Chongqing Fishing City (Diao Yu Fortress)

5 km east of Hechuan town, Chongqing city, the Fishing Fortress stands on the top of Diaoyu (fishing) Mountain, 391 meters high and embraced by Jialing River, Fujiang River, and Qujiang River on three sides. The steep, precipitous cliffs on all sides form a natural defense for the old town and make it almost impregnable.

This hilltop fortress, steeped in history and tradition, is one of the great ancient battlefields of China, and has long been a holy place for history and military enthusiasts.

Chongqing Fishing City tour

Fishing City War (Hechuan War)

Fishing Fortress was initially built in 1243 during the Southern Song Dynasty (1127–1279) as a key military town in Chongqing to defend against the Mongols from the north. The war lasted for 36 years, and ended with the fall of Southern Song Dynasty and the fortress commander’s final decision to surrender to Mongols.

In 1258, Mongke Khan lead the main force of Mongols to invade the South and came to Sichuan province. Although he conquered and occupied many towns and cities, the Fishing City successfully resisted the continuous attacks by the Mongols and became a renowned impenetrable fortress to withstand Mongol troops. In 1959, Mongke Khan was wounded badly in a battle when he was trying to capture Fishing City, and died soon later, which forced the immediate withdrawal of Mongol troops from all the battles in the world including those in Syria and East Asia.

Fishing City War did not only extend the reign of the Southern Song Dynasty over China, but also stop the Mongolian Empire from further expanding towards Middle East and Europe. Thus many European historians laud Chongqing Fishing City as the "Mecca of the East" and "Where God broke his whip".

Trip to Chongqing Fishing Fortress

The Fishing City Remains

Even today after hundreds of years, the ruins of the ancient battlefield of Fishing City are still well kept and blend into the precipitous yet beautiful surrounding.

The historic relics include the Fishing Terrace, Thousand Buddha Cliff, Three Saints Cliff carved in 1843, the Sleeping Buddha of late Tang dynasty - the unique hanging sleeping Buddha in China, Hu Guo (Pretending the Country) Temple first built in 1155, and the Loyal Ancestors Temple originally built in 1494. These two temples have been converted into a comprehensive museum dedicated to the glorious history of the Fishing City. Besides, there are also stone inscriptions carved by formal Chinese national leaders.

Chongqing Fishing City Remains