Sichuan, called Bashu in ancient times, is located in the southwestern hinterland of China, stretching across the eastern edge of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and Sichuan Basin. With a large number of hills, crisscrossed rivers, high peaks and deep gorges, Sichuan boasts abundant products and a great number of outstanding people; hence Sichuan has been known as “The Land of Abundance”.
Sichuan has magnificent, queer, perilous and elegant natural scenic spots. Since ancient times, Sichuan has enjoyed the reputation of “embracing the most fascinating landscapes on earth”, such as Jiuzhaigou Valley, the most appealing scenic marvel; Mount Emei, known as the most elegant mountain; Qingcheng Mountain is well known for its quietness; Jianmen Pass is famous for its precipitous situation; the glaciers in Conch Valley is magnificent; and Siguniang Mountain is known as the Alps in the east. From a vast expanse of Bamboo Sea in south Sichuan to the mysterious and quiet Jiuzhaigou Valley in North Sichuan, and from the Nuoshui River in East Sichuan to Paoma Mountain in West Sichuan, natural scenic spots can be found everywhere in the province; hence Sichuan is acclaimed as “Scenic Province”.
Sichuan boasts profound cultural connotations. The splendid civilization of the past several thousand years has been vividly inserted in the scenic spots and historical sites of Sichuan. The dazzling historical sites are spread all over the province, such as the Leshan Giant Buddha, which was carved out of a cliff face; the Dujiangyan Irrigation System, an ancient water conservancy project; the hometown of Su Dongpo, a famous writer of the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127); and the former residence of Du Fu, a famous poet of the Tang Dynasty (618-907), in addition to pavilions and towers tucked away in lushly growing cypress trees. The Sun and Magic Birds excavated in Jinsha County, Sichuan Province, has been designated as the symbol of the Chinese cultural heritages.
Sichuan features varied and colorful ethnic minority customs and lifestyles. As one of the provinces in China with the most ethnic minority groups, Sichuan has been known as the “Ethnic Corridor”. According to the historical records, several dozen ethnic groups have labored, lived, multiplied and blended with each other on this land since ancient times. Sichuan is the second largest region in China where the Tibetan people live in a compact community; the larges place inhabited by the Yi people; and the only province lived by the Qiang people. In addition, over 85 percent of wild giant pandas in the world inhabit in the high mountains in Northwest Sichuan, making Sichuan become the “Home of the Giant Panda”.
When traveling in Sichuan, one thing you could not afford to miss is the appetizing Sichuan food, which is famous throughout the world and adds to the province’s charm and individuality. As compared with the cuisines of other places, Sichuan Cuisine has very distinctive characteristics. The introduction of peppers from foreign countries to China in the 16th century added the most important stroke to Sichuan Cuisine. Sichuan Cuisine also features the use of extensive materials, changeable tastes and strong adaptability.
There is an old saying in Sichuan: “When someone visits, he will not want to leave”. Recognized as one of China’s most beautiful and culturally diverse provinces, Sichuan has something to offer everyone.