Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Quanzhou, Former Asia's Largest Port City

type='html'>Shanghai has now become the world gates to enter China, the port and modernity. Did you know that 1,000 years ago China had a city like Shanghai, called Quanzhou? 

Quanzhou is a city in north Fujian, Southeast China. During the Song Dynasty (960-1279) and Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), the city is the largest port city in Asia. According to legend, a sailor and world traveler Marco Polo visited the city in the 13th century and dubbed "Alexandria of the East". 

Now, it has lost a great Quanzho with Shanghai. The city became a regular port city inhabited by eight million people. The town is in fact often escapes the tourist radar, but in it there is something interesting high value. 

For the former the largest port city in Asia, certainly has a lot Quanzho maritime heritage trail. They are saved in the Maritime Museum, and is one of the few maritime museum in China. 

Surprisingly, this is not a museum containing vessel or other maritime matters. The museum contains a collection of tombstones from the Yuan Dynasty, which describes Quanzho maritime culture of the past. 

Quanzho China was once the gateway to the west and the other east. No wonder a lot of traders who eventually settled in this city, one Muslim merchants, who left a little culture in the oriental feel. 

Islamic culture can be seen in the Ashab Mosque, built by the Arabs in 1009. The mosque is the only mosque in China that survived since the Song Dynasty. In this mosque, you can see the decorations blend Arabic and Chinese culture. 

Unlike other cities in China, Quanzhou city center is very quiet. The atmosphere is very antique, old-style buildings that are still maintained. On the side of the road, pertokoannya sell gold jewelry, as well as culinary China, such as pastry pillows and oyster omelets.

Quiet atmosphere is enhanced by the performing arts can make you relax. Every night, precisely at the Temple of Confucius, local musicians, amateurs and professionals gathered to practice Nanyin music, the oldest genre in China. 

This music was born in the Han Dynasty (202-220 BC), which is still maintained and continue dimaninkan by these musicians. Music is played with Chinese instruments, such as the bamboo flute, and the lute (China pipe). Later, the singer sang his voice with the local dialect, Minnan. One song can be sung anywhere from a few minutes up to 30 minutes. Nanyin Objects Not already a UNESCO heritage since 2003.

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