A small city's big history

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Villagers still live in the ancient cave houses with a history of more than 1,000 years in Xiangning county, Linfen. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Linfen isn't well known despite its important place in China's past. But visitors today will discover a legacy worth exploring. 

A legendary Chinese ruler made Linfen his capital and a cradle of Chinese civilization over 4,000 years ago. But today, it's a small city and largely undiscovered travel destination in northern China's Shanxi province that's worth exploring for its historical legacy.

The city recently hosted the first Great Rivers Civilization Forum on Tourism to promote travel related to the Yellow River. The slogan was: "All travels are about leaving home; but, in Linfen, you arrive home."

"The Yellow River has sired Chinese civilization and shaped numerous places in Shanxi with natural beauty and profound culture, especially in Linfen," mayor Liu Yuqiang says.

Legendary emperor Yao (c.24th-23th centuries BC), who declared the settlement his capital, remains a symbol of the city today, much like the city was a symbol of his reign millennia ago.

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