Situated on the coast of the East China Sea
and with Taiwan in view from across the Straits, Quanzhou is the hometown of
many overseas Chinese and Taiwan compatriots. Covering a land area of 11,015
square kilometers, it has under its jurisdiction Licheng County, Fengze County,
Luojiang County, Jinjiang County, Shishi County, Nan'an County, Hui'An County,
Anxi County, Yongchun County, Dehua County, Jinmen County (to be unified) and
Quanzhou is an old city that maintains its
historical and cultural traditions, as well as a modern port city for
industries, trade and tourism. With a long history, it has accumulated rich
cultural resources and is one of the first batch 24 historical and cultural
cities proclaimed by the State Council. Quanzhou takes the lead in ocean
shipping, and even as early as in the Tang Dynasty (618-907) it had already been
one of China's four major ports of foreign trade. During the Song Dynasty
(960-1279) and the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), Quanzhou witnessed its overall
prosperity and became the break-ground port of the so-called Maritime Silk Road.
Also known as the biggest oriental port, Quanzhou has been engaged in trade with
over 100 countries and regions, creating the all-time prosperity.
There are beautiful scenes and rich human
and cultural resources in Quanzhou. It now possesses a national key resort, a
state-level natural protection zone and 50 cultural protection units, of which
12 are classified as state-level and 37 as provincial level. So many places of
interest win Quanzhou praises. It is said that to see underground relics, you
should go to Xi'an; and to appreciate aboveground scenes, go to Quanzhou.
Quanzhou is also a museum of world religions. Economic and cultural exchanges
are closely accompanied by the spread of Buddhism, Islam, Christianity
(including Catholics), Hindu, Manicheism and Judaism.