Chengdu, the capital of China's southwest Sichuan Province, is famed for being the home of cute giant pandas. Located in the west of Sichuan Basin and in the center of Chengdu Plain, the city covers a total area of 12.3 thousand square kilometers (4,749 square miles) with a population of over 11 million.
Jinsha Site Museum
Eastern Suburb Memory
As the largest comprehensive museum in southwestern China, it covers an area of 12,900 square meters with 14 exhibition halls and hosts various unique exhibits. The collections feature 260,000 items and a range of the province's historical collections can be found in the museum. The rare historical relics number no less than 60,000, of which more than 1,399 are unrivaled. Its cultural relics are generally categorized into ceramics, stone sculpture, bronze wares, pottery, ancient coins, calligraphy and paintings, folk art and crafts, stone inscription and modern works of art. All of these collections bear various stories relevant to strong Shu-Han (221 - 263AD) overtones. It is a good place for those who want to research the local history.
Located in the west of Tianfu Square, Chengdu Museum(completed in 2016) is the biggest comprehensive museum in the city with the area of 6.5 hectares (16 acres). It consists of two towers. The southern one is used for administration, while the north is mainly used for exhibition areas. There are six storeys in the north tower, one basement floor and five floors above. The basement and first floor are used as temporary exhibition halls. The history of Chengdu is shown from the second to the fourth floor. The highest floor is used for demonstrations of Puppetry and Shadow Play.
It is a site museum for the conservation, study and exhibition on Jinsha culture and ancient Shu civilization, which composed of Relics Hall, Exhibition Hall, Tourist Center, Preservation Center, Restoration Center, Jinsha Theatre and Heritage Park with total coverage of 300,000 square meters and floor area of 38,000 square meters. Moreover, it is also the modern garden-type museum with the function of education, research, and recreation, and also the symbolic landscape for the profound history of Chengdu. Jinsha Site is the first significant archaeological discovery in China at the beginning of the 21st century, and also a significant archaeological event following the discovery of the Sanxingdui site in Sichuan Province.
Covering an exhibition area of 4,000 square meters (nearly 1 acre), Sanxingdui Museum (Three-Star Piles Museum) is an archeological museum with excellent modern facilities. The cultural relics preserved here were mostly unearthed from the Three-Star Piles that is an important archeological discovery which changed the people's understanding of ancient history and culture and a place to know more about Chinese Shu culture.
Three-Star Piles refer to three earth mounds at the site and is the largest, oldest, and most connotational Shu(Sichuan) cultural relic in Sichuan. It is said that the Heavenly Emperor cast down three handfuls of earth which fell near the Jian River and became three earth mounds on Chengdu Plain. Now affirmed by modern archaeology, the three earth mounds are in reality the southern wall of an ancient city that was built of earth.
It is built on the foundations of Yongling Mausoleum, the only known above ground imperial tomb in China and widely known as the Tomb of Wang Jian (847 - 918), the founder of the Former Shu Regime in a chaotic period after the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907). Yongling Mausoleum has a circular base that measures 80 meters (262 feet) in diameter.The structure itself stands 15 meters (49 feet) tall with 14 archways made of gray bricks. It is quite well known in archeology circles. Unlike other imperial tombs, the preponderance of this tomb rises over the ground. Yongling Exhibition Hall is a three-floor modern building. It showcases the culture of the Former and the Later Shu and the rise and fall of these two regimes.
The Eastern Suburb Memory, covers an area of 282 mu and is a multi-purpose platform that brings art, music, theater, fashion, photography and other art forms into one place.
It is reconstructed from the former sites of the state-owned Hongguang Valve Factory built under the assistance of the former Soviet Union in the 1950s. The combination of industrial style and modern urbanism architecture maintain an atmosphere of nostalgia and fashion. This multicultural creative industrial park takes music as its core object to inherit the industrial civilization, and it is also an important carrier for Chengdu to accelerate the cultural industry, especially digital music, new media, cultural tourism and the incubation of double creations enterprise.
Eastern Suburb Memory
Jin Li Street
Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding
Wide and Narrow Alley
Chengdu People's Park
Leshan Giant Buddha
Doujiangyan Irrigation System
If one travels to Chengdu for the first time, Chunxi Road Pedestrian Street is a place that should not be missed. Located in Jinjiang District, this road in a broad sense covers an area of about 200,000 square meters. It is now not only the center of fashion in Chengdu, but also a place that brings together delicious snacks from all over the country.
Tianfu Square, the symbol of Chengdu, is located in the city center. Being the largest city square in southwest China, it enjoys similar position and fame in Sichuan as Tiananmen Square in Beijing. With an area of 88,368 square meters (105,687 square yards), the square is a special sight encircled by skyscrapers. It is said that one who fails to visit Tianfu Square doesn’t even visit Chengdu
Consisting of Wide Alley (Kuan Xiangzi), Narrow Alley (Zhai Xiangzi), Well Alley (Jing Xiangzi) three parallel ancient city alleys and 45 courtyards along them, it is one of Chengdu’s historical and cultural reserves and a microcosm of the city’s history as well as a deep mark in local people’s memory.
Its history can be dated back to the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911 AD).
It already has more than 1600 years of history. The wall paintings of Daci Temple are very famous. Renowned artisans such as Wu Daozi from the Tang Dynasty, Li Sheng from the early Shu Period, and Huang Qi from the late Shu Period all painted murals here. According to Tang Dynasty records, the monk Xuanzang was both ordained here and later instructed as a teacher. In the temple there is a very large exhibition on the life and times of Xuanzang. Daci Temple has a vegetarian restaurant and a teahouse. From Daci Temple, you can walk to the lively Chunxi Road.
Wenshu Monastery (Manjushri Monastery) is the best-preserved Buddhist temple in Chengdu, Initially built in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). Cultural relics are its highlights. Since the Tang and Song dynasties, over 500 pieces of painting and calligraphy by celebrities have been stored here. These precious works of art were created by renowned Chinese painters and calligraphers, including Zhang Daqian, Zheng Banqiao, and Feng Zikai. Of all the precious relics, a piece of the broken skull of Xuan Zang, a renowned monk of the Tang Dynasty, is the rarest. In addition, the monastery houses some 300 Buddha statues of various materials including iron, bronze, stone, wood, and jade, some gloriously painted.
It was listed as the World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996 and is the largest cliff rock carving Maitreya Buddha statue in the world.
In the ancient time, the water at the joint of the three rivers was very fierce and boats were often capsized here. Thus, to slow down the water flow, Monk Haitong recruited craftsmen to build the Giant Buddha since AD 713. After the efforts of three generations, the Giant Buddha was finally completed in AD 803.
It was carved from the mountain rock, with its head reaching to the mountain top and its feet standing next to the river. The total height is 71 meters; while the head is 14.7meters high and 10 meters wide, ear is 7meters high, 28 meters between knees and insteps. Its insteps can hold over a hundred people. There are 1051 spiral coils on the Buddha head, and they were all inlayed onto the Buddha head.
Doujiangyan Irrigation System
It functions not only as a flood prevention mechanism, but also as an immense source of irrigation as well as a means to facilitate shipping and wood drifting. It has contributed greatly to the accumulation of wealth in the Chengdu Plain and has helped it earn its reputation as "The Land of Affluence". It is the oldest and only surviving no-dam irrigation system in the world; and a wonder in the development of Chinese science.
Over 2,200 years ago, the city was threatened by the frequent floods caused by flooding of the Minjiang River (a tributary of the Yangtze River). Li Bing, a local official of Sichuan Province at that time, together with his son, decided to construct an irrigation system on the Minjiang River to prevent flooding. After a lengthy study and a lot of hard work by the local people, the great Dujiangyan Irrigation System was completed. Since then, the Chengdu Plain has been free of flooding and the people have been living peacefully and affluently.
It has enjoyed a reputation of Serenest Mountain under Heave since ancient time. The whole mountain is covered with evergreen forest all year round, and thus it gets this name “Qingcheng” mountain, which literally translated as “mountain of green”. It can be divided into two parts: Front Mountain covers an area of 15 square kilometers, where most historical and cultural relics are located, including Jianfu Palace, Tianshi Celestial Cave, Shangqing Palace, etc.; Rear Mountain is featured in beautiful and tranquil natural scenery, with an area about 100 square kilometers.
It is also a famous Taoist mountain for it’s one of the cradles of Chinese Taoism. The founder of Taoism – Zhao Daoling thought the tranquil and serene natural scenery was suitable for the development and prosperity of Taoism, thus, Mount Qingcheng had been listed as the “fifth Taoist fairyland” in China. It has a great historical and artistic value in researching the Taosim philosophy of China.
gochengdu.cn is the official web portal for the city of Chengdu, capital of Southwest China’s Sichuan Province.
The website serves as a platform for the people around the world to interact with the city.
Whether you are new to the city (welcome!) or call Chengdu home, the website compiles everything you need to get to know the city a little better.
From insightful things like history and culture, to helpful stuff like where to find free WiFi and travel tips, it’s time to start exploring!