Hefei, the provincial capital of Anhui (another important eastern province in China and the neighbor of Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Jiangxi, Henan and Hubei Provinces) is located in the center of China (north latitude 32° and east longitude 117°). It is situated between Yangtze River in the south and Huaihe River in the north. China’s fifth largest fresh-water lake is near to it
There are more 200 top scientific research institutes in Hefei. Nearly 100 diversities of universities and colleges are located here such as University of Science and Technology of China, whose graduated students are working all around the world. (In Wall Street, majority of Chinese staff or CEOs are graduated from this new-born but dynamic university). Except Beijing, Hefei is the densest city of national vital scientific projects. Hefei was the first testing city of scientific and technological innovation. China’s first window air-conditioning, China’s first mini-type electronic computer, China’s first monitoring laser radar for air pollution, the world’s first VCD are all born in Hefei. Nowadays, it is one of the four great scientific cities all over China.
In late 1992, Hefei became one of three Garden cities with Beijing and Zhuhai (in Guangdong Province, near to Hong Kong in Southern China). In recent years, via the establishment of big city for modernization in China, and the maintenance on the strategy of sustainable development and garden-city construction, the local people steps up virescence. The Hefei Arboretum, Wild animal zoo, Xinhua Garden as well as Peace Square, Municipal-Government Square, Bao-he Avenue and so on.
Nowadays, as the gradual realization of integration with Yangtze-River Delta economic circle and the emphasis of Central Government, it turns more and more prosperous and sparkling. It is currently a medium-size city in China bur strongly characterized of its own typical features in science and technology. Located in the eastern China, Hefei is also rich in tourism resources. The Hui Culture, the local customs and the long-standing history always present it uniqueness and attractiveness.
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Hefei is a famous ancient city with 2000-year history. It is famous as the hometown of Bao Zheng (the most upright, honest and clean-handed high official in North Song Dynasty. It is most widely respected and commemorated by the folk community. In folklore, He was tall and dark. On his forehead, there was a remarkable and congenital sign of Moon. He was China’s Rhadamanthus. He judged cases of human world in daytime and cases of hells in nighttime. Hence nowadays there are many memorial halls could be found all round China) and the notable historical site of Three-kingdom period. Since the late period of East Han Dynasty, Hefei was always acted as the important place of administrative center and military stationing. The origin of its name came from the Historical Record written by Sima Qian, China’s most famous historian in ancient China. In later period, it was also called Luzhou. After 1949, Hefei was changed to be city from a county. And soon it became the provincial capital of Anhui Province (the original capital was Anqing. The origin of Anhui came from the initials of Anqing and Huizhou). There are four urban districts and 3 counties.
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Hefei is the capital city of Anhui Province, lying between the Yangtze River and Huaihe River. It has a subtropical monsoon climate with four distinct seasons. The average annual temperature is about 15.7C (60.2F), with a high temperature of 38C (100F) in summer and a low temperature of -21C (69F) in winter.
The temperature in spring (March to April) is quite warm, but is prone to fluctuation. Although the natural landscape may be the most beautiful in spring, the rainy days make it not a suitable time to visit. The average temperature of summer (May to August) is about 28C (82F), not very hot compared with other cities in China, but it is also a rainy season. The plum rains-a period of unsettled weather with frequent, soaking rains- are a prominent feature in the summer of Hefei. Starting at the very beginning of June and ending at the end of July, it offers abundant rainfall for the place but causes some trouble for travel meanwhile. Do not forget to take your rain gear with you due to this special weather.
Compared with the other three seasons, autumn (August to October) may be the best time to have a visit, because the climate is quite favorable with crisp fall days. The winter (November to February) is a little bit cold with an average temperature of -10C (50F), so you will have to be prepared with scarf and warm clothing when you go there.
Detailed information about the Average, Maximun and Minimum Temperatures and the rainfall in Hefei
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Anhui Cuisine is one of the famous 'Eight Cuisines' of China and in the capital, Hefei, the authentic flavors can be tasted. Due to Hefei's geographic advantage, it has assembled many of the surrounding areas' flavors but still maintains the flavor of ancient Luzhou Cuisine. Visitors to Hefei can still taste the four special dishes - Luzhou Roast Duck, Lord Bao Fish, Caocao Chicken, and Li Hongzhang Hodgepodge Cuisine.
For those who have been to Beijing they have never forgotten the good taste of Beijing Roast Duck. Now when you come to Hefei, the Luzhou Roast Duck must be the first recommended cuisine by the local tour guide. Luzhou Roast Duck originally was served to the royal court as the imperial dish. Until the period of Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644) this cuisine could be found being cooked by local families. You will be attracted by the Duck's golden yellow shininess, crisp skin and tender meat. Compared to Beijing Roast Duck, it has moderate fat and salt, rich taste, and plentiful nutrients. Find the famous Luzhou Roast Duck Shop at No.107, Suzhou Road, and No. 1072 East Changjiang Road.
Lord Bao Fish is another well-known Hefei dish. This fish was originally found in a moat called Lord Bao River; hence it got the name Lord Bao Fish. This cuisine is a traditional cold dish - tender meat and dark reddish crisp skin. Caocao Chicken also called 'Xiaoyao Chicken' was said to have been liked by the Wei Emperor Caocao during the period of Three Kingdoms (220 - 420). The chicken is made with medicinal herbs, thus is good for health. These two dishes can be found in most restaurants in Hefei.
The last specialty dish called Li Hongzhang Hodgepodge Cuisine is also very delicious. It is said that this dish was an invention of the Li Hongzhang's cook once when Li Hongzhang (a minister of Qing Dynasty who was in charge of foreign affairs) treated some American guests. The raw materials in this cuisine include holothurian (sea cucumber), sleeve-fish, chicken, ham, pig liver and spinach which are all braised with chicken soup, thus it smells fragrant and tastes delicious.
In addition, Honggao (baked cake), Mabing (sesame cake), Baiqie (white sesame slices), Cunjin (sesame cookie) are recommended high quality specialties, made with refined, shelled sesames along with choice white sugar, flour and sesame oil, and treated with a special technique. Crisp, sweet, and fragrant are these cookies' characteristics.
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After visiting some scenic areas in Hefei, you will find some local souvenirs that you can buy for your friends and your family. Here, some special local products are recommended to you for your shopping guidance.
'Four Treasures of the Study' which is famous in China refers to the four tools of Chinese calligraphy including brush, ink-stick, paper and ink-stone. In Hefei, certain counties are renowned for producing some of these treasures: Jin County is renowned for producing Xuan Paper and Xuan Pen; She County is renowned for producing Hui Ink and She Inkstone. These are all available to you for your special use in Chinese calligraphy.
You may expect that the following special artistic souvenirs arouse your curiosity: Poker-picture is a rare and precious handicraft in Hefei. It was an art which originated at the end of Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and has a history of over 300 years. Using the craft of traditional Chinese painting the poker-picture is burnt by a stencil pen at high temperature. The pictures, when completed, show scenery which covers both distant and close views and also have different shades of colors. It is a special art in China.
Zhuhuang (a part of bamboo) painting is another special painting you can easily find in Hefei. It is a painting on which birds, flowers and natural landscape are painted. Zhuhuang is a smooth layer to be found inside of thick bamboo, thus the painting looks very much like satin. This characteristic is perhaps what makes the painting special. As is generally known, Chinese embroidery is very famous throughout the world. In Hefei a special kind of embroidery, called hair embroidery, will definitely draw your attention. This kind of embroidery is achieved by use of the long hair of man or animal instead of thread, and the resulting pictures show different shades of color and an elegant lustre.
For those who feel like seafood, you can buy some bags of local sea products such as Chaohu whitebait and Da-zha crab. It is known that the best Da-zha crab is produced in Yangcheng Lake located in Kunshan City, while the Da-zha crab in Hefei compares equally with it. But you have to check if these are allowed to be taken with you onboard your plane, home.
Anhui, renowned for its tea production, is the essence of Chinese tea culture. The most famous tea in Anhui is most certainly, Huangshan Maofeng which is considered one of the top ten green teas in China and, is also well-known overseas. Anhui Qihong Tea, Anhui Tun Green Tea and Anhui Houkui Tea are three other categories from which you may choose.
For those who like to eat the local snacks, you can choose to buy bags of cooked food such as Honggao (baked cake), Mabing (sesame cake), Baiqie (white sesame slices) or, Cunjin (sesame cookie). They are all tasty sweet snacks.
In Hefei when you want to go shopping, the place you should never miss is Huaihe Road Walking Street, located in the prosperous area on Huaihe Road, where many kinds of local products are sold. Women who are crazy about shopping can choose to go to Women Street located in Sanxiaokou on Changjiang Road.
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Situated in the center of Anhui Province, Hefei is a hinterland city which is in the vicinity of Chaohu Lake and between the Yangtze and Huaihe Rivers. Thanks to the water surrounding it, Hefei City is proud of its enticing natural scenery.
Baohe River Park
It is famous as a place where Bao Zheng, the rhadamanthine official in the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127), and his offspring lived. There are the Baogong’s Ancestral Shrine and Baogong’s Grave inside this interest of place, which makes it leave a good name to posterity and be respected and admired by all.
Xiaoyao Jin Park
Xiaoyao Jin is a city park occupying an area of about 200,000 square meters, 1/3 of which is water. And the whole park is divided into two parts, the east part and the west part. Xiaoyao Jin was a ferry crossing on Feishui River in ancient times. Outside the park, there are two bridges named Xijin Bridge and Xiaoyao Bridge which are Hefei’s main arteries of traffic to outside world.
The altitude of the Mountain Shu scenic spot is 284 meters. The scenes there are charming and gentle and it is beautiful throughout all four seasons. Mountain Shu is absorbing for those green and luxuriant pines and cypresses and exotic flowers and rare herbs. It is more attractive after some new scenes appear around the foot of the mountain, such as, an artificial lake with a surface area of more than 20,000 mu, a Memorial Mausoleum to the martyrs which covers 400 mu, a botanical garden and vacation village with an area of 70 hectares, the base of flowers and plantlet and Hefei Wildlife Park which cover an area of more than 80 hectares, the Mountain Shu Gallery which is 370 meters long and takes its first place in Anhui, the Sheng Xiao (Sheng Xiao refers to those twelve animals symbolizing the Twelve Branches used to designate years, according to lunar calendar) Park, Peterbo Entertainment Center for shooting paint balls, and those Cherry Garden, Chinese Rose Garden and Maple Woods which create scenes out of plants. Hefei high and new technology industrial development zone lies on the east of Mountain Shu and various modern constructions there add the rhythm of the new age to the scenic spot.
The Emperor Wu in the Liang Dynasty built an Iron Buddha Temple on the site of the religious platform for crossbows. It was rebuilt and enlarged during the years of Da Li (from 766 A.D. – 779 A.D., the period which were in the reign of Li Yu) in the Tang Dynasty and was named Mingjiao Yard and later was changed to be Mingjiao Temple in the Ming Dynasty. However, it was destroyed in wars. The Mingjiao Temple which now rises straight up on the platform majestically is the one which was rebuilt as it were by Yuan Hongmo, an old adherent of the past Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, who was then wandering and collected alms for the temple in the 11th year of the reign of Guang Xu Emperor in the Qing Dynasty (1886). Mingjiao Temple consists of three parts: Buddhist Palace, Sutra Depository and Western Chamber Park. The Buddhist Palace is composed of the front palace and the back palace and has more than 30 Buddhist statues. There are more than 30 statues of the figures of Buddha and some constructions such as the Grand Hall and the Ti-tsang Palace inside the temple. Tourists can overlook the whole city of Hefei once they mount the Ting Song Pavilion on the platform.
Qingfeng Pavilion scenery spot covers an area of 2.2 hectares. The whole pavilion is crowned with trees and the air there is perfumed with flowers. There are ancient constructions imitating those of the Song Dynasty, such as Virtue Square, Ming Yue Pavilion, Yu Zhao Fei Liang, Lian Yu Pavilion, Changfeng Studio, Qingfeng Pavilion, Art Gallery, Audiovisual Gallery and Exhibition Room and so on. Of all these constructions, the Qingfeng Pavilion is the main one. It is 42 meters high and has nine floors, 5 of which are bright and 4 of which are gloomy. There are plenty of wood-carvings, stone inscriptions and couplets hung on the columns of a hall.
The well-known Chao Lake is located in Hefei and is one of the five largest fresh-water lakes in China covering an area of about 800 square kilometers (about 309 square miles). There is an abundance of aquatic produce in the lake, amongst which the whitebait, the shrimp and the crab are known as the three treasures of Chaohu Lake. The lake is embraced by surrounding green mountains - layer upon layer of ridges and peaks. The 'moonlit night of the Chaohu Lake' and the 'morning glow of the four peaks' are two of the ancient eight top scenic spots in Luyang (present day Hefei).
With the assiduous support of the Parks' Horticulture Department, there are many parks built around Hefei City including Xiaoyaojin Park, Shushan Forest Park, Hefei Wild Animal Park, Hefei Arboretum and Huancheng Park which is the biggest among these parks covering an area of 137.6 hectares (about 340 acres). This open park connects six scenic areas which form a beautiful image of a 'Jade Necklace'. These six scenic areas are Baohe Scenic Area featuring the culture of Lord Bao; Yinhe Scenic Area featuring a waterscape; Xishan Scenic Area featuring animal sculptures; Hupotan Scenic Area featuring entertainment items, Huanbei Scenic Area featuring natural environment and wildlife and Huandong Scenic Area with a visitors' service area to enhance the garden visit. All the scenic areas contribute to Hefei ranking as one of the three 'National Park Cities' along with Beijing and Zhuhai. So, a visit to Hefei City is a must - a wonderful experience resembling visiting a pleasance.
Human Cultural Landscape
Perhaps Hui Garden, located in Hefei Economic and Technological Development Zone, is a window through which you can best learn about Anhui Province culture. It covers an area of 20 hectare (about 49 acres) around which the Yangtze and Huaihe Rivers flow. It is mainly divided into two garden areas: Wanbei area featuring Imperial gardens and Wannan area featuring the world-famous Hui Architectural Style. There are many symbolic man-made constructions in corresponding sections such as the beautiful Huangshan Mountain, the Chaolu Lake, the Di Garden, etc. Never miss the opportunity to explore Hui Garden.
If cultural scenery is more suitable to your taste, then a visit to the historical and cultural landscapes of Hefei beckons. The most famous one is called Memorial Temple of Lord Bao which is located south of the city center in Baohe Park. It is built to the memory of Bao Zheng, a well-known honorable officer of the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). The Memorial Temple of Lord Bao is a typical architectural complex built in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).
As a result of its important historical strategic position, Hefei is an area of contention among the local powers. Another cultural destination worth a visit is 'Xiaoyaojin (Leisure Ford)' a famous battlefield of the Three Kingdom Period (220 - 280) and can best elaborate its strategic importance. In this scenic area there is the Xiaoyao Lake, the Bridge of the Flying Cavalier, the Three Isles in the lake, and the Cangyou Garden.
The Former Residence of Li Hongzhang is another cultural destination which is a well preserved former home in Hefei. It is a typical residence of the south during the Qing Dynasty. Li Hongzhang was born in Hefei and held a civil and military position in the Qing Government. Here you can examine detailed materials that give comprehensive information of this eminent historical person.
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Hefei Luogang International Airport
Airport Code: HFE
Location: south of Hefei City, about 12 kilometers (7 miles) from the downtown area.
Hefei Luogang International Airport is a modern airport offering more than 20 domestic airlines. The runway of the airport is 3,000 meters (about 3281 yard) long, 60 meters (about 66 yard) wide and the Terminal Building covers an area of 12-thousand-square-meter (about 14,352 square yards). It serves domestic flights to destinations such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Qingdao, Dalian, Chengdu, Xian, Wuhan, Shenyang, Changchun, Harbin, Hangzhou, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Wenzhou, Anqing, and Huangshan, etc. Hefei Luogang International Airport, capable of receiving jumbos, has nonstop regular flights to Hong Kong.
Airport Transportation: From the airport to downtown Hefei, you can take the No.11 bus or take a taxi. The bus comes every few minutes. The bus fare is CNY1 and the taxi fare is about CNY20.
Another good choice for travel to Hefei is by train. There are two railway stations in Hefei. One is Heifei Railway Station, located in Hefei New Railway Station Comprehensive Development Experimental Zone and can be reached by city busses No.1, 10, 11, 21, and 22. The train can reach Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Ningbo, Chengdu, Nanchang, etc. The other station, Hefei Western Railway Station, is located in the west end of Wangjiang Road and can be reached by city bus No.111 from Hefei Railway Station. Both stations can reach the neighboring cities of Anhui Province such as Anqing, Bengbu, Wuhu, Haozhou, Huangshan, etc.
There are regular trains running between Hefei and Nanchang starting from Hefei Railway Station at 10:00 and arriving at Nanchang at 17:35. Another three lines passing Hefei Western Railway Station are Shanghai → Anqing, Hefei → Anqing, Hefei → Shenzhen.
By Long-Distance Bus
As the centre of the highway network of Anhui Province, Hefei is one of the main highway transportation hubs in China. The two main highways are Hefei-Nanjing-Shanghai expressway which runs east-west, and Hefei-Wuhu expressway which runs north-south. The No.206 National Highway and No.312 National Highway are joined together in Hefei, making Hefei the center of the highway network in Anhui Province.
Hefei Long-distance Bus Station
Address: No.168 at Mingguang Road
This is the biggest long-distance bus station in Hefei. The regular buses in this station are mainly to other provinces and other big cities in China such as Beijing, Tianjin, Xian, Zhengzhou, etc. You can take the following buses to arrive at the station: Dongqu No.1, Dongqu No.115, Xiqu No.118, Nanqu No.128.
Jinhu Expressway Autobus Station
This is located within the Hefei Long-distance Bus Station, thus take the following buses to arrive: Dongqu No.1, Dongqu No.115, Xiqu No.118, Nanqu No.128. The autobuses at Jinhu Expressway Autobus Station are to the surrounding cities such as Shanghai, Nanjing, Wuxi, and Nanchang.
Hefei Feiyan Bus Station
Address: Sanxiaokou at Jinzhai Road
The high-speed autobuses in this station are mainly to Shanghai, Hangzhou, Wuxi, Wuhan and Anqing.
Anhui Provincial Tour Bus Station
Address: the east side of Hefei Railway Station
The regular buses in this station are mainly to Mt. Huangshan and Mt. Jiuhuashan. The column below is for your reference:
Currently there are around 100 bus lines in Hefei City. They usually operate from early morning (06:00) till evening (20:00, or as late as 23:00). The bus fare is usually CNY1. You cannot get change on the bus, so you need to plan ahead to have the correct amount. Transportation within the city is very convenient although buses are sometime every crowded. There are regular buses to most of the scenic spots in Hefei.
If you feel tired or you want to save time, you can choose a taxi instead of the bus. At present, the fare for a taxi in Hefei is CNY6 for the first 2.5 kilometers. Subsequent kilometers differ in price according to the different styles of taxi: Santana is CNY1.2 for subsequent kilometers and Xiali is CNY1. If the taxi drives more than 10 kilometers, it will normally add 50 percent of the general fee to the cost. When the taxi drives at night between 23:00 and 05:00, an additional 20 percent allowance for night-driving is normal. According to different types of cabs, additional fare is charged differently at night: CNY1.2 per kilometers for Xiali and CNY1.44 for Santana and Fukang.
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