasty. You can feel its ancient beauty when listening to it.

Xingtai's top twelve hotels with over 6,500 beds and nineteen travel agencies will provide you with great service. It is also very convenient for you to go shopping at the Xinya Shop, the Huatian Supermarket and some other shops. Besides, you can enjoy yourself at many public recreational places such as the Chen-guang bowling Hall, the Xuyang Bowling Hall, the Sanjian Tea House and so on. It is also very pleasant to see the exhibition center of Lanniao furniture. Taste some of the local Xing white spirite at the Zaohuajia White Spirit Company and you will not be disappointed.

The Guo Shoujing Museum

The Guo Shoujing Museum built in 1986 is located at the Dahuo-quan Park in the Qiao-xi District of Xingtai City. It is a Guo Shouji-ng research center in China, and a base bo-th for national science popularization education and patriotism education.
Guo Shoujing (1231-1316), also named Guo Ruosi, born in Xingtai, was an outstanding astronomer, mathematician, and expert of both water conservancy and apparatus making in the Yuan Dynasty. He had contributed a lot to the world scientific development with his over ten world-class scientific and technological achievements.

Hence, there had been two comm-emorative stamps of Guo Shoujing published by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications in the 1960s. A crater on the moon and the No. 2012 asteroid in the outer space were named after him by the International Astronomy Association in the 1970s in honor of his contributions to science.

With an area of 5,000 square meters, the museum shows the Ming and Qing dynasties"construction styles. It consists of four exhibition areas. In the first exhibition area, there are exhibits like the copper statue of Guo Shoujing, the star observation platform, the celestial observation platform.

In the second exhibition area, there are exhibits like the abridged armilla, the armillary sphere, and the scaphe made or used by Guo Shoujing. In the third exhibition area, his achievements in carrying the water conservancy projects are exhibited, and his water control method in Xingzhou, Xixia and Dadu. In the fourth exhibition area, there is a medium-sized film projection hall.

Drive along the Beijing-Shenzhen Express-way, turn to the Yingbin Avenue at the Xingtai North Exit, go west to the Yejin North Road, head south up it until you come to the Dahuoquan Road. Go east on it to the Dahuoquan Park, you will arrive at the Guo Shoujing Museum.

Or take bus No. 14 or 18 at the Xingtai Railway Station, get off at the Dahuoquan Stop.

Office of the Guo Shoujing Museum: 86-319-2292132

Kaiyuan Temple

The Kaiyuan Temple is located near the middle section of the Xingzhou NorthRoad, Xingtai City. Built during the Kaiyuan period in the Tang Dynasty with a long history of over 1,200 years, it was one of the origins of the Caodong sect of Buddhism. In the Five Dynasties, Kong Ben, a monk from India, translated Buddhist sutras into Chinese here in the Later Liang Dynasty. Being a temple of the imperial family in the Yuan Dynasty, it had been visited by Kublai himself twice.

Facing the south, this 300-are temple looks very magnificent. According to the historical record, in its height, there were thousands of monks and pilgrims attending the lectures held by the abbot.

Most parts of the temple have been well preserved such as the Maitreya Hall, the Pilu Hall, the Guanyin Hall and the Great Buddha's Hall, which are of high historic and academic value.

To be specific, the four dragon and phoenix stone pillars in the Guanyin Hall are 4.5 meters in height and 2.5 meters in girth. Coiling around them, the dragons and phoenixes look very lively. The patterns and characters inscribed on the over-eight-hundred-year-old Jinding Bell are still legible showing how well-developed the metallurgical and casting techniques were at that time.

According to a legend, before it was tolled the first time, an old monk said to the others, You can not toll the bell until I am 5 kilometers away"and then left. However, being overwhelmingly eager to toll it, the other monks began tolling it when he was only 1.5 kilometers away.So, as the legend goes the sound of the bell can not be able to be heard any farther away.

Drive along the Beijing-Shenzhen Expressway, turn to the Yingbing Avenue at the Xingtai North Exit, go west to the Xingzhou North Road, head south down it until you come to the Guangming Street, then go west, you will arrive at the Kaiyuan Temple.

By bus, take bus No. 1 or 20 at the Xingtai Railway Station and get off at the Shoe Plant Stop.

Administrative Office of the Kaiyuan Temple: 86-319-3037834

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