Dis­cov­ery Park in China opens its doors to the world

China Daily (Canada) - - ACROSS AMERICAS - By HONG XIAO in New York xi­ao­hong@chi­nadai­lyusa.com

The world’s first Dis­cov­ery Ad­ven­tures Park in China is ready to wel­come in­ter­na­tional tourists.

The park is lo­cated in Mo­gan­shan, De­qing county, Zhe­jiang prov­ince in East China. It is a joint ef­fort by the De­qing county gov­ern­ment, Dis­cov­ery Global En­ter­prises and APAX Group, an Asian mar­ket­ing com­pany.

On Wed­nes­day in Times Square, the park wel­comed a wide range of in­ter­na­tional trav­el­ers from busi­nesses to schools to in­di­vid­u­als.

“The open­ing of the park is a re­flec­tion of China’s ex­pand­ing eco­nomic in­ter­est in out­door sports and eco-tourism,” said Ter­ence Chu, chair­man of Dis­cov­ery Ad­ven­tures Mo­gan­shan Park.

“This year we ex­pect over 6 mil­lion tourists from both sides of our two coun­tries,” said Zhang Meifang, China’s deputy con­sul gen­eral in New York. Zhang said she is sure that the park’s open­ing will “con­tinue to at­tract more tourists from around the world, not es­pe­cially from the United States”.

Cov­er­ing 1 mil­lion square me­ters of a moun­tain­ous re­gion of Mo­gan­shan, about a 2.5-hour drive from Shang­hai — the “low-car­bon, ecofriendly” park aims to chal­lenge guests with ad­ven­ture ex­pe­ri­ences.

The park fea­tures the largest climb­ing wall in China, along with zi­pline, ob­sta­cle and speed chal­lenge cour­ses. There are hot air bal­loon rides, hik­ing trails and a sur­vival course. Vis­i­tors can ride all-ter­rain ve­hi­cles and moun­tain bikes and take SUV off-road routes.

“The di­verse range of equip­ment will pro­vide the best ex­pe­ri­ence for in­di­vid­ual chal­lenge cour­ses for vis­i­tors from a wide range of ages, from chil­dren to se­niors,” said Hong Yanyan, deputy mayor of the De­qing county.

The park also helps ex­plor­ers ex­pe­ri­ence the change of sea­sons.

Mo­gan­shan is one of the AAAAlevel Na­tional Scener­ies in China and a pop­u­lar vacation spot around the Yangtze River Delta.

It is one of China’s top 10 hol­i­day des­ti­na­tions and the world’s top 25 sum­mer des­ti­na­tions.

“There is a de­mand from con­sumers to ex­pand the Dis­cov­ery ex­pe­ri­ence be­yond the screen with im­mer­sive, in­ter­ac­tive and en­gag­ing brand ex­pe­ri­ences,” said Leigh Anne Brod­sky, ex­ec­u­tive vice-pres­i­dent of Dis­cov­ery Global En­ter­prises, Dis­cov­ery Com­mu­ni­ca­tions. The Sil­ver Spring, Mary­land-based com­pany is known for such pro­gram­ming as the Dis­cov­ery Chan­nel, TLC and An­i­mal Planet.

“We are thrilled with how Dis­cov­ery Ad­ven­tures Mo­gan­shan Park has turned into a des­ti­na­tion that gives or­di­nary peo­ple the chance to chal­lenge them­selves for an ex­pe­ri­ence un­like any other,” she said.

The park, which had a soft open­ing in April for the do­mes­tic mar­ket, has be­come the largest tourist at­trac­tion in Mo­gan­shan.

“The Dis­cov­ery Ad­ven­tures Mo­gan­shan Park gives a con­tri­bu­tion to the sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment of the tourism in­dus­try in De­qing,” Hong said.

As 2016 was des­ig­nated the Year of China-US Tourism, China has in­creased its tourism in­vest­ments by 20 per­cent this year, ac­cord­ing to Hong.

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

A coach gives lessons on us­ing a zip­wire, in East China’s Zhe­jiang Provine. Leigh Anne Brod­sky, ex­ec­u­tive vi­cepres­i­dent, Dis­cov­ery Com­mu­ni­ca­tions

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