Introduction of Chengdu
Chengdu is located in the western Sichuan Plain and has a rich history of over 2,300 years. As the capital of Sichuan Province, Chengdu is renowned for its fertile land and agricultural wealth, which have earned the city the nickname “Storehouse of Heaven”. It is the gateway to scenic Jiuzhai Gou, the Buddhist Mountain of Emei Shan and Le Shan, as well as home to one of the most important panda breeding centers. It is also a traveler’s haven and a place to gather information between trips. The people are friendly and the pace is unrushed. Because Chengdu is one of the few cities with daily flights to Lhasa, many travelers come here to arrange transportation to Tibet.
Spicy food, overcast skies, and a leisurely existence best describe life in Chengdu. Chengdu’s famous hotpot restaurants will leave you breathing fire, while street vendors on every corner sell spicy “Shao Kao”. Ask anyone in China about Chengdu and they will immediately rave about ’Chuan Cai’, or Sichuan cuisine. The only question they will then ask you is, “Ni pa chi la ma?”, which means, “Are you afraid of eating spicy food?”
To the west of Chengdu the steep ascension of the Tibetan Plateau begins. Chengdu enjoys a temperate climate, but the plateau moisture is to blame for the frequent cloudcover. Still, the temperature rarely drops below freezing, and the city enjoys many months of comfortable weather. Many main streets are tree lined while unused public spaces are filled with flowers and other kinds of vegetation. The natural atmosphere created by the urban vegetation sets Chengdu apart from most modernized, large cities in China. Two rivers, the Funan and the Jin (Brocade), also weave their way through the city, creating space for many pleasant riverside paths, parks, and teahouses.
Unlike most other parts of China, Chengdu locals lead atypically relaxed lives. Residents fill the sidewalks day and night drinking tea, playing mahjong, and violently slamming down cards in a three player game known as “Dou Di Zhu”. It is common to walk into a shop and have the shopkeeper or manager completely ignore you while he or she chats or plays cards with his friends or employees.
While Chengdu is as modern as any other provinical capital, the rest of Sichuan Province is not as developed. Sichuan diverse landscapes offer a range of untainted mountains, grasslands, river valleys, and lakes in an equally varied range of climates. The further west you travel in China, the less globalized the culture has become. Base your trip to Sichuan out of Chengdu and discover an incomparable city in a unparalled province.
Chengdu City Tour Video
Chengdu classical video presentation