China News Service, March 1 (China News Business Reporter Wu Jiaju) How did Zhangjiajie, about 1,800 kilometers away from Seoul, South Korea, become a place that receives more than 200,000 Korean tourists every year and is "a place that Korean citizens must visit in their lifetime"?

“A place you must visit in your lifetime”

  According to a recent report by CCTV Finance, data showed that more than 140,000 Koreans traveled to China in January this year, a year-on-year increase of 908%.

Among them, Zhangjiajie has once again become one of the popular destinations for Korean tourists in China.

  South Korea is an important source of international tourists to Zhangjiajie.

It’s no secret that Korean tourists love Zhangjiajie.

  A magnificent sea of ​​clouds appears in Zhangjiajie, Hunan.

Photo by Wu Yongbing

  In September 2023, the Zhangjiajie Cultural Tourism Promotion Conference will be held in Seoul, South Korea.

A set of data revealed at the meeting showed that Zhangjiajie receives more than 200,000 Korean tourists every year, with a peak of 600,000.

One out of every four Korean tourists who travel to China arrives in Zhangjiajie


  Statistics show that from January to August 2023, one-third of the 289,700 inbound tourists received by Zhangjiajie were from South Korea.

  At the same time, many Korean dramas and Korean variety shows have been filmed in Zhangjiajie.

  According to a report by Zhangjiajie Daily in March 2018, a South Korean official said when visiting Zhangjiajie that Zhangjiajie is a place that Korean people must visit in their lifetime.

As a young tourist city, he was surprised and admired that it can have such a strong attraction and a huge tourist group, especially that it protects the environment very well while developing tourism.

  Zhangjiajie, Hunan: colorful peak forest.

Photo by Wu Yongbing

A gathering place for strange peaks

  Some people believe that Zhangjiajie's popularity in South Korea is partly due to Koreans' love for mountains.

  Deng Daoli, director of the External Publicity Office of the Propaganda Department of Wulingyuan District Committee of Zhangjiajie City, said in an interview with the media that as a peninsular country, nearly 70% of South Korea’s land area is covered with mountains, with rugged terrain and numerous mountains.

Koreans have always admired mountains, and mountain climbing is their favorite way of travel and entertainment.

  According to a report by Yonhap News Agency in February 2023, a survey released by the Korean Forest Service showed that 70% of Korean adults climb mountains or walk in the mountains and forests at least once a month.

  The most indispensable thing in Zhangjiajie is mountains.

For example, the natural scenery of Zhangjiajie National Forest Park is amazing with its peaks, quiet valleys, and beautiful forests.

There are more than 3,000 strange peaks in it, which are like people, beasts, utensils and objects. They are lifelike and spectacular. They are known as "three thousand strange peaks and eight hundred beautiful waters".

  In 1992, Wulingyuan Scenic Area, which consists of three major scenic spots including Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, Suoxi Valley and Tianzi Mountain in Hunan Province, was included in the "World Natural Heritage List" by UNESCO.

  In December 2019, a South Korean official said in an interview with Zhangjiajie Daily that Zhangjiajie is a place with very charming scenery. He feels very friendly and warm here, just like in his hometown.

He believes that the reason why Koreans particularly like to come to this place is that they are attracted by the fairyland-like beauty of Zhangjiajie.

  The sea of ​​clouds rolls in after the rain in Wulingyuan, Zhangjiajie.

Photo by Zhang Hongtao

"Journey of Filial Piety"

  In fact, China has many famous mountains.

Just "there are many, many mountains" does not seem to explain Korean tourists' preference for Zhangjiajie.

  Some people believe that successful publicity is an important reason why Zhangjiajie attracts Korean tourists.

  According to New Weekly, Zhangjiajie received only 116 Korean tourists in 1998, accounting for only 2.31% of all foreign inbound tourists at that time.

  The turning point occurred in 2001.

After the president of the Korea Tourism Organization visited Zhangjiajie in 2001, major Korean travel agencies began to promote it, and Zhangjiajie gradually became a fashion for Koreans to travel to China.

  At the same time, Zhangjiajie also continues to have friendly exchanges with Korean cities.

In 2006, Zhangjiajie City established a sister city relationship with Hadong County in South Korea.

In 2015, the Korean version of the "Tourism Service Guide" jointly compiled by Zhangjiajie Huatian International Travel Service and South Korea's Hana Dole International Travel Service was released to the Korean tourist source market.

Currently, when searching for "South Korea" on the Zhangjiajie Municipal People's Government website, more than 700 related results can be found.

  In publicity, Zhangjiajie tourism is also combined with filial piety.

  "Zhangjiajie is well-known in South Korea. The slogan 'Honor your parents, take them to Zhangjiajie' has been deeply rooted in South Korea." Deng Daoli said that Korean tourists visit Wulingyuan Scenic Area every day, even during the Spring Festival.

Zhangjiajie is already very mature in receiving Korean tourists.

In September 2023, the relevant person in charge of the China Tourism Office in Seoul also said at the promotion meeting that Zhangjiajie is a household name in South Korea, and sending parents to Zhangjiajie is known as a filial journey.

  According to CCTV Financial Report, a well-known Korean travel agency recently stated that since this year, 66% of consumers under the age of 60 have booked Zhangjiajie tourism products. The consumer group of forty to fifty-year-olds traveling with their parents has grown rapidly. Zhangjiajie is in South Korea. The travel label is changing from "Silver Travel" to "Family Travel".

  Zhangjiajie, Hunan: The clouds and mountains are filled with ice and snow.

Photo by Wu Yongbing

Attentive service

  In addition, the tourism infrastructure established in Zhangjiajie has also created conditions for Korean tourists to travel to Zhangjiajie.

  In terms of transportation, according to the "Zhangjiajie Airport" public account on December 13, 2023, as of now, Zhangjiajie Airport has opened routes to Daegu, Busan, Muan, Cheongju, and Incheon in South Korea, and is currently operating in Seoul and Busan in South Korea during the winter and spring season. , Daegu route.

In September 2023, representatives from 40 airlines and travel agencies including Air Seoul, Air Busan, and Jeju Air attended the Zhangjiajie Cultural Tourism Promotion Conference held in Seoul, South Korea.

  In November 2023, Tian Hongman, deputy director of the Zhangjiajie Municipal Bureau of Culture, Tourism, Broadcasting and Sports, said in an interview that the main service venues and major scenic spots in Zhangjiajie have corresponding Korean signs, and many also provide Korean services, and even Korean won can be used directly. .

According to him, in order to meet the service needs of Korean tourists, Zhangjiajie launched Korean guide certificates and opened many Korean barbecue restaurants.

At its peak, there were more than 3,000 direct employees practicing in Zhangjiajie to serve the Korean market.

  A report in New Hunan in 2020 also stated that at that time, there were about 400 Korean-speaking tour guides active in Zhangjiajie all year round.

  In Tian Hongman's view, factors such as the convenient transportation conditions and Zhangjiajie's customized and attentive services have a good reputation among Korean tourists, as well as Zhangjiajie's unique tourism resources, are the main reasons why Korean tourists are keen to visit Zhangjiajie.