Local culture, flowers, tourism flourish together
Residents and tourists in Qingdao were given a chance to watch street art among the blooming flowers along five travel routes across the city during this year's flower season, officials said in late April.
At a cultural festival running from April 18 to 28, the peak of Qingdao's flower season, local artists performed at about 10 squares, streets and scenic spots of Shinan district in Qingdao, where women in qipao, a traditional Chinese dress, performed dances, painters drew threed-imensional pictures on the ground and singers sang original folk songs or played instruments, according to Gao Jian, director of Shinan district.
The event is expected to contribute to development of a new growth area for the local fashion industry through a combination of tourism, arts and trade, he said.
Exhibitions of giant sakura trees and succulent plants, a poem festival, a folk customs festival, a photo contest and more were held to entertain locals and tourists, he said.
Dong Wen, associate professor of tourism at the Qingdao-based Ocean University of China, said the beauty of sakura flowers in Qingdao could be linked to its European-style buildings and seaside scenery.
"The city has big flower shows in spring. People can see sakura in Zhongshan Park, azaleas on Dazhu Mountain and peach and pear flowers on Laoshan Mountain," Dong said.
Sun Shuwei, a local tour guide with more than 20 years of experience, led photographers and tourism experts along the five travel routes, helping them to discover the unique beauty of Qingdao with his professional experience.
"Qingdao is famous for the sea, mountains, beer and seafood," Sun said. "It's also a city of flowers, especially in the Shinan district where different flowers blossom throughout the whole year, including jasmine in March, sakura and tulips in April, chrysanthemums in autumn and camellias in winter."
Flower-watching tours should be connected with the city's culture to let customers experience more, such as by including visits to museums and former residences of celebrities, Sun said.
The flower season this spring is a perfect opportunity for both residents and tourists in Qingdao to experience a wide range of activities.Wang Haibin, Chen Liang And He Qiang / For China Daily
(China Daily 04/28/2017 page12)