City of waters, blue sky, gardens and culture - Xiamen in Video

Updated: 2009-01-06
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Xiamen is a coastal city located in the southeast coast of China popularly known as the 'Garden on the Sea.' An early poet once described the city: 'A city leans on stones like a flower; millions of mountains embrace the sea,' which was a true portrayal of the scenery of 'Garden on the Sea.'


Xiamen has a subtropical oceanic monsoon climate, which is warm and humid, and has plenty of light, heat and rain. It is temperate, neither severely cold in winter nor intensely hot in summer.


Xiamen is surrounded by sea with vast maritime space. Big and small islands, gulfs, beaches, and reefs scatter all around. The sea and the sky become one. On the islands, there are undulating hills, strange stones scattering everywhere, lakes, reservoirs and waterfalls, which are all linked to form one of the best sceneries in the world.


The temperate climate, rich botanical resources, spring-like season all the year around, and blooming flowers together make the whole island exquisite, pretty, peculiar and artful. All of these are natural conditions richly endowed by nature for Xiamen to construct a garden city.


Xiamen City was first founded over 600 years ago, but it is rich in culture. It has varied and colorful humanistic landscapes, such as inscriptions of Ming and Qing Dynasty on precipices, ancient fort barbette used in Qing Dynasty to resist foreign aggression, western-style buildings left by 'multi-nation leased territory' in modern times, cultural relics left by the national hero of Ming Dynasty Zheng Cheng Gong and the overseas Chinese Tan Kah Kee, and colorful folk customs and culture of Fujian and Taiwan, etc.



Here on Gulangyu, a century ago this tiny islet was host to the planet's most powerful trading firms and consulates of 13 countries.Gulangyu and Xiamen were also the "Birthplace of Chinese Protestantism" with China's oldest Protestant churches.


Pioneering Medicine and Education Tour:  Known as "The Cradle of Tropical Medicine", Gulangyu was pivotal in developing both Chinese and Western modern medicine.The islet was also home to many pioneer educators (especially in women's education), and boasted over 20 institutes of learning.

Music & Arts Tour

The "Isle of Music," or "Piano Island," has more pianos per capita than any other city in China, Asia's largest piano museum, and has produced dozens of famous musicians, including world-renowned pianist Yin Chengzong, and acclaimed conductor Madame Zheng Xiaoying. The islet was also home to the famous writer Lin Yutang and artist Teng Hiok Chiu.

Architectural Tour  In 2001 alone, Gulangyu spent 7.5 million USD protecting hundreds of historic buildings in this "World Museum of Architecture."

Garden Tour  in Gulan islet
- - Shuzhuang Garden (Shuzhuang Huayuan ), the largest and includes the Piano Museum.
- - Gulangyu Aviary (Bainiao Yuan).
- - Bright Moon Garden (Haoyue Yuan ) & Koxinga Statue.
- - Yanping Park (Yanping Gongyuan ): miraculous Koxinga Well.
- - Subtropical Botanical Garden
- - Private Gardens—many historic private villas have delightful gardens.

Nanputuo Temple


Nanputuo Temple  right outside Xiamen University’s old gate, sprawls across the Five Old Man Mountains like a Chinese miniature landscape on steroids, but it started out in 686 as the humble cave dwelling of one monk.

Xiamen folk were in the throes of an unknown epidemic when Qin Hao arrived on the scene. He settled down in a cave on a hillside blessed with medicinal herbs. After his herbal brews saved the lives of many of the locals,they begged him not to leave, so he stayed on and taught Buddhism.

That original cave is still there, but decorated beyond recognition, and augmented by over 20 buildings, including the four axial halls: Heavenly Emperor Hall (Lingxiaodian),Heroic Treasure Hall (Daxiongbaodian),Great Benevolence Hall(Dabeidian),and Buddhist Scripture Repository (Cangjingge).Their scripture collection may be Nanputuo’s biggest claim to fame, with over 50,000 Buddhist scriptures—a copy of virtually every Chinese Buddhist scripture.They also have the oldest Chinese Buddhist manuscript (translated about 2000 years ago).

Nanputuo is home to about 120 monks and a few hundred statues,including the Revered Three-Life-Cycle Budda,the Four Heavenly Kings,the Eighteen Arhats, and Bodhisattva, aka the Thousand Handed Guanyin (Qianshou Guangyin ),Guanyin started out as a man and ended up female.



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