With its tropical climate and beaches, Sanya in China’s southernmost province of Hainan has long been a renowned winter resort.


The city is becoming even more popular as local authorities organize a number of culture-themed campaigns to improve its attractiveness.


One of the most recent events is an exhibition called Art Sanya.


Starting on Dec 6, it is showcasing the latest trends in art and offering a chance for Chinese and foreign artists to exchange ideas and interact with aficionados of creativity.


Nearly 300 artworks ranging from paintings and sculptures to photographs, videos and installations are exhibited at the show that will run until February.


"Art can enrich local people’s spiritual life and also give a strong boost to the tourism industry," said Deputy-Mayor Li Baiqing at the opening ceremony.


Xu Zhenling, another deputy mayor in Sanya, said the event has a ripple effect.


She said last year’s exhibition attracted many tourists to spend one or two more days in Sanya, benefiting hotels and others in the service industry.


A new scenic spot that features the culture of local Li and Miao people is also attracting visitors.


Named Qianguqing, it has a theme park where visitors can pick coconuts, savor local beverages, and learn Li and Miao dances.


Those who come in the evening can enjoy a live variety show of historical stories that have Hainan province as the backdrop.


It received more than 120,000 tourists a month since its opening in September.


By integrating local culture and tourism, the show offers visitors in Sanya a good destination in the evening, said Tang Sixian, deputy director of the city’s tourism commission.


The Sanya government also organized a photograph contest in partnership with a local photographers association in 2012.


Sun Su, head of the city’s information office, said the contest is significant for the integration of tourism and culture.


Designed to encourage citizens and visitors alike to explore the beauty of the city, the event has now received about 20,000 works from nearly 2,000 contestants from China and abroad.


In addition to natural wonders, their photography also reflects age-old traditions, people’s lives as well as urban buildings.


SOURCE: China Daily


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