Sanya in Hainan Province: From a small fishery town to international tourist destination

By Mohamed Osman Abdi / Somali National News Agency / Updated: 2019-04-03,15:02

Visun Rotal Yacht Club for tourists in Sanya Island, March 25, 2019(SONNA / Mohamed Osman)

Beijing(SONNA)- To know about the reality of given ideas and stories about significant location or town like Sanya, In Hainan Province in Southern China, requires from you to put your feet into it and see the reality on ground as seeing is believing  and this is what I did a week from March, 2019.

Left from Beijing being the weather too cold and went to Sanya taking a flight that lasted about 4hrs together with 50 journalists mostly from Africa and as well as Asia Pacific those were in Beijing for long term of media training program. I immediately felt weather like in my country; saw the blue sky, coconut trees and beaches like those in the Somali capital, Mogadishu.

Received warm welcome from both Chinese officials in Sanya in Haianan province, and locals and we were given all about Sanya town that enjoys a unique geographical location, tropical climate conditions and great cultural heritage.

Then we were led to pay visit to key tourist destinations in and outside the town such as: Phoenix International Cruise Terminal, Royal Yacht Club,Sanya Paddy Field National Park, Sanya International Duty Free Shopping Center, Zhongliao village, Xinglong Coffee Valley, Binglanggu Hainan Li and Miao Cultural Heritage Park, Hainan Tropical Ocean University and many other areas including five-star hotels which also took our attention.

Zhao Yiwen, General Economist of Sanya Development Reform Commission said that Hainan was approved as province in 1988 by the central Government, telling Hainan is the youngest tropical island province, but largest special economic zone and only provincial-level international tourist island.

“It covers a land area of 35,400 km2 and has a total population of 9.26 million composed of Li, Miao and Hui ethnically, the average temperature ranging from 23 to 26 degrees. Haianan tourism has made great development and became the mainstay of the national economic industry”, He said.

He stated that 59 countries can visit the town without visas and it is free from population, adding it plans to a phased approach to achieve its 2030 goal of powering all cars in the province with clean energy.

But Sanya, the famous tropical seaside tourist city covers a land of 1918.37 square kilometers and sea area of 3,500 square kilometers. It is home for 19 harbors and 10 major islets. The city is composed of two districts and six towns with a total population of 581,400 according to the officials.

Kevin, a tourist guide told me that people in Sanya had longevity, live over 100 ages and he says people don’t eat pork, but vegetables, seafood, telling the city is known to be ‘Love of island’ and other beautiful names.

“Hainan belongs to China, Sanya belongs to the world and enjoy every minute here in Sanya”, Kevin told us in a bus heading to Sanya Government where we had an introduction and promotion meeting there.

He told me in an interview that more than 10’000 Muslim population dwelling into two villages in Sanya, but there are no other foreigners living there except tourists and less than 100 foreign students, 43 of them from African countries at Hainan Tropical Ocean University where my delegation from China-Africa Press Center concluded their tour.

“The University was founded in 1944, some universities and institutions in the world are partners with us, we still want to have partnership agreement with universities in your countries, we give priority to Africa because China and Africa share friendly relations”, said Niu Jian, Dean of the School of International Education at the meeting with university board.

He said that 91 foreign students including 43 from African countries study there; reminding us that the scholar ship opportunities are open now and applications can be submitted to them.

Li and Miao cultural heritage performance

I attended to watch very interesting cultural heritage performance of Li and Miao people showing love and praying for good harvest on the same day we were in the university and I was told the theater stage there was also one of film production zones in the country.

Li and Miao cultural heritage performance, March 28, 2019(SONNA, Mohamed Osman)

Historically, Sanya was a small fishery town, but now turned into international tourist destination. I was told that 22.48 million tourists visited Sanya only in 2018.

Li and Miao cultural heritage performance

The Chinese Government played a very important role to push the economic development of Sanya in Hainan province as whole in China.

To my surprise, some of my team was taking the largest number of pictures including countless of selfie ones in every spot of the attractive tourist locations and some others shared with me that they enjoyed the sunshine, swimming pools, food at the hotels, and beach during their journey in Sanya as whole.

Sanya Introduction and Promotion meeting on March 25,2019 (SONNA/ Mohamed Osman)

People in Sanya from all walks of life are dedicated to respect, guide guests and give better service with hearty touching welcome and I together with African Journalists left there while still glimpsing Sanya back.

The author Mohamed Osman Abdi is the Chief Editor of the English Version of Somali National News Agency. From March 24 to 29, 2019,  he was invited to attend the large scale interview activities  with mainstream media from 49 countries in Asia and Africa in Hainan Free Trade Zone and free trade port, and published this article on the website of Somali National News Agency on April, 2, 2019. 




















作者比拉尔·艾哈迈德·萨博利(Mohamed Osman Abdi)是索马里国家新闻通讯社(Somali National News Agency)英文版主编,于3月24日至29日受邀参加亚非49国主流媒体走进海南自贸区自贸港大型采访活动,之后在索马里国家新闻通讯社网站发表该文。




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