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She County - A Birthplace of Hui State Culture

Xin'anjiang River in She County

She County (shè xiàn 歙县), located in Huangshan City (huáng shān shì 黄山市) and the south of Anhui Province (ān huī shěng 安徽省). It belonged to the six counties of Hui State (huī zhōu 徽州) and was the location of Hui State Government (huī zhōu zhì fǔ 徽州治府) in ancient times. As a birthplace of Hui State Culture, it is the origin of Peking Opera (jīng jù 京剧) and a leading producer of Hui China Ink (huī mò 徽墨) and She Inkstone (shè yàn 歙砚) which belong to the four stationery treasures of the Chinese study. Anyway, it is an important county for Chinese history and culture.

 

Overview

Old Archways in She CountyShe County, situated on the south of Huangshan Mountain (huáng shān 黄山), the west of Hangzhou (háng zhōu 杭州) and the north of Thousand Islands Lake (qiān dǎo hú 千岛湖), is a really shining scenic spot. Featureing a long history and rich culture, the county used to be the political, economic and cultural center of Hui State in ancient times. Being the hometown of one of the three Chinese local cultures, it is also regarded as "Cultural State". Except for as a origin of Hui Businessmen (huī shāng 徽商), it is, as well, an important base for Hui Opera (huī jù 徽剧), Hui China Ink, Hui Inkstone and Hui Cuisine (huī cài 徽菜). In BC 221, Emperor Qin Shihuang (qín shǐ huáng 秦始皇) set it up as a county. All in all, nearly everywhere in the county, visitors can see tiny bridges and families aside a flowing river. Its simple but elegant environment is also an important factor contributing to its equal popularity with "Dunhuang Studies (dūn huáng xué 敦煌学)" and "Tibetan Studies (xī cáng xué 西藏学)". Hui Style Architecture such as pavilions and houseses is also an important and unique attraction in the country. That style came into existence at the end of the ancient Chinese society with the emerging Hui Businessmen.

 

Attractions

Xu Guo Stone Archway

Xu Guo Stone ArchwayXu Guo Stone Archway (xǔ guó shí fāng 许国石坊) is a rare stone building of Ming style (míng cháo fēng gé 明朝风格), set up in 1584. Xu Guo (xǔ guó 许国) was a Jinshi (jìn shì 进士) lasted for three emperors in Ming Dynasty (míng cháo 明朝). Due to his success in conquering Yunnan (yún nán 云南), he was appointed to be the teacher of next emperor and also a Grand Secretary. After retirement, he returned to the county, his hometown and set up the archway on which there are many honourable inscription by Dong Qichang (dǒng qí chāng 董其昌), a famous calligrapher in Ming Dynasty. On the four sides of the architecture, there are delicate engravings. The northern one is a flying dragon in order to grate the Emperor. On the inside, there is a radiant eagle and a badger signifying the young and promising Emperor, which sounds like "ying zi huan fa (yīng zī huàn fā 英姿焕发)" in Chinese. The eastern one is a fish flying over a dragon gate (lóng mén 龙门). It means that Xu Guo became well known because of his great efforts. On the inside, there are three leopards and a magpie. In Chinese it sounds like "san bao xi que (sān bào xǐ què 三抱喜鹊)". It means that Xu Guo was improved three times. The phoenix and the kylin on the south face implicate the prosperous society. On the inside, there is an eagle dancing in the sky which symbolizes Xu Guo himself. Last, on the northern face, there is a crane surrounded by cloud. It means that the society is peaceful. On the inside, a vivid deer, which is regarded as a holy animal, signifies the courtesy and honest of Xu Guo. The whole archway is made of black and blue stones. Due to its spectacular style, Xu Guo Stone Archway is considered as the "Oriental Arc de Triomphe".

 

Taibailou

TaibailouTaibailou (tài bái lóu 太白楼) is situated on the bank of Lianjiang River (liàn jiāng 练江) at the end of Taiping Bridge (tài píng qiáo 太平桥). According to the history, Li Bai (lǐ bái 李白), the God of Poetry (shī xiān 诗仙), paid visite to there in order to call on his idol poetry who was frustrated for his talent just as Li Bai. Failed to see his idol, Li Bai came to Taibailou which used to be a bar. Built at the beginning of Tang Dynasty (táng cháo 唐朝) and restored in Ming Dynasty (míng cháo 明朝) and Qing Dynasty (qīng cháo 清朝), the building is two-floored, covering more than 200 sq.m. with the middle part sticking out and the two concave wings. It is now an exhibition hall of Li Bai where a lot of antique paintings and books are shown and a picture of Li Bai himself is hanging in the main hall painted by Wang Guan (wāng guān 汪观).

Admission Fee: CNY 10

 

Shangfeng Mountain of Flowers and Fruits

Shangfeng Mountain of Flowers and FruitsShangfeng Mountain of Flowers and Fruits (shàng fēng huā guǒ shān 上丰花果山) is located in an elegant valley in Shangfeng (shàng fēng 上丰). The forest there covers more than 80% area of the whole scenic spot. It features green hills and limpid river. There are more than 10 pavilions on the bank of a 2-mile stream. The path is running circuitously down the mountain. The distribution of the local residences is in such an order that harmoniously matches the whole scenery. Besides, more than 500 old plum trees, it also enjoys many kinds of fruit trees, if not the most. A sea of tea gardens and bamboos are putting a simple statement in the attraction. Just recently, a giant granite agate stone has been discovered which are attracting a lot of curious visitors since then.

 

Yuliang Dam

Yuliang DamYuliang Dam (yú liáng bà 渔梁坝) is the oldest as well as largest dam in the county in ancient times. According to relevant researches, as early as in Tang Dynasty, the local residents piled rocks there as a dam. Being 138 meters long and 27 meters wide, the dam is made of hard stones weighted several tons each. The main function of it is to hold the water from upper reaches and slow down the speed of the river. The dam, in accordance with some experts, is built in a scientific way. There is a stele transfixing every ten stones, which is called "Ingot Snail (yuán bǎo dìng 元宝钉)". On the south of the dam, there is a mountain called Longjing Mountain (lóng jǐng shān 龙井山) while on the north, a well reserved old street.

Admission Fee: CYN 30

 

Nanqiao Tower

Nanqiao Tower Scenic AreaNanqiao Tower (nán qiáo lóu 南谯楼) was built at the end of Sui Dynasty (suí cháo 隋朝). It used to be a gatehouse of a lord for the purpose to look over distant happenings. It is also a place for striking the hours in ancient times. Oftentimes, the sound of the drum would be listened by the whole county. On the tower, there is a copper pot for timing. Actually, the tower was closed for several times because of the mountain in front of the tower whose name sounds like "Five Ghosts Mountain (wǔ guǐ shān 五鬼山)". In terms of geomantic omen, it's certainly ominous. So it was closed. However, the next leader of the county didn't believe in superstition and opened it again. Today, the tower we visite is restored by State Cultural Relic Bureau.

 

Garden of Hui Businessmen

Garden of Hui Businessmen Garden of Hui Businessmen (huī shāng dà zhái yuàn 徽商大宅院) which is also called "West Garden", is a combination of 26 nearly collapsed buildings of Hui Style (huī pài jiàn zhù 徽派建筑) scattering in the county. They are all built in Ming Dynasty and Qing Dynasty. There are an ocean of "Three Carvings" in the garden. They are stone carvings, tile carvings and wood carvings many of which have been collected during the past 20 years. Besides, the archways, stages, pavilions, gardens and waterside houses are also contributing to the magnificent scenery of the garden. Today, it is mainly used as an exhibition area of Hui Culture, for example, there are a Museum of Architecture of Hui Style, a Museum of Carving of Hui Style, a Museum of Hui Custom and a Museum Historic Figures.

Opening Hours: 8:00-17:30
Admission Fee: CNY 80

 

The Garden of the Baos'

The Garden of the Baos' (bào jiā huā yuán 鲍家花园) used to be a private garden in Ming and Qing Dynasty. It is the largest private garden for potted landscape. The Garden of the Baos'The miniascape there not only possesses the traditional Chinese style but also imitates foreign styles. Together with archways, it can be considered as the brand of Hui State. The Garden of the Baos', Garden of Humble Administrator in Suzhou (sū zhōu zhuō zhèng yuán 苏州拙政园) and Zhiyuan Garden in Wuxi (wú xī lí yuán 无锡蠡园) are the Big Three Private Garden in Jiangnan area (jiāng nán 江南). Part of the garden was ruined in the end of Qing Dynasty but was restored just the way it was. The garden was also famous for seven archways in it, which were set up to commemorate those exceedingly filial, chaste or benevolent people in the Baos'. In a word, visitors can appreciate the splendidly traditional Chinese garden while enjoying some new elements.

Transportation: take bus to the gate of Zheng Village (zhèng cūn lù kǒu 郑村路口) and then walk for about five minutes after taking an agricultural taxi which will cost CNY 10-15.
Admission Fee: CNY 80 for adults; CNY 40 for children, seniors and VIPs.
Opening Hours: 7:30-18:00

 

Gechuanjian

Gechuanjian Gechuanjian (gē chuán jiān 搁船尖) is located in Jinchuan Village (jīn chuān xiāng 金川乡). It belongs to a part of Dabie Mountain (dà bié shān 大别山). It has the most mysterious karst landform in China. It is also the relic of Manichaeism. And it is regarded as the spiritual home in the world. The stone holes on the mountain are all natural and some are invisible. The latitude of the attraction is also 30 degrees north. The name derives from a legend. It is said that, in ancient time, the Emperor of the Heaven (yù dì 玉帝) anchored his ship at this peak when confronted with flood. The well known attractions there are the quaternity stone statue of Mani. Everywhere on the mountain, visitors can find a spectacular waterfall. What's more, it is also a natural oxygen bar. Besides, in the evening you can also take part in local entertainment affairs.

Admission Fee: CNY 80
 

Last Updated on Friday, 20 May 2011 09:16
 

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