Taiyuan - capital city of Shanxi
is one of China's key heavy industry centres and capital of landlocked
Shanxi Province in North China.
It has drafted an ambitious plan to make full use of its tourist
attractions under construction. Encompassing 6,959 square kilometres,
Taiyuan has a population of 3 million.
has existed for 2,500 years and a large number of cultural relics
and ancient buildings in and around it. Despite being a heavy,
energy and chemical industry centre, Taiyuan is home to many ancient
buildings, such as the Ming Double Tower and the Tianlongshan
Grottoes. Taiyuan also has an abundance of folk culture and is
reputed for its noodles. With the implementation of the reform
and opening-up policy, there has been a significant improvement
in Taiyuan's infrastructure, such as railways, roads and telecommunications.
There are currently 43 air routes linking the city with other
parts of the country. Taiyuan has paid much attention to the development
of the tourist industry since the establishment of the Tourism
Bureau by the end of 1996. It now has about 30 tourist hotels
catering to overseas visitors. Construction of Fenhe River Tourism
Zone began in 1997. It was completed in 1999 at a cost of 400
million yuan (US$ 48 million). Another tourist zone in Shentang
Gully, costing 1.2 billion yuan (US$ 144 million), opened to the
public in 2000.