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Shandong's cultural heritage and natural splendor wow intl visitors

Updated: Sep 11, 2023 By Douglas Dueno in Weifang, Shandong province Print
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Paul Rutikanga (R) shows off a work he created with the help of an artist at an intangible cultural heritage exhibition in Weifang on Sept 8. [Photo provided to]

The Yellow River flows through nine cities and 25 counties in East China's Shandong province, spanning 628 kilometers before reaching the Bohai Sea. The river and the sea together nourish many dynamic cities such as Weifang, Yantai, Rizhao and Dongying in various aspects of culture, ecology and economy.

I was as thrilled as other global reporters and social media influencers from Sept 8 to 10 when we were invited to a trip to experience the high-quality cultural and tourism resources in Shandong province.

The three-day "Meeting the Sea along the Yellow River - Global Influencers Explore Shandong's Charm" event, organized by Shandong Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism, enabled us to visit three wonderful places of Weifang, Dongying and Zibo.

This fantastic trip started on Sept 8 in Weifang, a city rich in culture and urban vitality. Our delegation visited the River Harmony: 2023 Intangible Cultural Heritage Exhibition along the Yellow River Basin and the Grand Canal.

We experienced dozens of intangible cultural items, including Weifang Kites, known for intricate designs and vibrant colors, peach shell carvings, where delicate patterns are etched on fragile peach pits, and wood engraving New Year paintings, a craftsmanship that combines traditional engraving and carpentry skills.

Paul Rutikanga, a reporter from Rwanda, was awestruck by the exhibition. "I'm overjoyed to have the opportunity to witness the cultural legacies with my own eyes; it's incredible that the inheritors are confident in passing down history to future generations," he said.

We also had the opportunity to set eyes on the coastal city of Dongying, which offers biological diversity and cultural charm. The Lyuju Opera show staged on Sept 9 for us featured unique makeup and delicate moves. The wetland along our way to where the Yellow River meets the sea reflects lush greenery and is a perfect sanctuary for migratory birds.

Mohammed Al-Zouba, a Yemeni photographer, said he was amazed to learn that the number of the Oriental White Stork, once an endangered species, has doubled to over 6,000, and more and more migratory birds are choosing to stay in the Yellow River Delta National Nature Reserve in Dongying.


Expats enjoy a moment trying on costumes of Lyuju Opera and posing for a group photo with famous Lyuju Opera actors and actresses on Sept 9. [Photo provided to]


International visitors learn about biological diversity at a bird museum in Dongying on Sept 9. [Photo provided to]

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