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Exploring More in Tonglu 2019-01-02
Tonglu County is known for its spectacular scenery and was the winner of the ‘2006 International Garden City’ which, sponsored by the International Federation of Parks and Recreation Administration (IFPRA) and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), is reputed as being a ‘Green Oscar’ contest.

Tonglu County is abundant in tourist attractions of both natural beauty and historical and cultural significance. Renowned spots include Yaolin Wonderland, Tianmu Rafting, Heavenly River and Cave and the less renowned, but equally resourceful, include Yaocun Village.

Yaocun Village is located in Yaolin Town, Tonglu County and is a time-honored village with a multitude of historical and cultural heritages. The village used to be the residences of two large families surnamed Yao (姚) and Shen (沈) and both were descendants of significant figures in Chinese history, the former of the chancellor of the Tang Dynasty (618-907) – Yao Chong (姚崇) and the latter of the famous scholar – Shen Yue (沈约) (Southern Dynasties 420-589).

After the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) the village became a mix of surnames and all living in harmony.

Listed below are some of the highlights of the village.

Natural Scenery – Da Zhou Fan (大洲畈)

Da Zhou Fan, also known as Da Zhou Shang, is a natural submerged sandbank at the bank of Fenshui River (the main branch of Fuchun River) which stretches eastwards for 2500 m. It borders a river on the north and a village on the south and used to be a deserted place later developing into a farmland growing corn, sorghum and millet. With agricultural tourism on the rise, Da Zhou Fan lures tourists for its golden blanket of rapeseed flowers and verdant green paddy fields.

Xiang-style Chinese Martial Art (项式武术)

Xiang-style Martial Art is a branch of Fujian’s Nanquan (Southern Fist: a noted martial art school originating south of the Yangtze River in China). Xiang-style Martial Art aims to help people to keep fit and focuses on self-protection rather than attack. After five generations of development Xiang-style Martial Art now consists of 18 sets of martial art routines, two sets of cudgel routines as well as two bench kung fu routines. In recent years it has won 45 gold medals of national and provincial level competitions and in 2011 Xiang-style Martial Art was added to the list of Hangzhou Intangible Cultural heritages.

Historical Buildings – Taiyang Buddhist Temple (太阳禅寺)

According to historical records Taiyang Buddhist Temple was originally built during the reign of Emperor Wuzong of the Ming Dynasty (1505 -1521 AD) and was reconstructed in 1858 - the eighth year reign of Emperor Xianfeng of the Qing Dynasty. Built against a mountain and facing southwards the temple has three rooms and two yards, all typical of Chinese architecture. The temple features black tiles and white walls built by cyan bricks and antique fire walls shaped like a horse’s head which is engraved with exquisite patterns. Enshrined inside the temple are the god of rain and grains which are worshipped for a smooth and successful coming year. In 1985 the county listed the temple as a cultural heritage.
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