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China Travel News and Events (April. 25th, 2001)

More Inbound Tourists in First Quarter

China received 20.8 million inbound tourists during the first three months of this year, up 8.7 percent compared with the same period last year.

The latest statistics shows that the number of foreign tourists increased 12.5 percent to 2.3 million and foreign currency income increased 11.6 percent to 3.93 billion US dollars during the period.

The number of tourists from many countries reached two-digit growth, including Japan, the Republic of Korea, the United States and Singapore.

Mazu Culture and Tourism Festival Begins in Tianjin

More than 1,000 people from China 's mainland, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan attended the opening ceremony of the Tianjin Mazu Culture and Tourism Festival last Thursday.

They gathered at the third largest Mazu temple in the world, the square in front of Tianjin's Tianhou Temple, to pay their homage to the Goddess of the Sea.

At present, the number of the Mazu followers exceeds 100 million worldwide with more than 3,000 Mazu temples.

The worshipping of Mazu originated in a story about a man who lived more than 1,000 years ago and who fought courageously against pirates and helped salvage victims of maritime disasters.

Macao-Qingdao Flight Opens Again

With the first scheduled flight arriving at Macao International Airport at 2 p.m. last Thursday , Air Macao has resumed its Qingdao-bound air route.

The Macao-Qingdao air route began operation in March 1997, but was suspended due to economic reasons in June 1998.

Temporarily using 48-seat CRJ-200 passenger planes of Shandong Airlines, Air Macao decided to resume the air route to Qingdao, the capital city of east China's Shangdong province, after negotiation with Shandong Airlines. Larger-size planes will be adopted when passenger flow increases.

The resumed air route has three scheduled flights every week, on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. The planes will take off at 11:10 a.m. from Qingdao and return from Macao at 3:20 p.m. and take 3 hours and 10 minutes for each flight.

So far, Air Macao has 10 stops in China's mainland including Beijing, Chengdu, Guilin, Haikou, Kunming, Nanjing, Ningbo, Shanghai, Qingdao and Xiamen.

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