First national parks in China

Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park, Hainan province

Updated: Dec 13, 2021 Print
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The beautiful landscape of the Wuzhi Mountains in the Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park in Hainan province [Photo/]

One of 34 global biodiversity hotspots, the 4,269 square kilometer Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park in Hainan province is home to China's largest rainforest and the Hainan gibbon — a critically endangered species on the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

A 4,092 sq km primitive forest covers 95.85 percent of the entire park, which in turn stretches across almost all of Hainan. It is one of China's most complete rain forests and protects the region's bio-resources.

Two Hainan gibbons forage in the Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park. [Photo/]

In addition to abundant and densely distributed forest resources and the Hainan gibbons, the park is also home to 540 kinds of terrestrial vertebrates, 14 of which are under first-level state protection and 23 of which are endemic to Hainan. Its highest biodiversity index is 6.28, which is comparable to that of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil.

As many famous mountains are situated in the Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park, including the Wuzhi Mountains, the Limu Mountains, and the Diaoluo Mountains the park is called “the ridge of Hainan”, and as it is the source of the Nandu River, the Changhua River, and the Wanquan River it is also dubbed “the cistern of Hainan.”

The Li people sing folk songs in the Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park. [Photo/]

The Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park is home to 24,300 people, most of whom are from the Li and Miao ethnic groups. They have retained indigenous folk customs and a unique culture. In addition, Qiantiedong, a 60,000-year-old ancient human cave site, a boat-shaped house building technique, folk songs of Li ethnic groups, and the Sanyuesan Festival have been inscribed on the national intangible cultural heritage protection list. The Li Brocade has been named by UNESCO as one of the world’s intangible cultural heritage sites in urgent need of protection.

The Hainan Tropical Rainforest National Park values the philosophy of ecological protection, adheres to the systematic governance of mountains, rivers, forests, farmlands, lakes, and grasslands, maintains the authenticity and integrity of natural ecosystems, and protects biodiversity and ecological security barriers to provide a good-quality environment for people and leave a precious natural legacy for future generations.

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