Note: Bai Ying, free-lance writer from Sydney Australia was invited by CNTO Sydney to attend the 1st China International Cultural Tourism Festival in Hunan and do FAM trip in Hunan China.
Zhangjiajie is a booming small city of Hunan. Local people told me that in early 1980’s there was only one main street there. Now you can see newly built hotels and restaurants everywhere in this city and the total population in the area has reached 1.5 million. Today, Zhangjiajie has welcomed its another opportunity of further development. The First China International Culture Tourism Festival is held in the city.
On the opening ceremony the guests appreciated colorful ethnic dancing and singing performances, obtained a brief impression of local culture.
Baofeng Lake is the first attraction I visited in Zhangjiajie. As a reservoir turned tourism attraction it’s surprisingly beautiful. There are greens all around the small lake, and protruding from the water there are several rock islands that were given different name according to their shapes. The most impressive thing there are the tour guides. Most of the tour guides are girls of Tujia ethnic group. They performed very professional and friendly, and very good at interacting with tourists. When a male tourist failed to sing correspondently with a local girl, our tour guide faked threatening to leave him on the site to practice more. She just deadpanned: ’well, according to local tradition, you’ll have to stay here until you learned enough songs.’ We can see the guy really was nervous for a short moment. In China, minority ethnic groups’ traditions are very well protected and respected, if in argument, minority ethnic people usually have certain advantage. Anyway, all of us knew it was a joke, and some people teased with the guy friendly when the trip finished.
Tianmen Fox Fairy is a real-scene musical drama that just created last year. It’s special because the stage is a whole valley. As the story progress you will find settings everywhere from the foot of the hill to the peak, be it spot lights, stage for the chorus, background houses…everything. The visual presentation is spectacular and amazing, the music is also impressive. Since this open air drama can only perform at night time, it was a little cold for us that night. Some local people brought heavy coat, to enjoy the show undistracted.
Tomorrow, we will see a karst cave Yellow Dragon Cave (Huanlongdong) and climb Tianzi Mountain. From the material I found there will have more breathtaking views.
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