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Phoenix City

Beautiful Phoenix CityPhoenix in Chinese is "Fenghuang" - a mythical bird stands for good omen and longevity. To the legend, phoenix would be re-born from the flames after it burned itself in the fire. Phoenix City, the town was so named due to a legend that two Phoenixes hovered over the town reluctant to leave when they flew over here because they were deeply attracted by its natural beauty.

Indeed, Phoenix City is located in an area of outstanding natural beauty where mountains, waters, and blue skies prevail. It is on the western boundary of Hunan Province that this place situates. Entering the town, air of mystery, elegance and primitive simplicity will impress visitors deeply. Here is a green world. A traditional Chinese painting is made up by the bridge over the water and unique houses built on stilts. This is particularly true when it was pervaded by the mist in the early morning or after rain.

Phoenix City

Phoenix City is a wonderful example of what villages were like before the onset of modernization. Dozens of alleys paved with flagstones run among houses, each showing wear and tear caused by the fleet of generations of local people who have used them when going about their daily business. For visitors, these alleys are the way to see the typical high gabled wooden houses built on stilts along the banks of the Tuo River at close quarters.

The Miao is the main ethnic group in Phoenix City and a visit to a Miao village is a must. The Miao women have a natural beauty that renders the use of cosmetics quite unnecessary. They love to dress in traditional blue garments set off with a white scarf. They also love their silver jewellery especially during festivals. Visitors will find a large array of hand made items of silver ornaments for sale in the local shops. Home made tie-dyes, printed and batik cloths are other wonderful souvenirs. The Miao are friendly and hospitable and like nothing more than to interact with Far View of Phoenix Cityvisitors with a variety of traditional entertainments and activities. Food here is different from that found elsewhere in China. Pickled red peppers are a particular local delicacy and their appetizing smell wafts from the many small family run restaurants.

Phoenix City was home to the versatile writer Shen Congwen (1902-88) who contributed greatly to the development of modern Chinese literature. Venerated by the local residents, the one time home and the tomb of this famous writer have become tourist attractions. In addition, there are two other notable people, Xiong Xiling the famous philanthropist who was the first premier of the Republic of China (1921-49) following the fall of the Manchu and Huang Yongyu, an outstanding contemporary painter in the traditional Chinese style, whose frescoes illustrating Buddhist stories in the Zhunti Nunnery are a major tourist attraction.

Phoenix City does only have natural beauty as this ancient town with a history spanning 1300 years has a number of remarkable old gardens as well as distinctive residential buildings, elegant bridges and mysterious towers and pagodas. These architectural delights date from the Ming and Qing Dynasties (1644-Overview of Phoenix City1911). Those of special interest are the Wengchen Pavilion, Huang Si Qiao Castle, Tian Wang Temple, Da Cheng Hall, Chao Yang Palace, and the tomb of Shen Congwen and the residence of Xiong Xiling. There are the North Gate and South Great Wall both excellent examples of municipal fortification, too.


Phoenix City Tour

In many ways life here has not changed and this is typified by the tough, hard working yet simple-hearted people. Phoenix City offers visitors a view of a quite different China contrast to the widely known modern cities and large conurbations. There is no doubt the opportunity to travel in such a picturesque region will be remembered as an experience of a lifetime.

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