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If somebody invites you to visit Hengdian, 180 kilometers away from Hangzhou, capital of eastern China's Zhejiang Province, you will certainly ask where Hengdian is and why would you want to go there.

Not many people know about this small town in southern China. But the names: "China Farmers' Tourist City" and "The Oriental Hollywood," are enough to tell you something. It boasts eight film shooting bases that can be used to represent 19th century Guangzhou, old Hong Kong, ancient neighborhoods, and Ming and Qing Dynasty streets. Xie Jin, a famous Chinese director, chose Hengdian for his historical film entitled "Opium War" for welcoming Hong Kong's return to the motherland.

Over the past two decades, this small town has shaken off its backwardness by developing its township economy. The economic growth inspired the town to enter the film and television industry. They made use of the well-preserved wooden houses to build a film and television shooting base. Then they built seven larger bases. Hengdian has become the largest film and television production center in Asia. The local landmark is Mount Bamian, an active volcano that saw its last eruption 30,000 years ago. Its pyramid shape is similar to Mount Fuji in Japan.

Now is a good time to see the Oriental Hollywood. In November, the '99 China Farmer Tourism Festival will be held. The festival aims to display the graveful bearing of modern farmers, celebrate the local economic development, and promote tourist products. This festival will attract more than 4,000 tourists. Visitors will participate in rich and colorful activities and visit the film and televison shooting sites.

Major activities:
1. The opening ceremony of the Farmer Tourism Festival: Performances given by six Chinese folk art troupes.
2. Mount Bamian climbing competition.
3. Aerobatics flight performance.
4. China Farmer Basketball Invitational Tournament.
5. 100 Poets Poem Writing Contest.
6. 100 painters' on-the-spot demonstration.
7. 100 directors and actors visiting the Film and Television City.
8. The Tourist Commodity Exhibition Sale.
9. National Elders' Painting and Calligraphy Exhibition.
10. The closing ceremony of the Farmer Tourism Festival.

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