Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan Province – known for its spicy food – tended to be one of the smaller cities, with about 3.5 million inhabitants (about 10 million in 2020), but it is growing rapidly. Chengdu is a city that loves to consume, and its residents are said to prefer to sit in teahouses than to work.
Probably this is a rather malicious gossip since about half of Apple’s iPads are produced here. But many other industries and scientific fields are also represented in Chengdu. They still existed, the bicycles, even if the cars increasingly dominated the streetscape.
The most important sight for tourists from the west is the Panda Breeding Station. The Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding has made a name for itself in panda research worldwide. See more about our visit.
A huge statue of Mao Zedong dominates the city center. The Sichuan Science and Technology Museum dominates the background.
The streets of Chengdu in 2004 reflect the traffic of the past but probably also of the future. Bicycles still dominated, but individual car traffic increased more and more. Today, things are going in the other direction. In the future, bicycle traffic will play a much bigger role again. Private car traffic is increasingly being displaced from city centers.
A must for every Chengdu visitor is a visit of Du Fu’s Garden with the famous Du Fu Thatched Cottage, Du Fu Cao Tang. Du Fu once was a post officer in Xian. Due to his socially critical poems, he was forced to go into exile to Chengdu, where he lived for three years.
Here, he wrote his most important poems. For the Chinese, DU Fu has a similar meaning as Goethe has for the Germans.
Chengdu is also famous for its brocade weaving. In the meantime, the oldest looms should have their own museum.
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