Zhengzhou & Kaifeng Introduction
Zhengzhou is the transportation hub in Central China with Jingguang (Beijing/Guangzhou) and Longhai (Lianyungang/Lanzhou) railways crossing here. Zhengzhou has been one of the major industrial cities in China since 1949. The city's staple industry is textiles. Others manufactured items include tractors, locomotives, cigarettes, fertilizer, processed meats, agricultural machinery, and electrical equipment.
The major tourist attractions in Zhengzhou are Yellow River Sightseeing Zone, Shang Ruins and Henan Museum. Nearby city Kaifeng is also a draw to tourists, where tourists can see some more historical sites.
Once the prosperous imperial capital of China during the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1126 AD), Kaifeng is a charming city with a population of 4.9 million (0.85 million in urban area). Strategically located at the south bank of Yellow River, in history Kaifeng was chosen to be the capitals of seven different dynasties and states.
In 364 BC, the state of Wei during the Warring States Period (475-221 BC) founded a city called Daliang as its capital in this area.
Early in the 7th century, Kaifeng was transformed into a major commercial center when it was connected to the Grand Canal as well as a canal running to western Shandong Province. In 781 (Tang Dynasty), a new city was reconstructed and named Bian. Bian was the capital of the Later Jin (936-946), Later Han (947-950), and Later Zhou (951-960) of the Five Dynasties Period. The Song Dynasty made Bian its capital when it overthrew the Later Zhou in 960, and shortly afterward, they further expanded the city.
During the Song Dynasty, Kaifeng was the capital with a population of over 400,000, living both inside and outside the city wall. Kaifeng reached its peak of importance in the 11th century, when it was a commercial and industrial center at the intersection of four major canals. During this time, the city was surrounded by three rings of city walls and probably had a population of 600,000 to 700,000. It is believed that Kaifeng was the largest city in the world from 1013 to 1127.
Kaifeng is also known for having the oldest extant Jewish community in China. For more information, please visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jews_in_China.
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