Cooperation key to Sino-European tourism
Beijing authorities sign partnership agreements with Greece, promote the Chinese capital’s cultural, historical attractions
provide consulting services related to mutual tourism markets.
Zhang Hui, director of the tourism department of Beijing Jiaotong University, said tourism in China has shifted its role from a primary focus on foreign affairs to a market orientation in its past 40 years of rapid development.
“More and more people have come to realize the effect of tourism and its great comprehensive benefit to the economy, society and environment,” Zhang said.
Beijing, the political and cultural heart of China, plays an especially large role in the country’s tourism.
In recent years, the city has strived to develop tourism through the development of culture and technology, and has also made efforts to improve the environment, behavior of its citizens and availability of public services.
Liu Lang, general manager of a restaurant at Guangwai Street, Xicheng district in Beijing, has volunteered to clean the street with his staff since last year.
“Our restaurant has been in this street for more than 10 years,” Liu said. “It is clear that the environment is getting better and better and the cleanliness and beauty of the streets are owed to the efforts of everyone.”
In addition, the Beijing government has continued to improve air quality through smog management, aiming to create a better environment for residents and provide a better experience for visitors.
People have lived on the site of modern day Beijing for more than 3,000 years, and the area is home to an early example of Home erectus, known as Peking Man. It served as capital of the Liao (916-1125), Jin (1115-1234), Yuan (1271-1368), Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties and became the capital of modern China after the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949.
The capital’s history is mirrored in the spectacular architecture of its palaces, temples and parks, and many of which are considered the cultural heritage of China and the world.
The Forbidden City, the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace are listed by the United Nations as World Cultural Heritage Sites.
There are also many attractions such as the famous sections of the Great Wall including Badaling, Mutianyu and Simatai, and the world’s largest courtyard house, Prince Gong’s Palace.
Wei Xiaoan, chief expert of the World Tourism Cities Federation, said China’s traditional cultural resources are extremely rich, and cultural resources are the top priority for attracting foreign tourists.
With the development of tourism, the product is gradually enriched, and the intangible cultural heritage is widely respected, he said.
“This process is always accompanied by culture and tourism, and even natural scenic spots are trying to highlight cultural features.”