China has seen two more sites added to the UNESCO Global Geopark List – Yimeng Mountain in East China’s Shandong province and Jiuhua Mountain in East China’s Anhui province – according to UNESCO’s official website on Wednesday. The Yimeng Mountain Geopark site is home to one of Asia’s largest kimberlite-type diamond mines, where the first primary diamonds were discovered in China. The landscape is dotted with castle-like land formations as well as multiple cultural heritage sites. These include the Xialou Pavilion that Confucius is believed to have once visited, the 1,500-year-old Marshal Tree, the Menglianggu Battle Monument, and several renowned temples, according to the introduction released on the UNESCO website. Jiuhua Mountain, which translates into “Nine Glorious Mountains”, is home to sacred Buddhist temples. Beyond the religious, historical and cultural significance, these mountains also provide a major source of fresh water that feeds the Yangtze River system. Unique and favorable geological conditions have contributed to the flourishing of the region’s biodiversity and cultural traditions, the introduction showed. With this year’s additions, the number of sites in the UNESCO Global Geopark Network, which covers 41 countries, has reached 147, of which 39 are in China.
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