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Qufu's night tourism innovation enlivens economy| Updated: May 22, 2024


Every day at 7:30 pm, colorful lights illuminate the Wanren Palace wall, encircling the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) ancient city of Qufu. [Photo/WeChat account: gh_2fbaaaf1eff1]

Qufu in Jining, Shandong province, is developing night tourism experiences centered around the Ming Dynasty Ancient City and Liaohe River. After creating a designated area for nighttime activities, the city has experienced an increase in economic activity.

Data from a local official in the Lucheng sub-district of Qufu shows that cultural night tours have extended the average visitor stay in the ancient city by more than five hours.

To date, the main attractions in Qufu have received around 5.6 million visitors, resulting in a total tourism revenue of 5.2 billion yuan ($773.59 million).

In early 2024, Qufu started enhancing the fusion of cultural and tourism development with a unique approach. Leveraging its renowned status as the birthplace of Confucius, the city planned various performing arts events, such as hanfu parades and light shows, to enrich evening tours of the Ming Dynasty Ancient City.

The burgeoning cultural night tours have led to the emergence of intangible cultural heritage innovations, specialty snacks and street performances. Tea houses, bars, and art shops have become popular destinations for consumers, adding vibrancy to the area.