Across China: China's wellness tourism industry attracts visitors from afar

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TAIYUAN, June 10 (Xinhua) -- "Relax your body, stretch your arms and feel your heartbeat," echoed the instructor's voice as tourists hailing from 12 foreign countries engaged in Tai Chi warm-up exercises at a health resort in north China's Shanxi Province.

These tourists arrived in Jincheng, renowned as a "health and wellness demonstration city" with a well-established wellness industry and splendid natural environment, in mid-May for a month-long wellness vacation. According to the team leader surnamed Lu, this wasn't the first time foreign tourists have been attracted to China for a wellness-focused tour.

"Traditional Chinese health practices are very beneficial, and I believe they should be shared with more people outside China," said Lu, who has traveled to various European and American countries over the years, promoting traditional Chinese wellness practices.

Since 2012, Lu has been organizing wellness tours for foreign visitors to Chinese cities such as Guilin, Chengdu and Jincheng. To date, more than 60,000 people from 21 countries have joined his tours.

"This is my first time in China, and everything here exceeds my imagination. People I met on the streets smiled friendly at me, and the environment makes me feel refreshed," said Hicks William Arthur, who hails from Canada.

Speaking about his exposure to Chinese wellness culture during this trip, Arthur said that the concept of "harmony" from traditional Chinese culture left the deepest impression on him.

"Chinese culture believes that everything is interconnected, and people support each other. Therefore, we don't feel lonely in this world. This concept is helpful for those facing psychological problems," Arthur added.

Charlotte Contreras, another member of the tourist group, hails from the United States. As a psychotherapist, she found inspiration upon encountering Chinese wellness culture.

"Chinese wellness culture encompasses much ancient philosophical wisdom, which differs somewhat from modern psychological knowledge. By integrating this wisdom with the theories I'm familiar with, we can better help more patients," she said.

According to Lu, the tourists would participate in sessions based on traditional Chinese wellness culture, incorporating theories from traditional Chinese medicine, and also engage in exercises such as Tai Chi.

China's wellness industry has developed rapidly in recent years, with the country's diverse climate and geographical environment offering tourists a wide range of options.

"The well-established system of Chinese traditional wellness culture, primarily centered around traditional Chinese medicine and dietary therapy, has evolved over thousands of years and continues to attract foreign tourists who come to experience wellness in China," said Chen Bin, secretary-general of the China Tourism Commodity and Equipment Association.

"It won't be my last time in China. I'll continue to learn about traditional Chinese wellness knowledge while enjoying its beautiful natural landscapes," Arthur said. Enditem

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