Zibo is a city in the middle of the Shandong province and is one of the biggest and most thriving areas of eastern China. Considered to be the birthplace of Han Chinese, this city has a rich history. It was once the ancient state of Qi, around 300 years ago. It was at its height and had a good economic structure as well as a strong military force. Today the area still continues to prosper. Zibo has beautiful nature views, and mountains.
Interestingly, Zibo was the birthplace of the earliest form of football also known as soccer. The game was called Cuju and it is a competitive game where the players use their feet to pass around the ball on the field. The ultimate goal is to shoot the ball into an opening similar to a net. The use of hands in the game was not allowed. The game was also played in other parts of Asia. Cuju is recognized by FIFA as the oldest recordings of the sort now called football. However, the rules that FIFA recognize today are after the old British game started in the middle ages. Those rules are the same ones that the world now recognizes for the game of football.
Zibo is not only known for its vast history but also its large silk production. Once known to be the central hub of the silk supply, Zibo, was likely one of the origins of the “Silk Road”. Today the city still participates in the production of silks and still remains an important player in the silk industry not only for the region but for all of China. Zibo has a large number of natural resources making it a very important industrial city.
The city is not only important because of its many resources but is also a great place of culture. It was home to many heroes and celebrities including Jiang Ziya, a military strategist who helped overthrown the Shang dynasty. Zibo is known to be a 1,000 year old ancient city and is famous for its ceramics. Said to be the capital of ceramics, a great deal of artistry has come from Zibo. It is considered to be one of the birthplaces of porcelain and was the largest porcelain center in north china for many decades. You can still buy porcelain souvenirs today when visiting the city!
The city is also known for its large science center, though not for the common tourist, the complex is massive and it is the home for technology and pharmaceuticals. This complex has made Zibo into one of the leading science centers in the area and draws lots of educational programs. There are fourteen institutes of higher education surrounding the park. Educational advancements through science and technology are huge draws for the area. This park has also helped the overall economy of Zibo thrive.
Shandong Zibo has jurisdiction over five districts (Zhangdian, Boshan, Zichuan, Zhoucun and Zibo). Each district has its own economic and cultural advantages. Zichuan is the hometown of Pu Songling, the author of a classical supernatural novel Strange Stories from a Chinese Studio. During the Song Dynasty, Boshan started to produce pottery and porcelain wares, and was one of the five major pottery and porcelain production bases in China. Zhoucun Village, known as the “No.1 Village in Shandong,” was prosperous with handicraft products, such as silk, copper, and iron containers. Today, the ancient commodity and silk markets can still be seen.
Large crisp cakes produced by Zhou Village are thin, fragrant, crisp, and round. If a cake drops onto the ground, it will be broken into pieces. Cakes can be found at all large shops in Zibo.
Boshan Bean Curd Case is a traditional dish. Legend has it that when Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty paid a visit to Boshan during his southern inspection, he praised this dish. Boshan Bean Curd Case is beautiful in shape, with red and bright gravy, a sour and salty taste, and a delicious aroma.
Prepared with seasonal vegetables, this crispy and tasty dish is very popular in winter and at the Spring Festival. Legend has it that Su Xiaomei, a woman of the Yansheng Town, created the dish in the early days of the Qing Dynasty, hence the name “Su Pot.”
In the early 1930s, Shi Yupu, a man of Boshan, created these dumplings, which have a filling made of meat and vegetables and are often paired with a bowl of spicy soup.
Traced back to as early as the Qing Dynasty and held annually in the first lunar, the festival features dazzling and shining lanterns and various folk artistic activities, such as walking on stilts, playing lion dance, and carrying a sedan chair.
Held from April 16th to 22nd, this annual festival is based on the principle of “making friends extensively, strengthening friendship, promoting reform, and invigorating the economy.” Folk performances, the lantern festival, economic and trade talks, and the exhibitions and sales of commodities are the most popular events at the festival.
Linzi Football Museum is the first museum that presents the development and origin of football. In the museum, visitors can learn about the history and culture of Chinese football. The museum displays many precious antiques, historical pictures, recovery scenarios and demonstrates the development of football over the years. The ancient “Cuju” is the origin of today’s football that was born in ancient Qi era. Cu means kicking and Ju means balls. Linzi Football Museum is a marvelous encyclopedia of football culture and history.
Liao Zhai Town is the famous writer Song Ling Pu’s hometown. You can learn more about the famous writer Song Ling Pu’s life throughout the building. Song Ling Pu spent over 30 years and wrote about thousands of folk songs here. Liao Zhai Town preserves the traditional Chinese style architecture and is also listed as one of the top five tourist attractions in Shandong Province. Liao Zhai Town is manifested in a garden setting and the theme is based on the ghost story, “Strange Stories from a Chinese Studio.” The main characters of the story are spirits and ghosts and it spins a tale of the everyday life of commoners’ interaction with the spirits. Tourists can immerse themselves in the setting of the ancient folklores and explore the traditional Chinese life by touring Liao Zhai Town.
Boshan Karst Cave is famous for the carved stones that originated from the Kaiyuan period during Tang Dynasty. The cave is divided into eight huge and spacious halls. There are all shapes and sizes of limestones, stalactites and stalagmites. With your imagination, you might be able to visualize shapes symbolizing a dragon, a rhinoceros, a lion, a plant etc… The stones are also being illuminated by colorful lighting, creating an amazing view in the enclosed space. Boshan Karst Cave is also known as “First Karst Cave in Shandong” because of these amazing, and spectacular limestone that date back to the Tang and Song Dynasties.
Zhou Village in Zibo with many different styles of architecture has a long history. Ancient Business Plaza of Zhou Village, lying in the west end of the District, is the site for old business centers. Zhou Village was an important commercial town, during the late Ming and early Qing periods, and was known as the “King of the Village”. The streets are named after the businesses such as Silk Street and Sliver Street. There were many merchants selling silk and silver products along the street. Zhou Village, the one and only ancient commercial city in Shandong which has well-preserved ancient building of Ming and Qing Dynasties, is a historical witness of the prosperity and development of Shandong’s merchant culture.
Zibo is in the top five place of ceramics production, it has produced ceramics for more than thousands of years. Zibo China Ceramics Museum is one of the largest ceramics museums in China; it has been listed as a 4A National Tourism Spot. It exhibits the high quality and modern ceramics. You can see many different types of ceramics not only made in China but also made in different countries in the museum. The museum presents how ceramic materials are used in the army, environment, science, space as well as electronics and appliances. The museum also holds family-oriented events, where children can watch the sculpture show, take photos with the Chinese zodiac ceramics or get down on their hands to create the ceramics pottery with their parents. Zibo China Ceramics Museum has become one of the important field trips for schools.
Zibo, being the famous writer Song Ling Pu’s hometown, the Municipal Government and Zichuan District Government organizes International Liao Zhai Cultural Tourist Festival that is held annually in the month of May. The theme is based on traditional folk poems and songs, and Liao Zhai ghost stories. This festival provides tourists with a variety of activities. For example, traditional food tasting, Liao Zhai story and culture experience, traditional entertainments such as dancing, singing folk songs and playing traditional games. Since it came into existence in 2002, this festival has created a good reputation in Shandong province and has become a large-scale cultural tourism activity in Shandong Province.
In order to demonstrate the historic development of China from the ancient time to the present, Zibo city holds “China Zibo International Porcelain and Pottery Exposition” every year in September to welcome visitors to come for sightseeing and doing business.
With a time-honored history, Zibo is one of the five major producers of pottery and porcelain in China, giving it the distinction of the “Porcelain Capital of North China.” Since 1980, Zibo has created Huashi, Luyu and Gaoshiying porcelain wares, which are used for entertaining the presidents of foreign countries by the Chinese state leaders in Zhongnanhai. These porcelain wares can be purchased at the Huaguang Pottery and Porcelain Exclusive Store.
Boshan District began to produce glassware in the Yuan Dynasty. Today, it turns out a wide variety of glass products, such as snuff bottles, mouthpieces of pipes, and pearl curtains. The painted craftsmanship and exquisite and novel shapes make this glassware a rare treasure.
Zhou Village was known as the land of silk throughout Chinese history, with a large number of silk workshops and firms. Today, Zhou Village produces over 80 varieties of silk, of which 20 varieties are exported to over 12 countries and regions in the world. Zhou Village Silk Knitting Factory and ZhouVillage Silk Printing and Dyeing Mill produce the best-quality silk.
Zibo is an important transportation hub of Shandong Province with 15 crisscrossed highways and railways radiating to all parts of the country. Zibo is 70 kilometers from the Jinan International Airport and 200 kilometers from the Qingdao International Airport.
Public buses and taxis are easily accessible in Zibo City. The public buses from the Zibo Railway Station (Zhangdian) to the main tourist attractions are as follows:
Bus No. 52 goes from the Zibo Railway Station to Houlijia Village.
Bus Nos. 26 and 28 run from the Zibo Railway Station to Qidu Town.
Bus No. 26 goes from the Zibo Railway Station to Fujiamiao Village.
Walk two kilometers eastward along Huangong Road from the Zibo Railway Station.
Take the bus from Zhangdian to Yulong Town and get off at Mata Lake.
Bus No. 71 at the Zibo Railway Station and get off at Xincheng Stop.
Bus No.13 travels from the Boshan Railway Station to Chishang Town.
Bus No.13 at the Boshan Railway Station to Quanhe.
Bus No. 49 at the Boshan Railway Station to Jiaolingqian.
Take Bus No. 11 at the Boshan Railway Station to the Pottery and Porcelain Company, and walk 200 meters.
Travel to Pujianzhuang by No. 23 round-the-city bus at Zichuan.
Travel to Pujianzhuang by No. 23 round-the-city bus at Zichuan.
Bus No. 61 to Tumen Town, then walk about two kilometers.
Bus No. 53 goes from Zhangdian to Mengshan Mountain.
The telephone number for train information: 0533-2582522
The telephone number for the Long-distance Bus Station: 0533-2889261