Tai'an Overview

Basic Information

  • Chinese Name: 泰安
  • Location: Located in western Shandong province, China
  • Area: 7,761 square kilometers
  • Population: 5,637,400
  • Language: Mandarin, Tai’an dialect

Administrative Division

Tai'an, a prefecture-level city of Shandong, has direct jurisdiction over 2 districts, 2 county-level cities and 2 counties.

  • 2 Districts: Taishan District (泰山区), Daiyue District (岱岳区)
  • 2 County-level cities: Xintai City (新泰市), Feicheng City (肥城市)
  • 2 Counties: Ningyang County (宁阳县), Dongping County (东平县)

And they are further divided into 88 townships, 157 urban communities and 3,577 administrative villages.


Tai'an is centered on the south side of Mount Tai Center, and it borders the provincial capital of Jinan to the north, Zibo to the east, Laiwu to the northeast, Linyi to the southeast, Jining to the south, Liaocheng and Puyang (a city of Henan) to the west across the Yellow River through which it is separated from the province of Henan. The terrain is inclined from northeast to southwest, and there are many types of landforms, including mountains, hills, plains, lowlands and lakes.

The mountainous area is concentrated in the north and east of the city, covering an area of 140,700 hectares. It accounts for 18.3% of the total land area, and it has an average elevation of 800 meters. Hills are mainly distributed in southwestern Xintai City, northern Ningyang County, northwestern Tai’an, the northern Dongping County and the edge of the Feicheng Basin, covering 316,400 hectares. They account for 41.1% of the total land area. They have an average elevation of 300 meters. Plains are mainly concentrated along foothills and rivers. Most are the valley plain and diluvial or alluvial plain in meters about 120m. They have an area of 277,600 hectares, accounting for 36.1 % of the total land area. Lowlands are mainly located around the "three lakes" (Dongping Lake, Daodun Lake and Zhoucheng Lake) in Dongping County, covering an area of 34,300 hectares. They account 4.5% of the total land area, and have an average elevation of 50 meters. Lakes are concentrated in Dongping County. Dongping Lake is the largest freshwater lake in Tai’an and the second largest lake in Shandong.


Tai'an lies in the northern temperate zone and has a continental, semi-humid monsoon climate. Also, it has four distinct seasons. The weather in summer and winter is comfortable, and rainy season coincides with high temperature. Spring is dry and windy. Summer is hot and rainy. Autumn is sunny and refreshing. And winter is cold and a little snowy. The average annual temperatures are −2.1 °C (January), 12.8 °C (annual average), and 26.0 °C (July). The total annual average solar radiation is 121.58 kilocalorie per square centimeter, and the annual variation is between 112 ~ 131 kilocalorie per square centimeter. In the year, May is the most, and December is the least.

The Best Time to Go

Summer and autumn are the best seasons to travel Tai’an because you could enjoy captivating mountain scenery and charming autumn landscape. First, the weather is the most moderate at the turn of spring and summer. If you travel Mount Tai during this period, you could enjoy its majesty and beauty better. Second, autumn is sunny and refreshing, which could make you keep a good mood. Besides, Mount Tai is the most colorful in autumn because leaves start to color. The autumn wind blows, cenglinjinran, golden; sun, walking in the mountain, there is a different kind of taste. Third, the Buddhist Light usually appears from June to August each year on half-sunny and half-foggy days and when the sun is shining slantly.

Things to Do

No matter when you visit Tai’an, you could enjoy your trip because there are numerous scenic spots. You could visit Juping Site and Dawenkou Site where you could experience the ancient culture. Then, you could feel unique atmosphere of religious culture by visiting Dai Temple, Longgong Temple, Bixia Temple and Dongyue Temple. Of course, it is a necessity for you to climb Mount Tai which is the leader of the five sacred mountains. There, you could get a profound experience of Taoism. More importantly, there are a lot of scenic spots, including Tianjie, Half-way Gate to Heaven (Zhongtianmen), Red Gate, Sun Viewing Peak, Jade Emperor Peak, Daizongfang, Tianwaicun. In addition, you can go to see the peach blossom in spring, pick up peaches in the early September, riding bike around Dongping Lake and enjoy the shadow play.


As a famous scenic-tourist city, Tai’an has developed its great transportation system. Most of the transportation has developed very well, like buses, taxis, etc. In addition, there is a high-speed rail station which provides bullet trains in all directions. Moreover, there are many couch stations which provide long-distance couches to most of the main tourist areas.

History & Culture

Tai’an is an ancient cultural city with a long history of civilization. Tai'an was home to the Dawenkou culture during the neolithic era. From the prehistoric Dawenkou Culture to the near Ancient Ming and Qing dynasties, Tai’an developed under the rule of these dynasties, and its name changed a lot.

During the Spring and Autumn period and the Warring States period, the region belonged to the states of Qi and Lu. It was named Taishan County during the Western Han (206 BC-25 AD) and the Eastern Han (25-220 AD). During the Song dynasty, it was named Fengfu County. 8 years later, it was renamed Xiqing. In the second year of the Southern Song Dynasty, Tai’an State was established. In 198 it became a prefecture-level city within Shandong province.

Mount Tai is a part of Tai’an. And it was also famous in ancient times. It is said that there are 72 emperors coming to Mount Taishan for hunting and sacrifice in ancient times, such as First Emperor of Qin, Emperor Wu of Han Dynasty, Emperor Gaozong of Tang Dynasty, and 12 emperors of the Ming Dynasty. The Dai Temple at the foot of Mount Taishan is the place where the worship ceremonies and sacrifices are held. In addition, ancient scholars, poets and celebrities visited Mount Tai, and they also composing articles and poems related to Mount Tai after their visiting.


Due to the support of the state to economic development and the support of Shandong provincial government to the development of tourism, Tai’an has made great progress in economy. In 2016, the city's gross domestic product (GDP) reached 331.68 billion, and increased more 7.5% than that of 2015 in terms of comparable prices.

Its tourism makes great contribution to its economy. In 2006, Tai’an received 62,782 million tourists from home and abroad, with a total tourism consumption of 66.164 billion yuan. Mount Tai scenic spot received 5.73 million tourists, and got 430 million yuan in the entrance tickets. Other scenic spots received 5.841 million tourists, getting 650 million yuan in the entrance tickets.


There are many famous festivals and activities in Tai’an which give us different pleasure in different seasons, such as flower festivals. There are Dongping Rape Flower Festival and Feicheng Peach Flower Festival. In addition, there are some traditional festivals related to its traditional culture. Based on the Dongyue Temple, there is Dongyue Temple Fair. What’s more, in order to attract more tourists and meet the needs of climbing enthusiasts, Mount Tai International Climbing Festival would be hold in Mount Tai.


Tai’an means the country is peace and people are safe and comfortable. It is a famous cultural tourist city. Tai'an was listed by the State Council in 1982 as the first group of tourism cities open to the outside world. It is one of the central cities in the middle of Shandong. Also, it is an excellent tourist city in China and a famous historical and cultural city in China. Scenic spots and historical sites in Tai’an District received a lot of tourists every day.

Besides, Mount Tai Scenic Area in Taishan District plays a significant role in the development of tourism of Tai’an. Being blessed with splendid tourism resources, Mount Tai attracts numerous tourists every year. In order to develop tourism better, Mount Tai was paid much attention by the country so that the development of tourism here were promoted and improved a lot under the leading for government. Due to picturesque sceneries, attractive scenic spots and great tourism environment, Mount Tai Scenic Area received an increasing number of tourists every year. Mount Tai, as one of the key scenic sites in Tai’an, received 109,155 tourists in the Qingming Festival of 2018.


Food reflects culture. From the local food, we can judge a place's topography, climate and what kind of culture it has. As a prefecture-level city of Shandong province, Tai’an, of course, have something in common with other cities of Shandong on food. All these dishes belong to Lu cuisine which represents the northern style. However, dishes from different places have their own unique characteristics. Tai’an cuisine has religious characteristics, and reflects deep Taoist ideology. There are many local foods, like Tofu Feast, Soy Preserved Eggplant, etc. Also, you could enjoy delicious snacks, like Millet Pancake, Taishan Baked Wheat Cake with Donkey Oil.