Located in Hunan province, the ancient town of Furong (芙蓉镇), which translates to ‘hibiscus,’ is best known for being built atop a 60-meter-high waterfall.
Furong is over 2,000 years old and famous for its scenery and classic Chinese architecture.
The buildings were built on the cliffside to make the town easier to defend.
It’s now part of the Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture. The majority of its population identifies as part of the Tujia ethnic minority group.
Originally called Wangcun in modern times, the town was renamed in 2007 in honor of Hibiscus Town (1986), a famous film about the Cultural Revolution set in the town.
Because of its long history, the town is reminiscent of the dreamy settings of wuxia books and films.
Wuxia is a Chinese genre centered around martial arts heroes, evident in films like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000) and the Kung Fu Panda franchise. Most often, wuxia is set in ancient or pre-modern China.
Furong has even been compared to Rivendell, the peaceful elven city from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings.
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