Hong Kong Cityscape
Here, a flash of red plies the nighttime waters of the South China Sea as shining skyscrapers mark the prosperity of Hong Kong. With seven million people living in its 426-square-mile (1,103-square-kilometer) region, the Asian megaport is one of the most densely populated areas in the world.
Nanjing Road, Shanghai
Photograph by Scott E. BarbourConsumers stroll along Nanjing Street, where the glow of neon signs brings colorful life to the storefronts of Shanghai’s busiest shopping district. In an effort to capitalize on a booming tourist industry, the government hopes to turn Nanjing Street into the Fifth Avenue of China.
Chinese Ballet School
Photograph by William Tadlock,Uniformed dancers begin a ballet class by completing precise movements on the barre. Friendly relations with Russia during the rule of Mao Zedong in the mid-20th century lead to the implementation of strictly regimented ballet schools for Chinese youth.
Beijing’s Forbidden City
Chinese SoldiersPhotograph by Agatha Padovani,
Ladies Market, Hong Kong
Photograph by Arkadiusz Dudzinski,Rain doesn’t discourage shoppers from navigating the hundreds of stalls lining Tung Choi Street in Kowloon, Hong Kong. Known as the Ladies Market, the bazaar offers every variety of women’s wear from to undergarments, as well as produce and housewares.
Breakfast in Chengdu
Photograph by Greg Tillman,Though China is more commonly known for its rice products, large wheat crops in the north provide plenty of flour for local bakers. Steamed buns stuffed with meat or vegetables, known as baozi, are a popular breakfast on the go.
Yu Yuan Teahouses, Shanghai
Photograph by Grant Faint, Getty ImagesNear the elaborate Chenghuang, or City God, Temple in Shanghai are the famous Yu Yuan Bazaar and Gardens. Teahouses line the main street, where tourists flock each morning to buy calligraphy, pearls, and antiques
Photograph by Fritz HoffmannThe 94th floor of the Shanghai World Financial Center tower yields an unmatched view of the city’s urban sprawl. At 1,614 feet (492 meters), the building is the tallest skyscraper in China and boasts the world’s highest observation deck on the 100th floor. The building, begun in 1997, took 14 years and more than $1 billion to create.
Photograph by Sung Ming Whang, My ShotShanghai's ever growing network of highways rings the city and links more than 500 cities across 22 provincial areas.
Jin Mao Tower, Shanghai
Photograph by Justin GuarigliaCombining Chinese architectural style with cutting-edge technology, the Jin Mao Tower boasts 88 stories that reach 1,380 feet (421 meters) into the booming Shanghai skyline. The 88th-floor Skywalk gives visitors a panoramic look at the city as well as a bird’s-eye view of the atrium spiraling down below them.
Nanjing Yangtze Bridge
Photograph by Wah Joon Cheong,A man takes an early morning stroll beneath Nanjing's Yangtze River Bridge, a point of pride for Chinese. Completed in 1968, the bridge came to symbolize the achievements of New China following the Sino-Soviet split.
Morning Exercise, Shanghai
Photograph by Justin GuarigliaEarly risers perform traditional morning exercises on the Bund, Shanghai’s famous riverfront boulevard. Stretching and low-impact exercise have been staples in Chinese culture for centuries.
Lunar New Year, Hong Kong
Photograph by Ted Aljibe, AFP/Getty ImagesWorshippers at Man Mo temple in Hong Kong light joss sticks on the second day of the Chinese Lunar New Year, praying for fortune and happiness.
Temple of Heaven Ceremony, Beijing
Photograph by China Photos/Getty ImagesA performer dressed as an emperor rehearses his steps for a Chinese Lunar New Year ceremony at the Temple of Heaven in Beijing. Ancient rulers visited the temple to pray for a good harvest.
This is a waterfall on the edge of a cliff more than a vertical mile above the Yangtze River in the mountains of the Tiger Leaping Gorge outside of Lijiang City, Yunnan, in southwestern China.
Photograph by Alvin Cheah,Rice field and houses of Dong people in Tang-an village of Guizhou Province, China
Photograph by Cathrine Koester,
A fairy tale view from the Great Wall of China, February 2010
Photograph by Priyanka Sah,
Yuanyuang rice terraces in Yunnan Province, China, 1,200 years old
Photograph by Daniel Peters,
During a pit stop in Sichuan, China, curious kids came bounding across the field to me. I was midway through a 10,000-kilometer motorbike ride to Pakistan near the border with Tibet.
Photograph by Tatum Wulff,
Sunrise in Yangshuo, Guilin, China. Yangshuo, nestled on the banks of the Li River, is known for its spectacular limestone mountains. For centuries, painters, poets, and philosophers have been drawn to this majestic location.
Photograph by William Goldman,In 2007 I journeyed through Xinjiang Province, around the Old Silk Road, going especially to the old Uygur towns. After Kashgar, I went to Lake Karakul, near the borders of Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Afghanistan. I stayed in Kyrgyz yurts, walking 30 kilometers though the desert to reach two tiny Kyrgyz villages. The lake is surrounded by snowy peaks and is very high, toward 6,000 meters. It is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been, though the people are poor
Photograph by XD Luo,
Farmers harvesting potatoes in the red soil of Wumeng region, Yunnan, southwest China
Photograph by XD Luo,
Farmers harvesting crops in red soil. The place is hidden in the mountainous Wumen region, some 180 kilometers north of Kunming, Yunnan, China.
Photograph by Courtney Canino,
This photo was taken in spring 2009 while I was in China. It is a beautiful contrast of the colors and people working. The colors of the umbrella pop against the dismal sky.
Photograph by Steve Ip,A souvenir store in Yunnan Province
Photograph by Yiwen Ren,
This photo was taken on the Songzanlin-Chaitya square, Shangri-la, Yunnan Province, China. A father took his children to participate in the chaitya.
Photograph by XD Luo,
Shenzhen River, also called Sham Chun River, flowing southwest into Shenzhen Bay, serves as the natural border between Hong Kong and mainland China. In the city of Shenzhen, on one side of the river, construction has extended to the border, while the land remains unused in the Frontier Closed Area on the Hong Kong side. This shot was taken at the top of Shun Hing Square, the highest building in Shenzhen.
Photograph by Stephan Schwaabe,
Gadan Songzanlin Lamasery in Shangri-la, Yunnan Province, China. Set in a spring-green valley, the lamasery served to control the ancient trade route going north from China to the Himalaya.
Photograph by Yang Yang,
Shanghai, known as the Eastern Manhattan, is famous for its night view and architecture. Those skyscrapers landed on the east side of the Huangpu River, which flows through the city and divides it into halves. They are the symbol of the fast development of China. Every individual who sees this would be amazed by both the view and China's economic growth.
Tanks for keeping fresh seafood for seafood restaurants at Sai Kung Pier, Hong Kong
Photograph by Jason Sawicki, My ShotI took this photo browsing through an artist village near the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China. The colorful dyes shown are applied by hand to intricately designed copper vases.
Photograph by Brian Yen,
A group of traveling Chinese opera singers came to town. They set up a temporary theatre under a bridge with bamboo sticks. They slept under the stage and put on their makeup and costumes in a tiny area behind the stage. This group performs all over China, traveling from town to town, staying perhaps a week in each place, providing traditional entertainment that would otherwise be lost to television and the Internet.
Photograph by Kenny Chu,
One of the New Year's celebration activities for the Miao nation
Photograph by Tobias Jaeger,Nathan Road in Hong Kong, China
Photograph by Lingda Jiang,Night view of NanPu Bridge, Shanghai, China
Photograph by HongMing Zhang,Young Buddhists in flowering season, China
Photograph by Yang Ting,
Taken at Mingsha Mountain in China. When the breeze blows, the wind speaks like old orchestral strings. The flag stick and the sand dunes matched.
Photograph by Staffan Holgersson,Spectacular sunset behind the tall office towers of the Lujiazui financial district and the Hongkou district in Puxi, seen from the Shanghai World Financial Center, China's tallest building
Photograph by Ribeaut Yannick,
Red fish in a koi pond in Suzhou, China
Photograph by Blaineb Barden,Recently I was fortunate enough to visit China and live within Jinan for nearly a month. While visiting, I would often take motorcycle rides out of the city and into the country to see the real beauty of the area. While riding through some winding side roads we came across this farmer heading in from a long day in the field. As he walked expressionless toward me it made for a breathless composition telling me the story of his daily routine.
This picture was taken in Hong Kong on May 12, the birthday of Tam Kung. Tam Kung is a patron saint of seafarers. He brings security and happiness to all fishermen. His birthday festival is celebrated with considerable devotion and fanfare at the Tam Kung Temple in Shau Kei Wan on Hong Kong Island, which dates from 1905
A little exercise, Hong Kong style, before work
Photograph by Quincy Wei,
Hemu Village (Kanas, Xinjiang), ranked as one of the six most beautiful villages in China, is one of the only three remaining places where the Mongolian tribe Tuwa lives. The photo was taken at dawn after rain the previous night.
Photograph by Celia Stander,Harbin Ice Festival, China
I took this picture from an air balloon in Guillin, China.
Photograph by James Manley,A deserted section of the Great Wall of China
Photograph by Bevin Roue,
China loves setting records. The lobby of the Grand Hyatt in Shanghai is on the 53rd floor. It held the record for the highest lobby in the world until the Shanghai Park Hyatt eclipsed it. This is a view of the lobby from the observation floor on the 88th floor.
Photograph by Thomas Adolphson,
While the orange "sand protection" booties might give away the fact that these are tourists visiting the Gobi desert near Dunhuang, China, the sight still gave me a sense of the Silk Road that passed through this area, carrying merchants, Marco Polo, and now, weekend vacationers from Shanghai and Beijing. There was a timelessness to the mighty dunes, the endless sky, and the wending caravans.
Photograph by Jack Seaman,
Girls in Chinese traditional Hanfu clothing celebrate the Qixi festival, the so-called Chinese Valentine's Day.
Photograph by XD Luo,
Thousands of nuns' huts built in the river valley in Garze, Sichuan Province, China. We caught the annual Great Perfection ritual there by chance. In the early morning, red-robed nuns and monks were hurrying on their way to the event location on the other side of the river.
Photograph by XD Luo,
The traditional residential buildings in the western part of Fujian Province in southeast China, Hakka earth buildings, were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. This is one of the out-of-use earth buildings in a remote village.
Forbidden City, Beijing. Presenting another angle from a magnificent palace museum. It was the imperial palace during the Ming and Qing dynasties. In 1987, it was declared a World Heritage site.
A fisherman drags nets of oysters from the turbid river water on a breathless summer day. The shot was taken in the town of Quanzhou in China's Fujian Province in June 2010.
The dragon boat festival is a tradition in China. The purpose is to commemorate Qu Yuan's death. In Guangzhou, people celebrate this festival by riding the dragon boat and setting off firecrackers. The more the firecrackers, the more the fortunes and blessings.
On the Chinese Lunar New Year's Eve, a Buddhist is filling up an oil lamp. Many pilgrims go to the temple for an invocation of divine blessing on the first day of the Chinese Lunar Year. Every oil lamp has its own special meaning.
Photograph by Rowan Bestmann,Aberdeen Cemetery hugs the hillsides, Hong Kong
- Beijing; 10,849,000
- 9,596,960 square kilometers (3,705,405 square miles)
- Chinese (Mandarin), Cantonese, other dialects and minority languages
- Taoist, Buddhist, Muslim
- Yuan, also referred to as the Renminbi
- Life Expectancy:
- GDP per Capita:
- U.S. $4,700
- Literacy Percent:
China is the world's most populous country with more than 1.3 billion people—20 percent of the Earth's population. Occupying most of East Asia, it is the fourth largest country in area (after Russia, Canada, and the U.S.). China's geography is highly diverse, with hills, plains, and river deltas in the east and deserts, high plateaus, and mountains in the west. Climate is equally varied, ranging from tropical in the south (Hainan) to subarctic in northeastern China (Manchuria).
China Facts Flag
China's geography causes an uneven population distribution; 94 percent live in the eastern third of the country. Shandong province, with its mild coastal climate, has more than 90 million people, but Tibet, with its harsh mountain plateau climate, has less than 3 million. The coastal regions are the most economically developed—acting as a magnet for an estimated 150 million Chinese migrants from the poor rural interior. This figure, from 2008, grows by an estimated 10 million Chinese each year.
China has perhaps the world's longest continuous civilization; for more than 40 centuries its people created a culture with strong philosophies, traditions, and values. The start of the Han dynasty 2,200 years ago marked the rise of military power that created an empire—one that provided a golden age in art, politics, and technology. Ethnic Chinese still refer to themselves as the "People of Han," and Han Chinese constitute 92 percent of the country's population.
Successive dynasties developed a system of bureaucratic control that gave agrarian-based China an advantage over rivals. By 2030 it's estimated that some 60 percent of the country's citizens will live in urban areas.
The first half of the 20th century saw the fall of the last Chinese emperor, Japanese invasion, World War II, and civil war between Chinese Communist and Nationalist forces—ending with the retreat of the Nationalists to Taiwan. The People's Republic of China from 1949 to 1976 imposed state control on the economy. Since 1979, China has reformed its economy and allowed competition, and today it has one of the world's highest rates of growth, averaging nearly 10 percent since the late 1970s.
Rapid industrial development has increased pollution—with China having four of the world's ten most polluted cities when it comes to air quality. The largest producer and consumer of coal, the country is turning away from coal toward clean hydroelectric resources, such as the Three Gorges Dam.
Politically China still maintains strict control over its people. Chinese rule over Tibet remains controversial, fighting with Muslim separatists in Xinjiang continues, and political issues with Taiwan remain unresolved. China regained Hong Kong from Britain in 1997 and Macau from Portugal in 1999.
In 2003 China became only the third nation (after Russia and the U.S.) to launch a manned spaceflight. The country launched a lunar orbiter in 2007 with the possibility of a manned mission to the moon by 2020.
A devastating earthquake hit Sichuan province in May 2008, leaving some 87,000 people dead or missing, injuring hundreds of thousands, and causing millions of people to lose their homes.
- Industry: Iron and steel, coal, machine building, armaments, textiles and apparel, petroleum, cement
- Agriculture: Rice, wheat, potatoes, sorghum; pork; fish
- Exports: Machinery and equipment, textiles and clothing, footwear, toys and sporting goods, mineral fuels