Liuzhou City in the People’s Republic of China is in north central Guangxi Province. It has a population of 3.7 million and covers an area of 18,700 square kilometers. The city is on the banks of the Liu River. It is the second biggest city in Guangxi Province.

Among the main industries of the city are LiuGong, a construction machinery company and SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile, a Joint Venture whose partners include General Motors and Wuling Motors.

Liuzhou as well as being a hub for industry and wealth creation is also a popular tourist destination thanks to its mountains, caves and karst scenery. Just north of the city is Sanjiang. It is an area of pretty villages where the ethnic Dong minority live.

There is a famous saying in China:

“Born in Suzhou, live in Hangzhou, eat in Guangzhou, die in Liuzhou”
(sheng zài su zhou, zhù zài háng zhou, chi zài guang zhou, si zài liu zhou).

The reference to Liuzhou is because the city was traditionally famous for its coffins made of fir wood, camphor and sandalwood.

There is a lot more to Liuzhou. The experience of living in the city, especially for a foreigner is one that is hard to imagine. In 1997 I met Ken. We were both new to China at the time. While I opted to move out of the Middle Kingdom he chose to stay.  He has made an impressive record of his experiences living in Liuzhou. It is well worth reading both and the blog to find out more about this fascinating part of China. The blog is particularly amusing. It covers such stories as the man who had his shoes stolen while in hospital and Chinese olives. It is a fascinating insight into a city undergoing the transformations caused by the so-called Chinese economic miracle: a culture firmly planted in tradition and yet trying to embrace modernity, only with Chinese characteristics. In short these websites are compulsive reading for those wanting to know about life behind the iron rice bowl.

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