Travel Rationale

Commonly referred to as the mother river or China’s Pride, the Yellow River is the second longest river in China after the Yangtze. As the cradle of Chinese civilization, the spiritual home of the Chinese people. It is the waters of the Yellow River and its spirit that nurture the whole Chinese nation. For thousands of years, the Yellow River has been admiring by literary giants, artists, as well as by the common people. It bears special significance: the symbol of the Chinese nation, the spirit of the Chinese people and more importantly, civilization itself.

The Yangtze River, on the other hand, has also been an important place of Chinese history, with human activity dated back to 2 million years ago, with several Chinese ethnic groups having inhabited and controlled the territory around it. The difficulty in crossing the river made it often the border of kingdoms and the place of fierce battles. Several dynasties and the Republic of China (1912-1949) had their capital in Nanjing, then the first bridging point and a strategic location on the Yangtze.

In the past, however, these rivers are also referred to as China’s sorrow due to the frequent devastating floods and course changes, thousands of people were regularly displaced or killed due to their temperamental nature. The proposed trip aims to document this dichotomy of China’s two main rivers, of both the birthplace providing rich farmlands, and the dangerous natural habitat. Roughly taking between six and eight weeks, initially travelling west along the Yangtze River, and returning east along the Yellow River, three specific phenomenon along these two rivers, will be examined, stopping at larger cities listed below, as well as smaller cities in between.

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