Pay just five Chinese yuan ($0.73) and you can ride one of the last regularly operated passenger steam trains in China. The six villages it connects in the Jiayang Mining Region of Sichuan Province have no roads between them, so the train makes four crowded trips a day.
The Chuxi tulou town in southeast China’s Fujian Province has a group of earthen structures known as tulou. The buildings, rural dwellings of the Hakka people, date back to the Ming dynasty (1368–1644).
Juyong Pass, a mountain pass located about 31 miles from central Beijing, was one of the nine mountain passes during China’s Warring States period (403–221 B.C.). The Great Wall of China passes through here.
A group of students are heading home after school in Jiangsu Province, a coastal province north of Shanghai. With its capital in Nanjing, Jiangsu is one of the leading provinces in manufacturing electronics and apparel items.
A guard keeps watch in front of the portrait of Chairman Mao in Tiananmen Square in Beijing. While most are familiar with the Forbidden City, which lies beyond the guarded Tiananmen gate, the defensive structure itself is regarded as a national landmark, as it has a history dating back to the early 15th century.
A chef prepares a regional food at a hotel in Tacheng in southwestern Yunnan Province. As the province is one of the most ethnically diverse areas in China, Yunnan cuisine has a wide variety of flavors.
A couple on the street wear masks to protect themselves from air pollution. The smog has recently engulfed many major cities across China, including Beijing, Tianjin, and Xi’an. Beijing has responded by launching an environmental police force to crack down on polluters such as open-air barbecues and garbage incineration.
Fog shrouds the Jeduo Pass, the gateway to Tibet on the Ancient Tea Horse Road in Sichuan Province. About a thousand years ago, mule caravans carried tea and salt on this important trade path linking southwest China, central China, and Tibet.
Prayer flags are flying in Jiuzhaigou National Park, located on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau. According to Tibetan tradition, it is best to hang the flags on sunny but windy days. They are used as symbols of peace, compassion, and wisdom.
Crystal waters fed from glaciers cascade down in a series of waterfalls in Jiuzhaigou, a nature reserve and national park located in the north of Sichuan Province. The park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992.