Yel­low River and Great Wall shake hands here

China Daily (USA) - - LIFE | TRAVEL - And in Pian­guan, Shanxi

There’s an old say­ing in China to de­scribe the Yel­low River, its mother river by call­ing it — jiu qu, shiba wan, or ‘nine twists, 18 turns’ — be­cause it me­an­ders all over north­ern China on its lazy 5,464 kilo­me­ter run to the East Sea

Ac­com­pa­ny­ing this is an old fa­ble about how an old cow used the pow­ers that it had been granted by the gods to fur­row a mag­nif­i­cent deep river bend in Pian­guan county, Shanxi prov­ince, which leant it­self in nam­ing the area, Old Cow Bay, which has been rec­og­nized as a grand sight for cen­turies and was added to the list of China’s most beau­ti­ful val­leys by China Na­tional Ge­og­ra­phy mag­a­zine.

And, just across the river from the Shanxi side, to the north and west, and with the same high, steep loess cliffs, lies the neigh­bor­ing In­ner Mon­go­lia au­ton­o­mous re­gion, so that Old Cow Vil­lage on the Chi­nese side is the first vil­lage that the river en­ters in Shanxi prov­ince.

Now, Old Cow Bay is prom­i­nent not just for its mag­nif­i­cent view of the mother river way down be­low as it snakes its way around a large S-shaped bend. It is also, in the words of Dong Yao­hui, vice-chair­man of the China Great Wall As­so­ci­a­tion, the only place in China where “the Yel­low River ‘shakes hands’ with that won­der of the world, the Great Wall.”

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