Combining fresh sea air and dashing good looks, Qīngdǎo (青岛) – the name means 'Green Island' – is a rare modern city that has managed to preserve some of its past while angling a dazzling modern face to the future. Its blend of concession-era and modern architecture puts China’s standard white-tile and blue-glass developments to shame. The winding cobbled streets, historic German architecture and red-capped hillside villas are captivating and there's so much to enjoy in the city’s diverse food scene, headlined by the ubiquitous home town beer Tsingtao. Meanwhile, the seaside aspect keeps the town cooler than the inland swelter zones during summer, and slightly warmer in winter.
Qingdao Geography, Demographics, Economy, & Tourism
As of November 16th 2015, Qingdao implemented a 72-hour visa-free transit policy to facilitate business and tourism. Visitors can enjoy a 72 hour visa-free stay while taking an international transfer via Liuting International Airport.
Also known as the Switzerland of the east, Qingdao lies on the Shandong Peninsula in Jiaozhou Bay. It has eight urban districts (Shinan, Laoshan, Huangdao, Shibei, Licang, Hongdao, Jimo, and Jiaozhou) and jurisdiction over four county level cities (Jimo, Jiaozhou, Pingdu, Laixi). Facing the Yellow Sea, Qingdao occupies 10,645 square kilometers of land with a population of more than 8.7 million.
As one of China’s most important independent coastal regions with state planning and budgeting powers, the city has experienced rapid growth over the last decade. Qingdao’s Port is the second-largest in China. It handles more imports of natural rubber, cotton and crude oil than any other port in the country.
The Qingdao Economic & Technological Development Zone (QETDZ), Sino-German High-Tech Ecology Park, and three Central Business Districts combine to form Shandong’s premier international business Mecca and Blue Silicon Valley. Qingdao’s major industries include trade, light industry, home appliances, petrochemicals, vehicles, textile processing, food processing, machinery, pharmaceuticals, tourism and oceanography research.
Qingdao is well known for its European architecture, attractive coastal landscapes, and local folklore. Popular attractions include mystical Mount Lao, Badaguan, Tsingtao Brewery Museum, and Zhongshan Park. With its abundance of natural beauty, the year-round schedule of international events and seasonal tourist attractions make China’s Sailing City an ideal tourist destination for both domestic and international travelers