SW China county eyes tourism development to consolidate progress in poverty alleviation

By Wang Yiming
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, November 23, 2020
Adjust font size:
This photo taken on Nov. 19, 2020, shows a sea of clouds in the mountains of Xichou county in southwest China's Yunnan province. [Wang Yiming/China.org.cn]

After officially alleviating poverty by April 2019, Xichou county, a picturesque location rich with ethnic minority culture in southwest China's Yunnan province, has been committed to developing rural cultural tourism.

"I hope tourism can be boosted in Tanggu village," said Lu Shunmei, a villager whose Tanggu Resort in the 3A-level tourist attraction of Xichou county has provided accommodation for tourists since 2016. Lu's two-story row house is located near the top of the Sun Hill, where women of the Zhuang ethnic group hold sacrificial activities to celebrate the "Women's Sun Festival," worshipping the sun on the first day of the second month of the lunar calendar. 

"The ‘Women's Sun Festival' has been included in the Representative List of China's National Intangible Cultural Heritage," Xie Xiaoge, first secretary of the village said, noting that funds were raised to repair the hill road leading to the platform where the rites take place so that the worshippers and tourists can better access it.

This photo taken on Nov. 19, 2020, shows the platform at the top of Sun Hill, where women of the Zhuang ethnic group hold sacrifices and worship the sun to celebrate the "Women's Sun Festival" in Xichou county in southwest China's Yunnan province. [Wang Yiming/China.org.cn]

"We plan to further develop cultural tourism in Tanggu Resort to offer travelers an immersive cultural experience of the ethnic groups, so as to fuel the village's economy," Xie said, adding, "We explored this form of tourism during the National Day holiday this year and received positive feedback from tourists who tried unique foods such as five-colored glutinous rice as well as watched a traditional bamboo dance performance and learned how to craft items."

Just down from Sun Hill lies a workshop for the production of painted ceramics featuring ethnic cultural elements. Put into operation in February 2019, the workshop provides job opportunities for local villagers. 

Li Fenghui who is responsible for running the workshop said that the villagers can make 2,500 yuan a month on average, leading many others wanting to work there. "Aside from orders from government agencies and companies under the pairing-up poverty alleviation support mechanism, tourists who walk or drive by can also buy our products. Sales of products this year reached more than 1 million yuan. We also opened an online store in October this year," Li said.

Li Fenghui, a villager of Xichou county, paints ceramics on Nov. 19, 2020. [Wang Yiming/China.org.cn]

According to the county's culture and tourism bureau, a new 2,000-square-meter workshop will be built in the Tanggu Resort in February next year to further promote the local minority culture and offer more jobs for the locals.

In addition to Tanggu Resort, Xichou county is also working on the development of Xiangpingshan Resort. Covering an area of 31.92 square kilometers, the resort boasts rich natural resources and folk customs of ethnic minorities such as the Zhuang, Miao, and Yi.

A total of 120 million yuan was invested in the development of the resort. Some entertainment projects have been completed and officially opened to tourists in October, attracting more than 10,000 tourists a day during the National Day holiday.

She Dengke, chairman of Xichou County Xiangpingshan Tourism Development Investment Co., Ltd., who invests in the resort, said that seven amusement attractions are currently in operation and a dozen other projects will be finished within the next five years. 

This photo taken on Nov. 19, 2020, shows an amusement attraction at the Xiangpingshan Resort in Xichou county in southwest China's Yunnan province. [Wang Yiming/China.org.cn]

By investing in tourist company farmland, working in resorts, providing farm stays, and selling tourism products, locals can profit from the development of rural cultural tourism, according to Jin Jialiang, head of Lianhuatang township of Xichou county, where the Xiangpingshan Resort is located.

Tourists dance around a bonfire with locals wearing traditional minority clothes on Nov. 19, 2020, at the Xiangpingshan Resort in Xichou county in southwest China's Yunnan province. [Wang Yiming/China.org.cn]

Jiang Jun, secretary of the Xichou County Party Committee, said that after rising from extreme poverty, Xichou county still needs to consolidate the progress of poverty alleviation and promote rural revitalization. 

He stressed that efforts will be made to introduce investment to build 4A-level tourist attractions and promote the development of tourism in the county.

Follow China.org.cn on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
ChinaNews App Download
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:    
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from China.org.cnMobileRSSNewsletter