Zhejiang, formerly known as Chekiang is a province on the east coast of China. It derives its name from the Zhe River (now known as Qiantang River) that passes through the province. The name in Chinese means ‘Broken’ or ‘Crooked River’. It is bordered by Jiangsu and Shanghai to the North, Anhui, and Jiangxi to the West, and Fujian to the south. Being surrounded by the East China sea to the east of it, Zhejiang is considered to have the longest coast in China.
The province mostly consists of hills with approximately only a fourth of the province consisting of plains and basins. It is also said to have the largest number of Islands, 3,000 in total, including the Zhouian Islands which is a collection of many small islands. Zhejiang’s climate is mainly a humid subtropical climate. There is however a notable difference between the coastal and highland regions of the province. The hilly interiors receive considerably more rainfall than the coastal region. The coastal region is also known to be prone to tropical cyclones especially around summer and early autumn.
Zhejiang is considered China’s backbone given that it’s the driving force behind China’s economy. It’s one of the most prosperous provinces ranking fourth in GDP nationally and 5th in GDP per capita. Its economy is mainly made up of agriculture, textile, electromechanics industries, and construction material. It remains one of China’s greatest cultural and literacy centers, whose landscape is popular for its aesthetic scenes.
How Many Cities in Zhejiang?
The large province of Zhejiang is divided into 11 cities referred to as prefectural-level cities. The capital is Hangzhou, which also happens to be the largest city in the province. Other notable cities include Ningbo and Wenzhou. The full list of cities is as follows:
These 11 cities are then further subdivided into a total of 90 counties which include, one autonomous county, 20 county-level cities, 33 counties, and 36 districts. These counties are divided into a total of 1570 towns entailing 290 subdistricts, 761 towns, and 505 townships, 14 of which are ethnic townships.
Politically, Zhejiang’s government is structured as a dual-party government system. In this system, the highest-ranking government official is the Governor. Due to the dual system, however, the governor is considered a subordinate of the CPC Party Chief, that is, the Communist Party of China, Provincial Committee Secretary.
The population of Zhejiang Province China.
Zhejiang is ranked the 10th most populated province in China with approximately 57 million people. About two-fifths of the population is settled in the Lake Tai plain and Hangzhou Bay coast. The rest of the population is spread out in the various cities and towns. Among the most populated cities are Wenzhou, Hangzhou, Ningbo, Taizhou, and Jinhua.
The majority of the population at Zhejiang is made up of the Han people who speak varieties of Wu Chinese. The population also consists of 400,000 ethnic minority members, of which the She people make up half of that number. The Jingning She people inhabit the only She autonomous county in China. You will also find some of them in mountainous regions like Wenzhou and Lishui. Other ethnic minority groups in Zhejiang are the Hui who is approximately 20,000, as well as the Manchu, Tujia, Buyi, and Hmong minorities.
In terms of religion, a large majority of the population (approximately 74%) are either a part of folk religious sects, Taoists, or Buddhists. There is a small percentage that identifies as Christians, either Catholics or Protestants. Another small number, mainly the Hui practice Islam, while the She practice a religion known as She Shamanism.
What is Zhejiang Famous for?
The Zhejiang province is among the wealthiest in China and they are famous for many things, the main one being agriculture. It is considered the top tea province in China, with four principal tea cities. Pingshui has the largest production of tea, while Hangzhou is famous for the production of the Dragon Well (Lingjing) green tea. The other two cities are Wenzhou and Jiande.
Zhejiang is also the second top province when it comes to sericulture, the rearing of silkworms to produce silk. The primary rearing location is Lake Tai plain and other secondary cities in the northwest and northeast of the province. The province’s agriculture is the most diversified in China, including sweet potatoes, sugarcane, tobacco, maize, barley, and their chief staple food, rice.
Aside from agriculture, Zhejiang is also known for fishing. Thanks to its expansive coastal regions and its convergence with the western Pacific, it has flourishing aquaculture. You’ll find more than 100 varieties of different fish.
The province is also considered a significant exporter with specialized centers for light industry products and handicrafts. The common exports include Hangzhou’s silk umbrellas and tapestry, Longchuan’s porcelain, as well as products like laces, embroideries, and stone and wood carvings.
As an attraction, Zhejiang is among the greatest cultural and literal centers in China. The province is called the State of Historic Relics, due to its large storehouse of historic relics, being the birthplace of the ancient China civilization. Its Buddhist temples and worship sites are also popular among tourists. The province simply has a large variety of natural attraction that makes it so popular.
River of Zhejiang Province.
The main river in Zhejiang is the Qiantang River, which the province was named after. It has two main headstreams. One tributary flows from the southwestern highlands to the Lan River valley. The second tributary called the Xin’an river flows from Anhui and flows through Jiande and the other cities. It supplies to the Xin’an River Dam located on it, which’s the major supplier of hydroelectricity in that area.
The second largest river after is the Ou river. This river is made up of four main tributaries that flow about 388km through the mountain’s rocky channels and gorges. It finally goes through Wenzhou to empty into the East China Sea. The river is rich in terms of the variety of fish that’s found in it. There were approximately 60 different systems. Other notable rivers aside from these two are the Yong, Qu, and Ling rivers.
Also known as Zhe Cuisine, Zhejiang cuisine is the traditional way of cooking in the province. It is among the eight Chinese cuisines and is characterized by having no grease, mellow fragrance, and soft and fresh flavor. Zhejiang cuisine entails at least three different styles based on the major cities of the province.
One of them is the Shaoxing style that mostly specializes in freshwater fish and poultry. The Hangzhou style is characterized by rich variations and the use of bamboo shoots. The Ningbo style is characterized by freshness and salty dishes that are mostly centralized around seafood. Most people, however, may find Ningbo food very salty. As for the Wenzhou style of cooking, it’s considered the greatest style when it comes to seafood, livestock, and poultry.
The following is a list of all the notable dishes from the Zhenjiang province:
Dongpo pork – this dish is made of fried pork belly in soy sauce and wine.
Fried shrimp – the river shrimp has first been deep-fried and then stir-fried.
Hibiscus mud crab – this dish is cooked with chicken stock, vegetables, eggs, and Shaoxing wine.
Jin yu man tang – this is a platter of pork strips, deep-fried chicken, shrimp, ham, Chinese perch, and crab roe.
Longjin shrimp – it is cooked with Longjin tea.
Pearls on a palm – fish balls served on goose web.
Stir-fried eel – swamp eel served with vinegar, sugar, and garlic.
West Lake chuncai soup – this dish is made with chuncai, ham, and chicken breast.
Wenzhou pig powder – this is rice noodles mixed with pig blood and intestines as well as duck blood.
Sister Song’s fish broth – made with Shiitake mushroom, eggs, ham, chicken stock, bamboo shoot, and Chinese perch.
As mentioned, Zhejiang is called the State of Historical relics, because the ancient Chinese civilization is said to have started here, hence the large storehouse of many relics. The province has been called many names over the years. With different emperors building their sit of power in Zhejiang, this province has witnessed the rise and fall of six or more dynasties in the feudal period. These dynasties include Sui, Tan, Song, Jin, Yuan, Ming, and Qing dynasties.
After the Qin Dynasty, during the Second Sino-Japanese war, the Japanese took over and occupied Zhejiang. They put it under the control of a puppet japan state called, Recognized National Government of China. During that time, there was the Doolittle raid that led to the Japanese killing 250,000 innocent civilians, in search of the Doolittle men. The Chinese who harbored the Americans was were made to pay dearly. It wasn’t until the People’s Republic when Japanese was defeated and the government of China took over.
In terms of its economy, even during the Ming and Qing Dynasties, Zhejiang was considered an international trade center. Its economy at the time flourished. During and after the Sino-Japanese war, the province’s economy. Thanks to the people’s entrepreneurial spirit and Deng Xiaoping’s economic reform techniques, Zhejiang’s economy grew and eventually restored to being among the most prosperous provinces in China.
Zhejiang is a powerful and prosperous province. It’s rich in history and cuisine as wells as the most beautiful scenic places. It is a great place to visit and learn about.