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A Visit to Ruili
Materials are provided by "Travel China weekly newspaper"
Text by Zhang Kun
Ruili, on the southwest border of China in the Dehong DaiJingpo Autonomous Prefecture in south western Yunnan Province, features a unique natural landscape, rich mineral resources and colorful folklore. Adding to its special location neighboring Myanmar on three sides, the speedy development of Ruili and its modern life style have still not removed its aura of mystery. Many people mistakenly thought it was in Xishuangbanna, but that is not true.

Ruili is a birthplace of the Dai ethnic group. The Ruili River looks like a white jade belt winding around green mountains and fields. Ancient tall trees in Jingpo Mountain Village, a banana forest near Dai's bamboo buildings, egrets and leisurely herds of cattle created an attractive genre painted corridor. It is more interesting that a Dai village spans a section of the Sino-Myanmar border line to form a special landscape of "one village, two countries."

Built 2,500 years ago,
the 47-meter-high main tower of
the Jiele Golden Pagoda was clustered
round 16 small towers. It is believed
to contain an interred bone of the Buddha.

Ruili's rainy season starts from July and ends in October and the name of the city in Dai language means "fine drizzle." The climate there divides neatly into dry and rainy seasons. The rain tends to come down in torrents and ends very quickly. When it rains, people have no time to take shelter. But even if you get drenched, the sun soon returns to provide a drying effect. Another peculiarity is that the rain can be very localized. Thus, it is pouring in the eastern street and fine day in the western street. It looks as if a watering car has passed by. A famous Chinese song named "There Is a Beautiful Place" describes Ruili. In the 1950s, when he came to see the picturesque Dai village, green fields, tall bamboo, blue water of Ruili River and the young women dressing colorfully, the lyric writer and composer was moved to create a music and word picture.

In Ruili City, Nongdaobingmao Por is an important trading point along China's southwestern border leading to Myanmar, India and Nepal.

Recently along with the deepening of reform and opening-up, Ruili's frontier trade and tourism are developed speedily. The border is peaceful and booming. Drg smuggling has been a concern for society in recent years. But Ruili's frontier is a protective screen since frontier soldiers safeguard its peace. In frontier villages and pollution-free tropical rain forests, one can see the well-received unique-style Hinayana of the Dai's, exquisite pagodas and fascinating folk dances. In the Sino-Myanmare border area, the abundance of gems, jadeware and jadeite create China's largest jewel market. At the market, tourists will be pleasantly surprised to find something they like.

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