Most of Henan lies south of the Yellow River, the second longest river in China. Henan literally means "south of the river" in Chinese.
Henan is regarded as the cradle of Chinese civilization and its capital city is Zhengzhou. Two other cities, Luoyang and Kaifeng, each served as ancient Chinese capital cities during a long list of dynasties.
Henan now has nearly one hundred million people, the most populous in China. It's also China's biggest agricultural province.
Economic development has increased by an average of around ten percent each year in the past twenty year. In 2008, Henan's GDP reached 1.84 trillion yuan, or 265 billion US dollars, up 12 percent on 2007 and making it the fifth highest in the country.
Henan has much for tourists to see. It's home to the Longmen Grottos, a stop on the ancient Silk Road, as well as the Shaolin Temple and its monks renowned for practicing Shaolin martial arts.
(CCTV September 16, 2009)