Sichuan, in China's western
hinterland, covers most of the Sichuan Basin. Surrounded by mountains, it is
situated at 26'03"-34'20" north latitude and 97'22"-110'10" east longitude with
an area of 567,000 square kilometers, accounting for 5.1% of China's total area.
Sichuan is high in the west and low in the east in terms of topography.
Generally speaking, the western part is plateaus and mountainous regions some
4,000 meters above sea level, while the eastern part features basin and hilly
land with an elevation between 1,000 and 3,000 meters.
The climate in Sichuan is vastly different
between its eastern and western parts. The Sichuan Basin has a humid
sub-tropical monsoonal climate, with mild winters, hot summers, long frost-free
period, plentiful rainfall and mist, high humidity, and less sunshine. Its
average temperature in July, the hottest month, is 25-29oC; in January, the
coldest month, 3-8oC. The Western Sichuan Plateau with its plateau climate has
lower temperature and less rainfall than the Sichuan Basin, both of which differ
again in the southern and northern sections of the plateau.
Administrative Division and
It is divided into 5 districts, 3 autonomous
prefectures, 13 prefecture-level cities, 18 county-level cities, 124 counties,
and 3 autonomous counties, with a population of 83.29 million as of
Sichuan Cuisine, one of the Eight Great
Cuisines in China, emphasizes the use of chili, red hot peppers and garlic.
Typical menu items are: Hot Pot, Smoked Duck, Kung Pao Chicken, Twice Cooked
Pork, Mapo Tofu. Shuizhu Niurou (steamed beef with a variety of seasonings and
spices), Yuxiang Rousi (a roast pork dish cooked with bamboo shoots, mushrooms),
Zhangcha Duck (salted, smoked duck), etc.
Chuanju (Sichuan Opera), Xieju (comic
Sichuan Province, Shu for short, is located
in southwest China, with Chengdu as its capital city. Sichuan, generally
classified as a rice region, abounds in agricultural products. It is listed as
one of China's major producers of rice, wheat, cotton, rapeseeds, raw silk,
oil-bearing crops, meat, and fruit, and also holds a significant place in
production of medicinal herbs, pigs and cattle. Sichuan's major industrial
products are metals, coal, petroleum, machinery, electric power, well salt,
chemicals, electronics, textiles and foodstuff etc.
Sichuan is known as the "Land of Abundance"
and has three places listed as the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, namely
the Jiuzhaigou Scenic Area, the Huanglong Scenic Area, and Emei Mountain
including the Leshan Giant Buddha. Visitors to this province can experience a
wide variety of beautiful landscapes including plateaus, mountains, ravines,
basins, hills, plains, rivers, lakes, hot springs, waterfalls and limestone
caves. Most of the rivers in Sichuan belong to the Yangtze River
Sichuan is gifted with lush mountains and
exquisite waters, and abounds in historical and cultural resources. Its main
scenic spots and historical sites include Emei Mountain, Qingcheng Mountain, and
Long Valley, the Dujiangyan Irrigation System, Leshan Giant Buddha, and
Jiuzhaigou (Nine-Village Valley). The Wolong Nature Reserve in Sichuan is home
to the Chengdu Giant Panda Research Base, one of the most important centers in
the world for the captive conservation of the Giant Panda.
As one of
the largest provinces, Sichuan has more than 15 minority groups living with the Han people.
Among these are the Yi, Hui, Tibetan and Miao peoples. Each of these minorities
has its own charm, ethnic style and folk custom. Some of the ethical festivals
like Leshan Great Buddha International Tourist Festival, Southland Ice and Snow
Festival, Liangshan Yi Minority Torch Festival and Zigong Lantern Festival have
become Sichuan's unique tourist resources.