Evening Scenes of Chongqing
The Red Star Pavilion in the Pipasha Park, the Kansheng Pavilion in the Eling Park, and a place called Yikeshu on the Nanshan Mountain are vintage points for observing the nocturnal scenes of the mountain city of Chongqing. At night the entire city is inundated in an ocean of lights, which form a colorful three-dimensional painting, with waves of the Yangtze and Jialing rivers glistening against the moonlit, star spangled sky.
Sites of the Provisional Capital
Chongqing figured importantly in modem Chinese history. During the War of Resistance against Japan, it was the "provisional capital" of China under the Kuomintang rule from November 1937 to October 1945. Vestiges of that period are still there in and around the city. These include the Red Crag Village and 50 Zengjiayan, as well as Chiang Kai-shek's mansion, Guiyuan Garden, Linyuan Garden, and the mansion of C.C. Kong, the embassies of various countries to China, as well as former residences of important politicians, generals and cultural figures.
Martyrs' Mausoleum at Mount Gele
The former headquarters, radio station and prison of the Bureau of Investigation and Statistics of the Military Council (a colossal secret service of the Kuomintang) at the foot of the Gele Mountain in Shapingba District have become the mausoleum for those who died a martyr's death there in China's dark days. In the dying years of World War 11, it was the site of the "Sino0US Institute for Cooperation in Special Technology".
The Dazu Grottoes in the county of the same name is best known for the stone carvings on the Baodingshan and Beishan mountains, which are fine example of grotto sculpture in the late years of Chinese feudalism. The sculptures, done in fastidious chisel work and gracious imagery, are marked by a new sculptural language that eschews religious taboos and espouses true life.
Yangtze River's Three Gorges
Sailong down the Yangtze from Chongqing to Yichang allows visitors to see the spectacular scenery of the Three Gorges along with its splendid cultural heritage and fabled local folklore. The cruise, which combines sightseeing with scientific, artistic and folklore exploration, is a national-caliber tourist program. The 193-km-long Three Gorges, consisting of the majestic Qutangxia, statuesque Wuxia and ferocious Xilingxia gorges, is one of and ferocious Xilongxia gorges, is one of the world's major canyons. Along the way there are such scenic attractions as the Fengdu Mountain. Baidi city, Shibao village, Zhang Fel's Temple, Qu Yuan's Temple, and the Three Gorges Dam.
Diaoyu City, Hechuan
Established in 1242, or the 2nd year of the Chunyou reign of the Southern Song, Diaoyu City covers 2.5 square km up the Diaoyu Mountain on the southern shore of the Jialing River in Hechuan City's Heyang Town. In 1258, the Mongols launched a three-way attack on the Song, and in February the next year Diaoyu City found itself besieged. The Song army mounted a valiant counterattack that last3ed for 36 years, and made world war history by rebuffing a strong enemy with a weak force. This prompted some European historians to laud Diaoyu City as the "Mecca of the East" and "Where God broke his whip". The ruins of the ancient battlefield of Diaoyu City are well kept there.
Nicknamed "Less Mount Emei", Jinyun Mountain is a national scenic resort 55km from downtown Chongqing.
Furong Cave, Wulung
The Furong (Hibiscus) Cave is located by the Furong River in Wulung County. The main part of the cave is 2,700 metres in length and 3.7 square metres in area. The Splendid Cave is the most impressive. Housed in it are nearly 30 varieties of stalactites chiseled into every manner of exotic imagery by the cunning labor of nature. Major attractions are Gold Throne Hall, Leifeng Pagoda and Sky-reaching Jade Pillar.
Located at Pipashan Street, the Chongqing Museum is in the possession of more than 100,000 cultural artifacts, including 10,000 or so valuable ones.
Chongqing Nature Museum
Local natural history and fauna and flora samples are on display in the Chongqing Nature Museum in Beibei district, which includes a display room for dinosaurs that have been founding Sichuan.
Other Scenic Attractions
Other scenic attractions include the south and north Hot springs, Red Crag Village, Simian (Four-Face) Mountain, Jinfo (Golden Buddha) Mountain, Earth's Chasm at Tianjing Gorge, and Heavenly Crate at Xiaozhai village.
Three Gorges Tourist Festival
Time: June every year
Potala Palace in downtown Lhasa is a 41-hectare complex which came under construction during Songtsan Gambo's 7th-century reign. Consisting of White Palace and Red Palace, with nearly 10,000 rooms, it was where the Dalai Lamas lived and handled political affairs. Housed in this castle-like palace are a wealth of Buddhist statues, murals, religious scriptures, and treasures. As a precious legacy of Tibetan culture, the Potala Palace is a UNESCO-endorsed world cultural heritage site.
Jokhong Monastery, built in 647 as the earliest wood-masonry structure in Tibet, is dedicated to a statue of Sakyamuni. It is also in the possession of a collection of cultural relics dating back to the Tang, which include statues of Songtsan Gambo and Princess Wencheng. Tang architectural elements are palpable in this monastery, a splendid four-floor building facing west under a gilded rooftop.
A 500-year-old cultural city 3,800-metre above sea level, Xigaze is the site of Benchen Lamas' residence in the Tashilunpo Monastery. The world-famed Mount Qomolanma (8,848.13 metres) stands to the south of the city. The emblem of the city is the Tashilunpo Monastery, established in 1447, where the fourth Benchen Lama and his successors resided and conduct political activities. Covering a floorspace of 300,000 square metres, the monastery is enshrined with the world's largest gilded bronze Buddhist statue, the 22.4-metre-high statue of Champa.
Nyingchi is a prefecture in the lower reaches of Yarlung Zangbo river. At an average altitude of 3,000 metres above sea level, it is home to Monbas, Lobas and some other ethnic minorities marked for their peculiar habits and custom. Mount Namjagbarwa and the Yarlung Zangbo, 496.9 km long and 5,382 metres in maximum depth and believed to be the world's largest canyon, are the most alluring of all the tourist resources in this prefecture.
Shannan, a prefecture 3,600 metres above sea level and with a mild climate in the middle reaches of the trunk Yarlung Zangbo River, was the cradle of the Tibetans. Among Shannan's cultural relics are Samye Monastery, Tombs of Tibetan Kings (Songtsan Gambo included), Chang-zhug Temple, and Yarlung River, a mysterious and breathtaking national scenic zone that showcases Tibet's snow mountains and glaciers, idyllic pastoral farms, alpine vegetation, historical sites, and folkways.
Situated in northwest Tibet 4,500 metres above sea level (hence the "Top of the Roof of the World"), Ngari prefecture is sparsely populated and studded with lads and a paradise of such wildlife as yaks, antelopes and wild donkeys. The ruins, and the holy mountain and lake of the fable Guge Kingdom are found there.
Access to the northern Tibetan prefecture of Nagqu at an elevation of above 4,500 metres is made convenient by Xining-Lhasa Highway which runs right across it south and north. The exotic scenery of the holy lake of Namco (4,718 metres above sea level) combines with the unique lifestyle of the nomads to form an unusually idyllic landscape in this prefecture.
The charming, fertile and vast land of Qamdo Prefecture embraces Hengduan Mountain, and Jinsha, Nujiang and Lancang rivers, and holds forth the fascination of wooded mountains, dense forests, age-old history and original folkways.
Awesome mountains, an unpredictable climate, rapid rivers, alpine lakes, trackless jungles, and peculiar folklore are reasons why Tibet has caught the fancy of so many nature explorers, adventurers and mountaineers, who may contact travel services in Tibet for details of their prospective tours.
How to Get a Visa
Overseas visitors to Tibet shall process entry formalities upon showing confirmation letters issued by the Tibetan government.
Passports and Visas: The foreign tourist is granted the entry visa only when he or she holds a valid passport and a letter of visa notification for tour groups issued by a Chinese embassy in a foreign country and confirmed by the Tibetan Tourist Administration.
Entry Confirmation Letter: Overseas tour groups, those from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan included, are allowed to enter Tibet only with a confirmation letter from Tibet Autonomous Region's Tourism Administration. The administration has representative offices in Beijing, Chengdu, Golmud, Shanghai, Xining, Xi'an, Hong Kong, Kathmandu, Japan and the United States to handle group tours.