The just concluded Hunan Province Tourism Development Conference revealed that Zhanjiajie National Forest Park received 420,000 visitors from Korea last year. Statistics show eight out of ten foreign tourists were from South Korea.
One survey has revealed a great number of local shops use both Chinese and Korean on their signs, and Korean restaurants can be found throughout the city. Most vendors in the scenic area can speak at least some simple Korean to solicit tourists.
Zhang Xinmin, the general manager of Shenlong International Travel Service, who is a Korean minority, said his company receives a total of 30,000 visitors every year. According to Zhang, it is the mountain complex that attracts Koreans to Zhangjiajie.
A city hotline is now in place offering tourists local services in the Korean language. Also, the city has begun exchanging foreign currency. Direct flights from Zhangjiajie to Seoul, the capital of South Korea, have been running since early 2005.
With its beautiful landscape and the distinct ethnic groups in the area, Zhangjiajie attracts over 300 million visitors from both home and abroad each year.
(CRIENGLISH.com April 3, 2007)