Wuhan - The Chicago of China

Wuhan is the capital of Hubei Province and a major industrial center. Wuhan actually consists of three cities: Hankou, Hanyang and Wuchang, which are separated by the Yangtze and Han Rivers. An important industrial center and transportation hub, Wuhan is known as the 'Chicago' of China. Wuhan is a popular stop-over on a Yangtze River Cruise.
Wuhan City Ratings
** The following ratings are based on a scale of 1-10, 10 being the best.
History(6) Art(3) Local Culture/Unique Tour(4)
Nature/Scenic(4)     Food/Shopping(4) Night Life(5)
Religion(2)    Adventure/Sports(4) Reasonable Cost(6)
Recommended Days of Stay: 1 Wuhan City Map


Quick Facts

Population - 7 million

When to go
Coldest Months - January and February, with temperature as low as 5C;
Hottest Months - July and August, with temperature as high as 42C;
Annual Precipitation - 1,200 millimeters (mainly from February to May)
Getting In and Out
By Air - Wuhan is a little over one hour by air from Shanghai;
By Train - Wuhan is 12 hours by train from Beijing.

History

Wuhan's history dates from the 11th century B.C. in the Shang Dynasty. The city wall surrounding Hanyang was built around 2,000 years ago and is no longer standing. The Wuchang wall was built during the Three Kingdoms period (220-265 A.D.) and part of it has survived till today.

After China lost the Opium War starting in 1861 foreign countries such as Britain, France, Russia and Japan forced concessions in Wuhan, a port city opened based on the Treaty of Nanking. In 1911, Wuchang saw the victory of the Sun Yat-sen revolution against the Qing government. Later, Wuhan became the headquarters of left wing Kuomintang. The communists took over Wuhan in 1949 and the administration of three cities in Wuhan merged shortly afterwards. In 1957, the Yangtze River Bridge was built in Wuhan, effectively joining the north and the south in China. Today, Wuhan is developing quickly as an industrial center.


Ancient Chime Bells * * * * *
A complete set of 64 graded bronze ritual bells of different sizes were found from a local tomb excavated in 1978 in the nearby Suizhou city. Weighing a total of 2,500 kilograms, the chime bells are the heaviest musical instruments in the world. When struck the bells emit a perfect 12-tone system covering five octaves. The sound quality of each bell beats any other bell in the world. Of linguistic significance are the inscriptions found on the chime bells in Zeng and Chu languages.

Hubei Provincial Museum * * * *
Located in Wuhan's university area, Hubei Provincial Museum houses important collections found from a local tomb excavated in 1978 in the nearby Suizhou city. Articles on display in the Museum include bronze, weapons, lacquer and jewelry.

Local Culture/Unique Tour
The Yangtze River Bridge at Wuhan * * *
Linking Snake Hill in Wuchang and Turtle Hill in Hanyang, the Yangtze River Bridge at Wuhan was the first steel bridge across the mighty Yangtze River. The bridge is 1,679 meters long and has eight piers and nine arches. Below the six-lane motorway on the bridge, there is a double-track railway of 14.5 meters wide. Construction of the bridge started in September of 1955 and was completed in October of 1957. From the river bed to the motorway surface, it is 80 meters in height. At each end of the bridge, there is a tower of 35 meters, installed with a lift.

Nature/Scenic
Yellow Crane Tower (Huang He Lou) * * * *
Standing 51 meters high, the five-story Yellow Crane Tower is the symbol of Wuhan. Built in 223 A.D. the Tower has been the inspiration of many poets. Situated atop Snake Hill (She Shan) in Wuchang district along the Yangtze River, the tower was originally built at a place called Yellow Crane Rock projecting over the water; hence the name. Acclaimed as an ancient historic site and scenic wonder, it is one of the three most famous towers south of the Yangtze River. Destroyed many times by fire, the tower was reconstructed in 1985 according to a picture from the Qing Dynasty. Covered with yellow glazed titles and supported with 72 huge pillars, it has 60 upturned and layered eaves. Despite its antique interior, the tower is equipped with an elevator and air-conditioning.

 

 

 
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