Located in the middle reaches of the Xiang River in the Hunan Province, China is the charming city of Xiangtan. Being the hometown of Chairman Mao Zedong and other party officials like Peng Dehuai and Liu Shaoqi, the city has always been a prosperous urban area and a political and cultural center. The river’s waterways made it an economic and business hub of the province along with Changsha and Zhuzhou.
Xiangtan City has a history of education and talent and has produced several famous personalities of China besides political figures. Peng Shuai the tennis player, Qi Baishi the painter, and Zeng Guofan the scholarly general also hailed from Xiangtan and brought it on the world map with their fame.
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Mount Shaoshan Scenic Area – This scenic spot in Xiangtan City is more famous as the hometown of the Communist Party Chairman Mao Zedong. It consists of the former residence of the Chairman which is surrounded by beautiful lush greenery, ponds, statues, and more. This is the place where the Chairman began his revolutionary activities until the movement achieved its ultimate goal. The residential area itself is divided into the former residence, the Memorial Park and Museum, the Relics Museum, Mao’s Ancestral Hall, Mao’s Bronze Statue Square, and a vast library. Other tourist attractions near Xiangtan City are also around Mount Shaoshan Scenic Area. They include:
Water Dripping Cave – This is a vast cave located in the Shaoshan Scenic Area. The cave is 2.8Kms in length and is flanked by lush green trees and colorful flowers on either side. Tourists are fascinated by the gingko, cycas, and privet trees as well as the roses, azaleas, chrysanthemums, and 100 other varieties of flowers growing in abundance around the cave.
Shaoshan Peak – Also known as Fairy Peak or Elegant Peak, Shaoshan Peak is the most picturesque site in this scenic area. Its main tourist attractions are Steles Forest of Mao Zedong’s Poems, the Temple of Shaoshan Peak, etc. There is a ropeway with the help of which visitors can admire the scenery.
Limpid Stream – This part of the Mount Shaoshan Scenic Area is located on the border of the Qingxi district of Xiangtan City. It consists of a long path called Hero Road that stretches between Chairman Mao’s statue at one end and the Swan Hill at the other. The Swan Hill has the Martyr’s Cemetery and is considered a holy place by staunch followers of the Party.
Yuhu Park – Another pleasing and charming attraction in Xiangtan City is Yuhu Park. It is not a part of the Shaoshan Scenic Area but is a small park where the locals, domestic tourists, and overseas tourists like to gather in the evenings. One will find senior citizens practicing Tai Chi at one corner and children playing in the kid’s playground. The greenery and flowering plants provide plenty of shade and many visitors just stroll around the park at a leisurely pace. There is a food court in the park where one can get refreshments and their wontons are very famous. Boating in the lake is a popular activity.