Located at the southeast coast of China, Xiamen is a tourist city of Fujian Province famous for its attractive seascape. As one of the major seaports since ancient times, it boasts a wide gulf with deep water but without freezing and silting. The name of 'Xiamen' was consequently given, which means 'a gate of China'. As one of the forerunners of the special economic zones of China, the city mainly consisting of Xiamen Island, Gulangyu Island, the north bank area of the Jiulong River and Tong'an County, is connected with the mainland by the Gaoji Seawall, Xiamen Bridge, etc. The city has been called the Egret Island because of the hundreds of thousands of egrets inhabiting there. This is due to the beautiful natural scenery, the fresh air and the clean environment of the city.
Being of a subtropical monsoon climate with mild weather all year round expect the typhoon months, Xiamen is an ideal tourist destination for you. It is a typical littoral city with abundant tourist attractions such as islands, mountains, temples and parks, etc., providing you with a full sightseeing schedule. The well-known Gulangyu Island, South Putuo Temple and other tourist areas like Jimei, Hulishan Battery, Wanshiyan, etc. are highly recommended. A sea tourist line is also available for you to enjoy the amazing scenery of many beautiful small islands around.
Xiamen enjoys convenient transportation. You can go there by air, by train, by coach or by sea. The transportation within the city is also satisfying. Most tourists consider the accommodation, consisting of many star rated hotels, convenient. Meanwhile there are plenty of special local products to be added to your shopping list, including various kinds of tealeaves, fruits like sugarcanes, olives and longans as well as sea products such as fish, prawns, crabs, abalones and lancelets.
Gulangyu Island is located just southwest of Xiamen City. Visitors can reach it by steamship from Xiamen City in about 5 minutes. Gulangyu Island is renowned for its delicate natural beauty, its ancient relics, and its varied architecture. The island is on China's list of National Scenic Spots and also ranks at the top of the list of the ten most-scenic areas in Fujian Province.
Gulangyu Island has about 20,000 permanent residents, all of whom enjoy a comfortable, relaxing life. Only electric-powered vehicles are permitted on the island, so the environment is free from the noise and pollution of combustion engines. Breathing the clean air, appreciating the ever-present green trees and lovely flowers, anyone here can feel like they are in heaven. With classical and romantic European-style architecture, the island truly deserves to be called the 'Architecture Museum'. It is also known as the 'Cradle of Musicians' and 'Island of Music' because of its reputation for music appreciation.
Zhongshan Road is one of the most prosperous traditional and comprehensive commercial areas in Xiamen. With a very long history, the architecture along the road is a combined style of East and West.
The large shopping centers, together with a variety of small retail stores here, are characterized by an abundance of items as well as a fairness of price, attracting many tourists. The Buses Nos.2, 3, 4, 10, 12, 23, 25, 27, and 30 pass the road, making it not only easy to get to but also so crowded that many stores are open from nine o'clock in the morning until very late at night. North and South Siming Road and Lady Street nearby are also good places for shopping.
Island Ring Road
The Island Ring Road has a length of nearly 30 kilometres, and is close to the sea. On the side near the sea, there are the Sea Rhythm Platform, the Moon-Playing Slope, the Star-Counting Garden and the Yefeng Village. The Island Ring Road is designed and forested in an artistic way which combines the sea, the beaches and the vegetated area into one, and therefore the Road becomes a spectacular scene of beauty in Xiamen. One of the most interesting ways to get to know Xiamen 's vicinity is to hire a bike and drive on the Island Ring Road. With a fresh wind in your face, the sun on your skin and a beautiful landscape to take a look at, a trip with the bicycle really means some fun. Along the Island Ring Road, you will find some major tourist attractions, such as the International Conference & Exhibition Centre, the Taiwan Folk Village, the Music Park , and Hulishan Fort. Xiamen International Marathons is held on the first Saturday of January every year since 2004. The Whole course runs largely through the scenic sections of the city, including Island Ring Road and large landscaped areas, which are flat and considered to be ideal for a marathon race.