China

Forbidden City of the Chinese2Tourism in China is booming. Domestic Mainland travel is booming, and a big increase in foreign tourists is expected for the next decade. China is a very popular country for foreign tourists. People are fascinated with the different culture, the natural highlights, ancient cities, and fast modernization. China ranks third as a tourist destination country after France and the US. But if Hong Kong and Macau with his gambling for money are included, then China is the world's number one tourist destination. Nowadays, besides those classical tourist places such as Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, Guilin, Hong Kong, Tibet and Xinjiang, many other areas such as Qingdao, Harbin, Nanning etc. also gradually develop into booming tourist destinations in recent years.

Important is how countries leverage their international image to persuade others to support their interests. As such, it is crucial to assess the global appeal of China and how the Chinese government seeks to cultivate its soft power. This question explores the attractiveness of China by examining trends in inbound tourism, the impact of Chinese tourists on the economies and perceptions of the countries they visit, and how the Chinese government utilizes tourism as a political tool to further Chinese interests. Cultural tourism in the tourist sphere in China, as in many other countries, holds a high position. The country with the history numbering more than one thousand years, has a great many of monuments belonging to different dynasties ruling as far back as BC, pilgrimage destinations of Buddhism and other religions, colossal sculptures and temples, and the Great Wall of China, one of its visiting cards. Furthermore the architecture and cultural features within the country differ considerably depending on the region.

'Forbidden City' is an approximation of the Chinese 紫禁城 (Zǐjìn Chéng), a poetic moniker that also references the colour purple and the cosmically significant North Star, the ‘celestial seat’ of the emperor. But officially, it's called the Palace Museum (故宫博物馆; Gùgōng Bówùguǎn), a public institution established in 1925 after Puyi, the last emperor, was evicted from the Inner Court. Most Chinese people simply call it Gù Gōng (故宫; Ancient Palace). Travellers often want to see both China’s ancient and modern culture. Beijing and Xi’an offer the best way to explore the imperial and revolutionary past; Shanghai presents a glimpse of the future. Those interested in the natural world should head to the southern and western provinces, and consider a Yangtze River cruise for a relaxing few days at the end of a trip.

Giant Panda Breeding in Chengdu5Hundreds of years ago, the Chinese built massive stone walls around their cities to defend them from invaders. Xi’an was no exception. This city’s wall survives today, and is considered one of the most well preserved in China. The wall is 12 meters (40 feet) tall and about 15 meters (50 feet) wide at the bottom, tapering to 12 meters (40 feet) at the top. Walking on this wall is a must-do for visitors to this ancient capital of China.

No visit to China would be complete without at least one panda experience. While the country's top zoos boast many fine specimens of these fascinating creatures, the best place to see them in a close approximation to their natural habitat is at the excellent Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in Chengdu, located in the province of Sichuan. Here you'll have the chance to watch as many as 80 pandas go about their daily routines, from foraging to playing in the facility's large park-like setting. In addition to viewing these splendid animals up close, you'll learn a great deal about them from the many permanent exhibits and displays detailing ongoing conservation efforts to safeguard their future.