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Monday, November 05, 2018, 15:58
Jiangxi a model for promoting ‘red tourism’
By China Daily
Monday, November 05, 2018, 15:58 By China Daily

Songcheng, in Ganzhou, Jiangxi Province was built in Song Dynasty and reconstructed in 1984. (LIU NIANHAI / FOR CHINA DAILY ASIA WEEKLY)

Located on the boundary of Jiangxi and Hunan provinces, Dajing village in Ji’an city had been a rural village on sterile land, with low grain production. Its inhabitants were impoverished, with per capita disposable income of merely 2,000 yuan. Many were forced to leave their homes to make a living elsewhere.

However, the village has since undergone vast changes, with many people returning to the village, hoping to reap a fortune from the nation’s call to develop “red tourism”.

“Red tourism” is a type of heritage tourism in which Chinese people visit locations with historical significance to Chinese communism. It has boomed since 2004 when the central government identified its importance in culture and the economy. The aim is to improve education of China’s revolutionary traditions and stimulate economic development in these areas.


The Jiangxi provincial government launched a development plan for “red tourism” in February this year with the aim of creating a “Jiangxi model” for the nation’s growing industry. It aims that by 2020, the province will be able to accommodate 240 million tourists, provide more than 500,000 jobs and rake in revenues of up to 250 billion yuan from the industry.

Currently, there are 2,300 destinations of revolutionary heritages and traditional sites in Jiangxi. According to the People’s Daily, the number of “red tourism” visitors in Jiangxi soared from 13.5 million to 143 million between 2004 and 2016, with revenues rising from 7.7 billion yuan to 115.7 billion yuan.

Dajing village has a unique location near the mountainous Jinggangshan, renowned as the “cradle of the Chinese revolution” and home to the first revolution base founded by the Communist Party of China. Chairman Mao Zedong and many senior leaders of the Red Army used to live there during the 1920s revolution.

Tourists take pictures in front of the reunion statue of former Chinese communist leaders Mao Zedong and Zhu De at Jinggangshan, considered as the “cradle of the Chinese revolution” in Jiangxi province. (PHOTO / ASIANEWSPHOTO)

The village has dug out its resources and provided tourists with interactive experience in “red tourism” in various ways. For example, tourists can walk through simulative scenes with historical importance, wearing army uniforms. They can also rest in farm houses and experience how the Red Amy lived. A variety of shows, exhibitions and campfire parties are provided for tourists to get themselves acquainted with the Party’s history.

Many local villagers joined in tour groups and provided their homes as accommodation. The village’s pillar economy has been changing from agriculture to tourism. According to a villager, a family’s average monthly earnings from agriculture amounted to less than 10,000 yuan before, but since they began providing hospitality services half a month ago, their revenues have doubled. The family expects to develop the farmland for agritainment and earning 100,000 yuan a month then would not be a problem, the villager said.

Tourists from Hong Kong visit the historical museum which is the former site of CPC Yuegan Provincial Committee in Huichang, Jiangxi province. (ZHU HAIPENG / FOR CHINA DAILY ASIA WEEKLY)

Last year, Dajing accommodated 96,000 tourists and posted revenues of 7.6 million yuan, according to Guangming Daily’s website. It has become a model of a mountainous area being transformed into a popular tourist attraction. 

Across Jiangxi province, 11 classic scenic spots will be built up as “red spirit” training bases, and six classic tourist routes will be targeted for “red tourism” development.

The province will also build 15 highways to link up with these routes. Zhu Hong, deputy director of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress in Jiangxi, said the province will develop the industry by building up signature brands on “red tourism”. On one hand, the government will enhance the network of “red” destinations supported by infrastructure and service facilities and, on the other, it will enhance competitiveness by promoting activities and creating red tourism products, Zhu said.

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