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Kaifeng Travel China, Kaifeng Tour Guide

Hotels for your stay in Kaifeng    Kaifeng News
China Kaifeng City:

Resident People:
4.6 million (urban population: 801,000)

General Information:
Kaifeng is located in eastern Henan Province, kilometers south of the Yellow River and cast of the provincial capital. Unlike most other Chinese cities, its population has increased little in recent decades.

Kaifeng is located on the alluvial plains on the middle and lower reaches of the Huanghe River.

Winters in Kaifeng are cold and dry, while summers are hot and wet. Spring and autumn are the best times to visit.

Kaifeng Economy:
Kaifeng is known for its fine silks and embroidery work. It is also a commercial center serving the Huabei Plains region to the cast. New industry has been developed here since 1949, including electrical, chemical, and agricultural machinery plants, and flour and edible oil processing mills.

Kaifeng served as the capital of the State of Wei (220?265) and later as the capital of China during the Five Dynasties period (907?960). It achieved its greatest fame, however, under the Northern Song (960?1127), when it became an elegant and prosperous city. It was laid out in three concentric circles?an Imperial City, Inner City, and Outer City?a pattern later replicated in rectangular form by the Yuan Emperors in Beijing. Canals were built alongside its merchant arcades and filled with lotus blossoms.
Kaifeng was pillaged by the invading jin in 1127 and was never restored. Today all that remains of its former magnificence is a scroll painting by Zhang Zeduan (now in the Imperial Palace in Beijing) depicting the busy town center.
During the jin Dynasty (1115~ 1234), a sizable jewish population of Mediterranean origin, who migrated to China in about the 7th century, moved to Kaifeng from Hangzhou. Jewish merchants and bankers wielded significant influence in the city during the 14th and 15th centuries, when' they numbered over 1,000. Three important stelae in the town, dated 1489, 1512, and 1619, memorialize the presence of this community. By the late 19th century, the jewish presence in Kaifeng all but ceased to exist. In the 1980s, only a handful of elderly survivors?with only tenuous recollections of their Jewish roots?could be found in the city.
In 1644, attempting to defend Kaifeng against the invading Manchus, the city elders opened the dikes of the Yellow River. A disastrous flood resulted, killing over 300,000 people. Indeed, the constant flooding of the Yellow River has always been a problem here, and may explain why Kaifeng never became a major industrial center.

Kaifeng Tourism:
Kaifeng has been enlisted in the first group of historically and culturally renowned cities in China. It attracts millions of Chinese and foreign tourists each year. In the long history, although the city has gone through different kinds of hardships and difficulties, many places of historical interests have survived intact. In addition, many new places of attractions and scenic spots have been created so that tourists can enjoy more than just an ancient city.

The Night Market on Shudianjie is popular not only for shopping but also for good snack food.

Based on the royal cuisine of the Northern Song Dynasty, Kaifeng city was the birthplace of Henan cuisine. Henan dishes combine a number of different Chinese cuisine including Sichuan, Beijing and Canton styles of food. Dishes here are characterized by their salty taste and colorful appearance. The most characteristic Kaifeng dishes include Sweet and Sour Carp with Baked Noodles, the Four Treasures Wrap and Steamed Rib with Bamboo Shoot. For snack food, the best area is around the train station and the area south of Gulou Jie for Fast Food.

Kaifeng Attractive points:
Iron Tower
Erected in 1049 during the Northern Song Dynasty, the 13-story octagonal Iron Tower is situated in the Iron Tower Park in Kaifeng, 55.88 meters in height. It has been renowned for its excellent, exquisitely-designed wooden structure. The bricks with carved trenches fit together perfectly.
Dragon Pavilion
Dragon Pavilion is located in the northwest section of the city near the old town walls, marking the site of the former Song imperial stronghold. The pavilion is a pyramid?shaped building composed of several massive terraces. At one time it served as the hall where national candidates sat for the imperial civil service examinations. Its name derives from the huge stone at its center which is carved with dragons. The stone may once have served as a pedestal for the throne.
Memorial Temple of Lord Bao
Standing on the bank of a crystal-clear lake (Baogong Lake, named after Lord Bao) in the city center, is a complex of Song-dynasty buildings. Like most temples in China, the layout contains several courtyards flanked with side halls. Artificial rocks, springs and pavilions were built to enhance the surrounding scenery.
The complex is situated on a one hectare land and contains halls, pavilions, corridors and some side structures. In the Great Hall, a bronze statue of Lord Bao, three meters high, 2.5 tons in weigh, gives tourists a great impression of the revered hero. In the next hall, some epitaphs and Lord Bao's inscriptions are exhibited. In the next two halls, pictures and waxwork depicting anecdotes of Lord Bao can be found.
Lord Bao (Bao Zheng) was a Northern Song official well-known for his incorruptibility and uprightness. He was a judge renowned for his fairness in settling lawsuits and became a hero to many. Many of his heroic acts are depicted in Chinese opera and plays.
Yu Street of the Song Dynasty Capital
Yu Street was built on the north of the old Yu Street in Song Dynasty which led to the Imperial Palace. The street is a total of 400 meters long, 30 meters wide and covers a floorage area of 16,963 sq. meters. It is built next to the Longting Scenic Zone. The entire street was designed to maintain a distinctive Song Dynasty architectural style with 2 or 3 story buildings. There stand small stores row upon row as well as taller and bigger towers in an ancient style. Here you can find not only blue bricks and gray tiles, brown columns and painted beams, but also red fences and carved windows decorated with stone, brick and wooden carvings showing classic beauty and elegant tastes. The most typical structures in Yujie street would be the Corner Towers, the Fan Tower and the Memorial Archway. At the South entrance of Yujie street lies the Memorial Archway. Two Corner Towers are just on the wings of the Memorial Archway, each with stories, decorated with green glazed tiles and graphite bricks. Fan Tower is located on the west side of Yujie Street's north end, which is set up according to the description in "the Imagination Records in Dongjing. It contains five separate towers in five different directions ¡ª east, west, north, south and middle. Separate as they are, the five towers are connected to one another by suspension bridges, corridors and railings. The unique and ingenious structures deserve praise.
Yujie Street is also a cultural and entertainment center where tourists can find catering, accommodation, shopping and amusements. The horizontal inscribed boards, couplets on pillars and names of shops are predominantly adopted from certain records of the Song Dynasty. The service people and attendants all dress in costumes of the Song style, which seems to transport tourists to the ancient world.
Iron Pagoda
This beautiful 13?storey pagoda, built in 1049 under the Song, stands 53.4 m. (175 ft.) high. Although badly damaged by japanese bombings in 1938, it has been fully restored. It is entirely covered with brown glazed tiles and decorated with mythical animals and Bodhisattvas.
Yiangguo Si Monastery
The original monastery was founded in 555 AD; rebuilt several times under the Tang, Northern Song, and Ming dynasties; and completely destroyed in the flood of 1644. The current buildings, dating from 1766, used to house one of China's foremost Buddhist monasteries. The structures, completely restored, now contain a nursery school, a youth palace, a library, and other cultural facilities.
Old Music Terrace
This structure is located in a beautiful park in the southeastern section of Kaifeng. Great Tang poets such as Du Fu and Li Bai carne here to drink wine and recite poetry. Even today, the park retains its peaceful, evocative atmosphere.
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