Dragon of our fathers

Updated: 2013-01-31 09:42

By Li Yang (China Daily)

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Dragon of our fathers

Guatai Mountain in Tianshui is said to be the birthplace of Fu Xi, the forefather of early Chinese civilization. [Photos by Li Yongsheng / For China Daily]

Dragon of our fathers

Fu Xi Temple, built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), is a must-see in Tianshui. [Photo/Provided to China Daily]

Dragon of our fathers

The dragon is the most prominent pattern on the carved window lattice in Fu Xi Temple.

Dragon of our fathers

A statue of Fu Xi is the centerpiece in the 500-year-old temple.


A trip to Northwest China offers fresh air and a connection to the roots of Chinese philosophy, Li Yang reports from Tianshui, Gansu province.

My three-day trip to Tianshui in Gansu province is a refreshing getaway from Beijing's lingering smoggy air - not only for my lungs but also my mind. With its crystal-clear blue sky and fresh clean air, this remote city seems to me more suitable for living than the country's capital.

Many places in Gansu are named for their military purposes in history, as for centuries the area bordered frontier territories.

But Tianshui, which means "sky water", is an exception.

Located in the southeast end of Gansu, Tianshui has prospered for about 2,700 years as an agricultural center nestled in the fertile valley of the Weihe River, the largest branch of the Yellow River.

More importantly, it is one of the cradles of the country's civilization.

Also known as Longcheng, or Dragon City, Tianshui is the hometown of Fu Xi, one of the earliest and most important rulers in Chinese lore. Unearthed relics in Tianshui show that Fu Xi was a real-life tribal leader living about 7,800 years ago.

There is a big temple for Fu Xi built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) in the city center. Guatai Mountain, where he was born and worked, is now a tourist attraction located near the Weihe River in the north of the city.

Dragon of our fathers

Dragon of our fathers

Trip to water town Zhouzhuang, China's Jiangsu

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