Home / Environment / In Pictures Tools: Save | Print | E-mail | Most Read | Comment
County was once 'paradise on Earth'
Adjust font size:

"It is raining in Wenchuan. The county used to be a paradise on Earth As I flip through the photos taken during a trip last November, all I feel is sorrow."

A market in Wenchuan before the earthquake. A blogger likened it to paradise on Earth. 

So reads a blog by Dazhedaren about Wenchuan county in Sichuan, where more than 19,000 people have already been confirmed dead.

Wenchuan is in northwest Sichuan, about 160 km from the capital Chengdu. Before Monday's earthquake, its official population was 106,238.

Dazhedaren's blog, posted on the online forum, Tianya, tells of a two-day holiday he spent in the village of Luobozhai, which is populated mostly by people of the Qiang ethnic group.

"I fell in love with the simple three-story houses as soon as we arrived. They are built mainly of yellow soil and stones.

"This ancient village used to be the residence of the king of the Qiang ethnic people," the blogger wrote.

But he said he was most impressed by the unsophisticated, yet extremely hospitable locals.

Dazhedaren stayed overnight at the home of a young couple. His hosts fed him "a bountiful and nutritious meal, including homegrown corn and potatoes", and homemade barley beer.

"I liked the bacon the most, so I brought some home," he wrote.

He described the village, which is hidden in a valley, as resembling a phoenix spreading its wings.

He said he also loved the surrounding scenery.

"Along a zigzag narrow trail, we climbed up a hill, where we could overlook the village.

"We felt so close to the clouds and sky and far away from the hustle and bustle in the city. There were many beautiful flowers and wild fruits, although our hostess warned that some were poisonous.

"We heard boys and girls singing traditional musical dialogues that had been passed down for generations. The Qiang culture has been well preserved here."

According to one legend, Luobozhai got its nickname "Carrot Village" after a great battle.

According to the tale, the village leader was captured and his head was cut into pieces, just like people slice carrots.

Some say the legend also explains why the village produces such high-quality carrots.

According to the blog, the village is also home to one of the country's best-maintained stone watchtowers, which dates back to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

Dazhedaren is lucky to have had the chance to see the charming Qiang village, as Wenchuan was not so well known prior to the earthquake.

The county, hailed as the "south gate" of the Aba Tibetan and Qiang autonomous prefecture, is one of only four compact counties of the Qiang ethnic minority in China.

Wenchuan also boasts a scenic spot in the valley along the Minjiang River, which is home to the endangered giant panda. It is also home to the Wolong Nature Reserve and China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda.

(China Daily, Xinhua News Agency May 18, 2008)

Tools: Save | Print | E-mail | Most Read
Pet Name

China Archives
Related >>
- Telcoms being restored, but aftershocks interfere
- Wenchuan: Video taken 10 minutes after quake
- Power partly restored after 105 hours in epicenter
- Road repair makes breakthrough
- Quake-damaged road to epicenter repaired
Most Viewed >>
- Magnitude of Sichuan earthquake revised to 8.0
- Moment quake struck captured in wedding photos
- Powerful earthquake hits Sichuan Province
- Animals behave abnormally after the earthquake
- Myanmar cyclone death toll rises to 77,738
Air Quality 
Cities Major Pollutant Air Quality Level
Beijing particulate matter II
Shanghai particulate matter II
Guangzhou particulate matter II
Chongqing particulate matter II
Xi'an particulate matter II
NGO Events Calendar Tips
- Hand in hand to protect endangered animals and plants
- Changchun, Mini-marathon Aimed at Protecting Siberian Tiger
- Water Walk by Nature University
- Green Earth Documentary Salon
- Prof. Maria E. Fernandez to Give a Lecture on Climate Change
UN meets on climate change
The UN Climate Change Conference brought together representatives of over 180 countries and observers from various organizations.
Panda Facts
A record 28 panda cubs born via artificial insemination have survived in 2006.
South China Karst
Rich and unique karst landforms located in south China display exceptional natural beauty.
Saving the Tibetan Antelopes
The rare animals survive in the harsh natural environment of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.
Laws & Regulations
- Forestry Law of the People's Republic of China
- Meteorology Law of the People's Republic of China
- Fire Control Law of the People's Republic of China
- Law on Protecting Against and Mitigating Earthquake Disasters
- Law of the People's Republic of China on Conserving Energy
State Environmental Protection Administration
Ministry of Water Resources
Ministry of Land and Resources
China Environmental Industry Network
Chengdu Giant Panda Research Base