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Luoyang

   

Located on both banks of the middle reaches of the Yellow River in the western part of Henan Province with a history spanning 5,000 years, Luoyang is one of China's seven ancient capitals. It is listed in the first group of the famous historical and cultural cities by the State Council. People call it Luoyang only because it lies on the north bank of the Luo River in the Yi-Luo River Basin and can ever obtain the sunlight. It always enjoys names of "Nine States' Hinterland" and "Ten Provinces' Thoroughfare". With one county-level city, eight counties and six districts under its jurisdiction, Luoyang has a total area of 15,208 square kilometers, including 544 square kilometers urban area and a population of 6.07 million, of which 1,3 million are in the city proper. It has an annual average temperature of 14oC. Luoyang enjoys the honorable title of the Ancient Capital of Nine Dynasties.

Judging by the historical relics, from the 21st century BC, Luoyang served as capital for 13 dynasties such as the Xia, Eastern Zhou, Eastern Han, Cao Wei, Western Jin, North Wei, Sui and Tang Dynasties for almost 1530 years I It is the earliest ancient capital with the most dynasties and the longest history in China. In the prosperous Sui and Tang dynasties, the population of Luoyang reached one million and was one of business and the most magnificent metropolises in the world.

Luoyang is one of the important cradles of Chinese civilization with profound cultural detail.. Represented by "Hetu & Luoshu", the earliest classics of Chinese Culture, the He-Luo Culture is honored as "the Ancestor of Human Root and Human Culture". The ritual and musical system of Eastern Zhou Dynasty and China's Buddhism were established here in Eastern Han Dynasty. In addition, the Ideal Philosophy was also developed here as were the earliest seismograph and artillery spheres.. It was here that the famous history books such as "the History of the Han Dynasty" and "History as a Mirror" were compiled. Literature in the Wei and Jin Dynasties flourished in Luoyang. Generally speaking, in ancient times Luoyang achieved great development in science and technology, education, literature, history and philosophy, etc. As an ancient capital of long-time brilliance and prosperity and an economic and cultural center, Luoyang has retained many marvelous cultural legacies such as sites of imperial cities, monasteries, grottoes, ancient tombs and stele. It has seven units of cultural relics under state protection, 53 under provincial protection and over 650 under county. The five ancient imperial cities built respectively in the Xia, Shang, Zhou, Han-Wei and Sui-Tang periods, ranged along the Luo River banks, are unique and very rare in the world and enjoys the title of "A Galaxy of Five Capitals in Luoyang". The Longmen Grottoes is one of the three great treasure houses of stone sculpture in China. Being the first Buddhist temple officially built after Buddhism was propagated into China, the White Horse Temple is regarded as the birthplace of China's Buddhism. There are 65 emperors and kings' ancient tombs dotting the famous Mangshan Mountain, built since the Eastern Zhou Dynasty and forming the biggest ancient tomb group in China. Here, over 400,000 valuable cultural relics have been unearthed and the world's first ancient tomb museum was built covering an area of 3 hectares. . The profound He-Luo Culture has now made Luoyang a hot tourist spot for oversea Chinese in search offamily roots and knowledge of their ancestors.

With enchanting scenery encircled by well-known mountains and hills, Luoyang and the Yi-Luo River Basin, encompass a large expanse of natural landscape in various forms and colors. To the north, are the Mother River of the Chinese nation---the Yellow River and the Xiaolangdi Reservoir Tourist Zone now under construction. To the south, stands one of the five sacred mountains in China---the Songshan Mountain and the National Forest Park---Baiyunshan Mountain, Huaguoshan Mountain and Jiguanshan Cave known as the First Karat Cave in North China. The Luoyang peony, precious and elegant, is the finest of its kind under heaven and has a planting history of 1,500 years. The flower now has more than 500 species and blooms in mid-April. "In 20 days of flowering season, the people of the city are happy and gay." The sea of flowers and the flood of visitors stir the entire city; an exceptionally grand occasion. Since 1983, the annual Peony Festival sponsored by the local government attracts millions of visitors and businessmen from home and abroad. The beautiful natural scenery and the brilliant historical culture make tourism a most promising industry in this region.