As China continues to open its doors to the world, the country's southernmost province of Yunnan, with a population of 39 million, is revealing strong potential for tourism expansion.
Li Jiating, Yunnan's vice-governor, has described the province as rich in tourism resources, with potential for future development and said Yunnan was ready to cooperate in tourism projects with foreign countries. He claimed "tourism would quickly become an industry pillar," adding investors could set up projects such as hotels and resort, holiday villas, recreational facilities, shopping centers and high standard residential apartments.
In 1994 Yunnan attracted 520,000 international visitors and earned US$124,000 million in foreign currency. This is compared to 1979 when the province hosted a meagre 13,400 foreign visitors for a foreign currency earning of US$830,000. 1993 saw Yunnan draw some 12.5 million domestic visitors.
China views Southeast Asia as a significant potential source market for tourists, in particular to Yunnan. Over recent years the province has become China's most popular destination for Southeast Asian holiday makers. By the year 2000 a projected one million international visitors and 20 million domestic visitors from within China will travel to Yunnan. Consequently the income from foreign currency should grow to US$500 million.
Vice-governor Lijiang said there were around 90 travel routes between Yunnan and its neighbors and highlighted several railway links as well as international air links between Kunming and Hong Kong, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Yangon, Singapore and Vientiane.
A new railway from Kunmig to Nanjing should be finished in the next couple of years, plus a provincial rail link between Guangdong and Dali. There's also the possibility of a high-grade highway and railway system connecting Yunnan with Laos, Myanmar and Thailand.
The Mekong River plays an important part in both passenger and cargo transportation in Southeast Asia. Over the years China has established travel and tourist routes around the Mekong with other nations in the region and is now looking to improve the navigability of some sectors of the river, which right now are either very difficult to travel or impossible. Yunnan had applied to the Asian Development Bank, along with other countries in the region, for financial aid to improve this navigation.
The Travel Resoreces of Yunnan:
Yunnan (Beautiful Clouds in the South) Province is the most southwest region of China bordering the countries of Vietnam, Laos, and Burma. Yunnan Province borders Guizhou Province and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region to the east, Chongqing and Sichuan to the north, and Tibet Autonomous Region to the northwest. Yunnan encompasses 394,000 square kilometers (152,084 square miles) and has a population of more than 42 million people.
Within these borders, Yunnan has a diverse topography that ranges from alpine mountain ranges to tropical rainforests and the greatest number of plant species in China (more than 18,000) as well as an incredible array of animals, including the Asian elephant and the protected Yunnan golden monkey. There is even a rainforest in the area known as Xishuangbanna where you will find many rare and endangered species of plants and animals.
6 Tourist Products
On the basis of the “three lines, four places and five areas” distribution, with the superior tourist resources as its foundation and the market need as its leading factor, 6 tourist “products” have been put to the international and domestic tourist markets as follow:
Enjoy the world wonders and landscapes such as the Stone Forest and the Tiger Leaping Gorge, the plateau lakes, river canyons, snow mountains and glaciers, caves and underground rivers, plants and flowers, rare and precious animals, tropical landscapes, cultural relics and historic sites, gardens and scenic spots and so on.
Enjoy the wonderful perenial spring in Kunming, and enjoy hot—spring bath, sun bath, forest bath,etc.
Nationality Custom Tour:
Enjoy the 25 minorities’ customs, cultures and art, habits and festivals, local flavor foods, sport, etc.
Ecological tours featured by the kingdoms of animals and plants, tropical rain jungles, pastureland scenery, vertical climate and rich biological resources.
tourism involving exhibition sales, exposition, academic and professional conferences such as 1999 China Kunming International Horticultural Exposition, China Kunming International Export Commodities Trade Fair, etc.
One Center, Three lines, Four Places and Five Areas£º
“One Center”. Kunming is the tourist center of Yunnan Province, with the Stone Forest and Jiuxiang state—level scenic regions, the Dianchi Lake state—level tourist vocational resort, many distinctive parks, gardens and scenic spots as its focal points and the Anning—Stone Forest Express way as its major line. Based on the good basic facilities ,the superiority of the tourist enterprises, the superiority of the tourist training and education system, and focusing on developing the superior tourist products, accessory products and key products , Kunming now has already become a tourist area with a higher level of comprehensive reception ability and productive power. Based on China Tour Year 1997 and for building an excellent tourist city, and taking the historical opportunity of China Kunming 1999 international Horticultural Exposition, Kunming is going to be built into an international tourist city linking Southeast Asia and the Asian—Pacific region.
“There lines” or the three tourist routes£º
The Southeast Yunnab Tourist Route: Kunming—Stone Forest—Alu Ancient Cave—Puzhehei—Lubuge tour route for karst landscape sightseeing; West Yunnan Tourist Route: Kunming—Dali—Lijing—Zhongdian (including Baoshan—Tengchong—Ruli) for plateau landscape, ethnic customs, mountain gorges and volcanos and geotherms; Southwest YUnnan Tourist Route: Kunming—Simao—Xishuangbabba for tropical rain jungles, Buddhist culture, border area customs and ethnic features.
“Four places” or the four tourist sub—centers of Dali, Lijiang, Jinghong and Mangshi. According to the tourism development plan with Kunming as its center and others as sub—centers to develop tourism into a key industy, the four above—mentioned cities will be developed into important tourist distributing sub—centers.
“Five Areas” or the five tourist areas in Yunnan Province formedon the basis of three lines and four places as follows:
Central Yunnan Tourist Region with Kunming as its center; Northwest Yunnan Tourist Region with Dali and Lijiang as its center; West Yunnan Tourist Region with Baoshan and Ruli as its center; Southwest Yunnan Tourist Region with Jinghong as its center; and Southeast Yunnan Tourist Region with Jianshui; Qiubei and Luoping as its centers.
Tourist Resorts and Hot Tourist Routes
Through 20 years' development, Yunnan has formed a comprehensive tourist region with its typical routes. Now it has formed one center, three lines, four areas, five districts and six tourist products which will be continuously improved.
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