Zhengzhou Culture

Zhengzhou Culture introduces Zhengzhou culture tour information about history, religions, food culture, opera culture, ethnic groups, festivals and customs, world cultural heritages, traditional villages, intangible cultural heritages and inheritors of intangible cultural heritages.

History of Zhengzhou

5000 years ago, the first ancestor of Chinese culture Xuanyuan Yellow Emperor was born and then he founded the capital on the land of Zhengzhou. In ancient times, Zhengzhou belonged to Yuzhou. In the early Xia dynasty, emperor Shun established the capital in Yangcheng (now Dengfeng Wangchenggang Site), and then the Xia dynasty moved the capital to Yangzhai (now Xuchang Yuzhou). 3,600 years ago, the second slavery dynasty of China, the Shang dynasty, established its capital here, which is the founding capital- Capital Bo(亳都). Today, the 7 km long Shang dynasty wall still remains in central Zhengzhou. After the experience of the dynasties, Zhengzhou was the capital for five times. On October 30, 1954, the government of Henan province moved from Kaifeng to Zhengzhou, and Zhengzhou became the capital of Henan province since then.

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Yellow River Civilization

The Yellow River civilization roughly formed between 4000 BC and 2000 BC, and lasted for two thousand years. The development period of Yellow River civilization is its sublimation stage. In terms of the times, it was mainly Xia, Shang and Zhou dynasties. At this time, the Yellow River civilization was mainly concentrated in the central plain of the middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River, with today's Henan province as the core. The culture of the central plain is the center of the Yellow River civilization.

Central Plains Culture

Central plains culture is the general term of material culture and spiritual culture in the middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River, and is the matrix and backbone of Chinese culture. The central plains culture, with Henan as the core and the vast middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River as the hinterland, radiates outward layer by layer and extends its influence overseas. The central plains is the cradle of Chinese civilization, and the central plains culture is an important source and core part of Chinese culture. In ancient times, the central plains was not only the political and economic center of China, but also the birthplace of mainstream culture and dominant culture. In Chinese history, more than 20 dynasties made their capitals in the central plains, and half of China's eight ancient capitals are on the central plain area, including Luoyang, Kaifeng, Anyang and Zhengzhou. Due to its special geographical environment, historical status and humanistic spirit, the central plains culture has been in the orthodox mainstream for a long time in the long history of China, and the central plains culture represents the traditional Chinese culture to a certain extent.

Religion Culture in Zhengzhou

According to the official website of the ethnic affairs committee of Zhengzhou, there are five major religions in the city, namely Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Catholicism and Christianity, about 530000 religious believers, among which there are more christians, Muslims and buddhists. Zhengzhou, the capital of Henan province, is located in the south of the north China plain. Zhengzhou culture plays an important role in Henan culture, especially its religious culture. In Henan, most people believe in Chinese Buddhism, and Zhengzhou has the most temples in Henan. Shaolin temple is a famous buddhist temple in China and the source of Chinese Kung Fu. It is located at the western foot of Songshan mountain, 13 kilometers northwest of Dengfeng City in Zhengzhou.

Part Religious Venues in Zhengzhou

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Opera Culture in Zhengzhou

Yu Opera, Qu opera and Yue Tune(越调) have a great influence on the types of opera in Zhengzhou, among which Yu Opera, together with Peking Opera, Ping Opera and Yue Opera(Shaoxing Opera), is known as one of the four major types of opera in China. The opera atmosphere in Zhengzhou is very strong. As early as the beginning of the 20th century, Laofengang(老坟岗) near the Zhengzhou railway station gathered performers of Zhuizi(坠子), cross talk, Pingshu, magic, opera and raree show(拉洋片). Later, the major parks and cultural palaces in Zhengzhou became the main venues for opera lovers.

Yu Opera/Henan Opera

Henan opera originated in Kaifeng of Henan province, inherited, reformed, innovated and developed on the basis of Henan Bangzi. After the founding of the nation, since Henan is referred to as "Yu", hence the Yu Opera. Henan opera is famous for its sonorous singing, cadence, merry and lively tune, clear articulation, lively and vivid, and being good at expressing the inner feelings of the characters. With its high level of artistry, Yu opera is widely welcomed by people from all walks of life. Because of its musical accompaniment with Zaomu Bangzi beat, so the early name Henan Bangzi.

Zhengzhou Food Culture

The staple food of Zhengzhou people is mainly cooked wheaten food, among white flour food is given priority to, and coarse grain flour is only used as nutrition collocation, with small demend. Common foods made of flour include steamed buns, vegetable bun, lubricating roll, steamed stuffed buns, pancake, deep-fried dough cake, fried leek dumplings, baked wheat cake, fried bread stick and so on. Zhengzhou people particularly like to eat noodles, and there are many kinds of noodles, like soup noodles, lo mein, noodles with soybean paste, fried noodles, stewed noodles and so on. There are five main types of non-staple food in Zhengzhou, including meat, vegetables, edible fungi, soybean products and eggs.

Ethnic Groups in Zhengzhou

In addition to the Han, there are 47 minority groups in Zhengzhou, including Hui, Manchu, Mongol, Zhuang and Tujia. The Han nationality has the largest population, while the minority people are mainly Hui.

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Festivals and Customs of Zhengzhou

The majority of Zhengzhou's population is Han nationality. Among the minority groups, Hui ethnic minority has the largest population. Therefore, the festivals and activities in Zhengzhou are mainly those of the Han nationality, including New Year's Day(January 1), Spring Festival(usually in late Jan. or early Feb.; January 25, 2020), Lantern Festival(The fifteenth day of the first lunar month), Tomb Sweeping Day(15 days after the Spring equinox), Dragon Boat Festival(The fifth day of the fifth lunar month) and Mid-Autumn Day(The fifteenth day of the eighth lunar month), etc. Due to the special history and culture, there are some local fetured activities like ancestor worship grand ceremony of Yellow Emperor Hometown, International Shaolin Martial Art Festival, etc. 

Intangible Cultural Heritages and Its Heritors in Zhengzhou

As of October 2016, Zhengzhou had 6 items of national intangible cultural heritage, with 4 inheritors, 59 items of Provincial intangible cultural heritage, with 26 inheritors, and 185 items of municipal intangible cultural heritage, with 149 inheritors. Five batches of municipal projects and three batches of municipal inheritors have been announced. Among them, Shaolin Kung Fu, ancestor worship grand ceremony of Yellow Emperor Hometown, Chaohua blowing song(超化吹歌), Gongyi Xiaoxiang lion dance(巩义小相狮舞) are the national intangible cultural heritages and outstanding intangible cultural heritage projects.

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Traditional Villages in Zhengzhou

Of the five batches of traditional Chinese villages announced, only 8 villages in Zhengzhou are included in, mainly disrtibuted in Dengfeng City. As follows:

  • Dajindian Old Street in Dajindian Town of Dengfeng City, Zhengzhou郑州市登封市大金店镇大金店老街
  • Baishiya Village in Xuzhuang Town of Dengfeng City, Zhengzhou郑州市登封市徐庄镇柏石崖村
  • Shidonggou Village in Gaoshan Town of Xingyang City, Zhengzhou郑州市荥阳市高山镇石洞沟村
  • Lvlou Village in Liuzhai Town of Xinmi City, Zhengzhou郑州市新密市刘寨镇吕楼村
  • Haishangqiao Village in Dayugou Town of Gongyi City, Zhengzhou郑州市巩义市大峪沟镇海上桥村
  • Yangjiamen Village of Xuantianmiao Village in Shaolin Sub-district of Dengfeng City, Zhengzhou郑州市登封市少林街道玄天庙村杨家门村
  • Yanglin Village in Xuzhuang Town of Dengfeng City, Zhengzhou郑州市登封市徐庄镇杨林村
  • Angou Village in Xuzhuang Town of Dengfeng City, Zhengzhou郑州市登封市徐庄镇安沟村

World Cultural Heritage in Zhengzhou

Zhengzhou has 2 places and 15 items of world cultural heritage (The Centre of Heaven and Earth and the Grand Canal). 

World Cultural Heritage Items
The Centre of Heaven and Earth(天地之中历史建筑群) Shaolin Temple(Courtyard常住院,  Chu Zu An初祖庵, Pagoda forest), Three Towers of Eastern Han Dynasty(Taishi Tower, Shaoshi Tower and Qimu Tower), Zhongyue Temple, Songyue Pagoda, Huishan Temple, Songyang AcademyDengfeng Astronomical Observatory 
The Grand Canal Tongji Canal(通济渠汴河) and Xingyang Gucheng(荥阳故城)

Historical and Cultural Sites in Zhengzhou

Zhengzhou has numerous cultural relics and historic sites, including the ancient city, ancient culture, ancient tombs, ancient buildings, ancient passes and ancient battlefields, a total of more than 10000 ruins. Here below are just part of them. 

Museums in Zhengzhou

Zhengzhou boasts a long and profound history, with Xuanyuan Huang Emperor born and then made the capital on this land 5000 years ago. It should come as no surprise then that Zhengzhou is home to an impressive number and variety of museums. Whether you're interested in local history, art or geology, a museum is a great way to kill your time on a miserable day.

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Zhengzhou Culture Tours

Shaolin Kung Fu Tours

Zhengzhou Culture by Region