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Yangzhou readies for global tourists

Yangzhou, a 2,500-year-old eastern city, is now a bustling tourism magnet ready to receive visitors from all over the world.


"We want to make Yangzhou a cosmopolitan city and make its tourism more international," said local official Wang Ming Hong, the deputy director of the Yangzhou Tourism Bureau.


As a city abundant in historical and cultural resources, Yangzhou is proud of its potential tourism market that can cater to different international tastes.


"For European travelers, Marco Polo will be inviting, as he was a local officer in Yangzhou for three years. With this in mind, we are building a museum in his honor next to the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal," said Wang.


"To the Japanese, Monk Jianzhen's voyages to Japan (from Yangzhou) in the Tang Dynasty to promote Buddhism would be of interest. For Koreans and people from the Middle East, Yangzhou is also a center of Islamic culture relics."


He added, "In this way, Yangzhou is a suitable destination for visitors both at home and abroad."


The city has made great efforts to go international. According to the director, bilingual signs are provided in scenic spots across the city to give directions and in some places, Japanese and Korean signs are available to visitors.


(CRI March 17, 2009)