Area 486,000 square km
Population 80.762 million (2012)
Capital City Chengdu

Sichuan Geography

Sichuan Province, short for Shu, is situated in the southwest of China, embracing the eastern part of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and the Sichuan Basin. The province is 486,000 square km large with population 87.26 million (2007) consisting of different nationalities such as Han, Yi, Zang (Tibetan), Miao, Hui and Qiang. There are 32 cities, 3 minority nationality autonomous prefectures,  120 counties in Sichuan Province.

Sichuan Climate

Sichuan Province has tremendous climatic difference resulting from the physical variation. In the eastern basin it is subtropical monsoon climate characterized by warm winter and hot summer, early spring and rainy autumn. It is wet and foggy and has little sunshine. The western part of Sichuan provinces has temperate or subtropical plateau climate, while the southern part of Sichuan shows marked variation in climates in the mountains and canyons. Frost-free period in the basin is 280-330 days per year, but on the plateau is only less than 90 days. The average annual precipitation of Sichuan province is 500-1200 mm, of which the basin has much larger share than the plateau.

Brief History of Sichuan

Sichuan belong to the Kindoms of Ba and Shu.  After the first emperor of the Qin Dynasty unified China (221 B.C.), Shu and Ba Prefectures were set up in Sichuan. In 1001 (during the Song Dynasty) Sichuan was divided into four administrative zones -- Yizhoulu (for Chendu), Zizhoulu (for Santai), Lizhoulu (for Guangyuan) and Kuizhoulu (for Fengjie). These four Lu were called "four ravine lu" which is the origin of Sichuan (Sichuan in Chinese means "four ravines"). In the year of 1286 during the reign of Kublai Khan, the first emperor of the Yuan Dynasty, Sichuan was formally designated as a province.

Sichuan Local Cuisine

Sichuan food represents one of the four schools of cuisine in China. It is sour, sweet, bitter, hot, spicy, aromatic and salty. Anyone who tastes Sichuan food is deeply impressed by its strong spicy and hot flavor. Chicken in chilly sauce and fish in chilly bean sauce are the most typical hot dishes of Sichuan. No wonder some foreign dub Sichuan food "Mexican food in Chinese style". There is a great variety of Sichuan food, but braised bear's paw in brown sauce, abalone with dragon-well tea flavor, tea flavor duck and two crisp delicacies are the favority of foreign guests. In addition, chicken in piquant sauce, chicken wrapped in cellophane, shredded pork, Sichuan style, hot and spicy bean curd and marinated white gourd, etc, have a strong local flavor.

Sichuan Local Products

Rice is the main gain crop of Sichuan and its output ranks first in China. The principal cash crops are rapeseed, citrus fruit, natural silk and tong oil. Sichuan produces more rapeseed than any other province in the country. Sichuan's sugar cane, ramie, camphor, varnish, wax trees, tea and bamboo also have an important place in China's production. In the western mountainous region, there are large virgin forests of both conifer and broad leaf trees. Stock-breeding is wide spread in the province. One the western plateau, the main livestock is cattle, goat, sheep, Yak, Pianniu (hybrid cattle of bull and female yak) and horse. In the basin, pig rising is dominant. Hog bristle and casing of Sichuan Province are China's traditional exports. The mountainous region between the plateau and the basin has rich flora and fauna owing to different natural environment. It is the home of a good number of valuable birds and animals. Rare and precious trees can also be found there. Nature reserves are set up in many places.

Sichuan Places of Interests and Tourist Attractions

Memorial Temple of Zhuge Liang:Situated in the southern suburbs of Chengdu, this temple of 9.3 areas was built during the Western Jin Dynasty (A.D. 3rd century) in memory of Zhuge Liang (181-234), the Prime Minister of Kingdom of Shu and great scholar and strategist. During the Ming Dynasty it was merged with the temple of Liu Bei, the king of Shu Kingdom. The present temple buildings were built in 1,672(Qing Dynasty). The impressive and peaceful gardens represent the artistic style of the ancient Chinese architecture. In the temple there are more than 40 statues of the Kingdom of Shu, some 40 steles and stone tables, 30 plaques and a dozen or so of ancient tripods, incense burners, bells and drums.