Chinese consumers are actively embracing domestic cultural tourism during the holidays, taking special interest in sites with historical significance, according to a new report.
The Palace Museum in Beijing is blanketed in snow in December 2019. (Photo: Xinhua)
The report, jointly released by Chinese social travel platform Mafengwo and People’s Cultural Tourism, said those who prefer cultural tourism mainly live in first-tier cities, and 40.8 percent of them live in Beijing and Shanghai. In particular, Chengdu in Sichuan province surpassed Shenzhen to gain fourth place in the ranks, showing great potential for cultural consumption.
Beijing topped all other cities in the 2019 list of popular cultural tourism destinations, followed by Shanghai, Chengdu, Hangzhou in Zhejiang province and Xi’an in Shaanxi province, the report read.
The Palace Museum in Beijing earned the top spot in the ranks of popular cultural tourism sites. Shanghai Disney Resort, Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding and Chongqing’s Hongya Cave scenic spot took second, third and fourth place respectively.
“Visits to cultural destinations helps satisfy the need for spiritual gain,”said Song Rui, director of the Tourism Research Center under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Song said today tourism is shifting from a primary stage of natural beauty to a new phase powered by cultural values.
In fact red tourism, a subset of cultural tourism that focuses on visiting key revolutionary areas, is booming in China.
According to the report, red tourism is gaining popularity in cities including Yan’an in Shaanxi province, Jian in Jiangxi province, Zunyi in Guizhou province and Zaozhuang in Shandong province, as the cities’ red destinations were crowded with tourists during the National Day holiday period last year.
China has 33,315 revolutionary sites and relics on record. Statistics show on average more than 800 million red tourism trips are made every year.