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Tianya Haijiao

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  • Sanya Tianya Haijiao
    Sanya Tianya Haijiao
  • The Trumpet Shells
    The Trumpet Shells
  • The Huge Rocks, Tianya Haijiao
    The Huge Rocks, Tianya Haijiao
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Tianya Haijiao is about 23 km (14.3 miles) from downtown Sanya at the foot of Mount Maling, Tianya Town. Along with the mountain, it is famous for its tropical beaches and spectacular stones with carved characters.

Tianya Haijiao is also referred to as 'Edge of the Sky and Rim of the Sea'. In ancient China people believed that the sky was round and the Earth was square. Since Tianya Haijiao was located at the southernmost tip of China, it was considered the end of the world. At that time it was a desolate and barren place-so unpleasant that some officials guilty of criminal behavior were sent there as punishment.

There is a legend regarding the stones and their inscriptions. It is said that a young couple once came here to commit suicide because their families had been feuding and did not approve of their marriage. So they jumped into the sea and turned into two huge stones watching each other forever. In order to memorialize them, the local people carved 'Tianya' (edge of the sky) and 'Haijiao' (rim of the sea) on each of the stones - even if they went to the edge of the sky and the rim of the sea, they would never be separated. Thereafter, many young couple use the term 'Tianya Haijiao' to describe their eternal love.

In reality, the carved characters date back to the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911) when the Emperor Kangxi decided to survey and map the entire country. The officials in charge of this project determined that Tianya Haijiao was at the southernmost point of the country, so they carved four characters, 'Hai Pan Nan Tian' (the sea accompanies the sky) on a large stone. Later, a local official carved 'Tianya' on another stone nearby. In 1938, an army commander etched 'Haijiao' on a stone opposite the 'Tianya' stone. There is another nearby that is pillar-shaped and about seven meters high. It's inscription 'Nan Tian Yi Zhu' refers to the columns at the southern point of the sky.

Not far from Tianya Haijiao is a small island containing two huge pointed rocks standing crosswise. One rock is inscribed with the character 'ri' (the sun) and the other is inscribed with 'yue' (the moon). The Sun and Moon Stones lean against each other appearing like an indivisible couple. It's said that couples visiting here will have a very happy married life.

Besides the carved stones, Tianya Haijiao is famous for its original, natural landscapes such as the Li Minority Style Garden displaying the colorful Li Minority culture, and the Sculpture Garden of Historical Celebrities highlighting some historical celebrities and their contributions to Hainan Island.

Modern Tianya Haijiao has become an attractive tourist destination thanks to continuous construction and development. Visitors can use electric power carts to get around and enjoy sightseeing on a submarine. There are many entertainment options ranging from concerts to performing elephants. Two major annual events that draw a lot of tourists are the Tianya Haijiao International Wedding Festival and the New Silk Road Model Competition, a combination of fashion show and beauty contest. 

 Entrance Fee: CNY 95 

 Opening Hours: 07:00 - 19:00 

 Best Time to Visit: Nov. to Mar.

  Bus Routes:
1.Take Bus No.2 or 4 from Sanya to the last stop, and then take the Taihe Tourism Special Bus to Tianya Haijiao (CNY 5 per person).
2. Any bus in Sanya with a sign of 'Tianya' or 'Nanshan' in the town will take you to Tianya Haijiao (CNY 3 - 4). 
 By Taxi: 
Take a taxi from Sanya to Tianyai Haijiao (CNY 25 - 30), or rent a car (CNY 150).
In the Scenic Area: There are electric power cart in the scenic area for visitors' convenience, which is CNY15 for a round trip. 

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