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Red Flag Canal Scenic Area

The information contained here are subject to change. Chinese History Digest is not responsible or liable if any changes should occur.

Opening Hours

Winter: 8am - 6pm
Summer: 8am - 9pm

Entrance Ticket Prices

100 yuan
50 yuan for students, children and the elderly
includes Red Flag Canal Museum, Youth Cave Scenic Spot and Luosi Deep Pool

Tigers Mouth Cliff section of the Red Flag Canal Scenic AreaTigers Mouth Cliff section of the Red Flag Canal Scenic AreaThe Red Flag Canal Scenic Area (a.k.a. Hongqiqu Scenic Area) is the most spectacular section of the Red Flag Canal. It is located about 20km north of the city of Linzhou at the northern tip of Henan province. This part of China is quite remote and not as conveniently accessible as most other tourist sites in China. Therefore, the Red Flag Canal Tourism Area is generally not a crowded place to visit apart from a few tour groups that occasionally rush through. Most independent travelers come here on a day trip by bus from Anyang which lies about 80km away to the southeast.

Integrating a visit of the Linzhou area with a visit of Anyang and its Yin Ruins certainly makes sense. However, there are a few other sites worth seeing near the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area that you will find listed on this website. Staying for one or even two nights in the Linzhou area might therefore be a better alternative for travelers that want to see all the sights without rushing.

workers dangling from ropes during the construction phase of the Red Flag Canal in 1960workers dangling from ropes during the construction phase of the Red Flag Canal in 1960During the Great Leap Forward era of the People's Republic of China in the 1960s, many large labour projects were undertaken that required the mass mobilization of workers. The building of the Red Flag Canal was one such project that was initiated in order to provide irrigation for the fields of the Linzhou district. That area often suffered from droughts prior to the building of the canal. Construction of the canal that diverts water from the Zhuozhang River was started on the 10th of February 1960 with an initial workforce of 100,000 people. However, the workforce was soon reduced to 30,000 due to logistical difficulties. Work on the main channel was completed on the 5th of April 1965 and the three main trunk canals were finished the following year.

aerial view of the Youth Cave section of the Red Flag Canalaerial view of the Youth Cave section of the Red Flag CanalAll the backbreaking work in carving the 71-kilometer-long main channel (which is 4.3 meters deep and 8 meters wide) out of the rocky ground at the side of the Taihang mountains was done manually. No heavy machinery was used! Laborers instead worked with dynamite, long steel chisels and heavy sledge hammers. When working with dynamite, brave workers lit the fuses manually while dangling from ropes at the sides of the cliff. Before the dynamite exploded with little time to spare, those intrepid souls were then quickly hoisted to safety by their colleagues pulling on the ropes. All the debris had to be carried away by hand in baskets hanging on shoulder poles.

In total, the Red Flag Canal measures 1500km in length. That includes all its branches that distribute the water from the main channel throughout the region over 36,000 hectares of land. To make this comprehensive irrigation system a reality, 134 tunnels and 150 aqueducts had to be built. When work on the canal was completed, it provided a stable water supply for about 567,000 people. Even though it was initially only scheduled to be used for 20 years, it is still in use today. A committee in Linzhou is currently working on an application to enlist the main channel of the Red Flag Canal on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

At the site of the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area, visitors will see the main channel of the canal flow around a cliff, through tunnels and along the rocky side of the Taihang mountains. This walkable section of the canal starts near the parking lot and continues on for a few short kilometers to the Youth Cave. It is generally not a very arduous walk but a good basic level of fitness and mobility is nevertheless required. The 623-meter-long Youth Cave was one of the main work projects of the Red Flag Canal. The cave is actually a tunnel through which the canal's water continues to flow subterraneously after disappearing from view. It was created through the manual labor of 300 young people that were specifically assigned to this task during the canal's construction phase. In 1973, the Chinese communist leader Guo Moruo inscribed the name Youth Cave above the cave entrance.

The Red Flag Canal Museum and Luosi Deep Pool that are included in the 100 yuan ticket price of the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area are located at different spots in the vicinity (so you will need to take a taxi to get there). The Red Flag Canal Museum was built in the late 1960s at the spot where the canal's main channel is split into three trunk channels. The different sections of the museum tell the story of the canal's construction in a personal way by using the real stories of workers that exemplified the spirit of these times. Old black-and-white videos and 210 historic photographs vividly illustrate the hardships and heroism of the canal builders. The Luosi Deep Pool is located at another spot near the canal where a semi-circular waterfall has formed a deep pool at its bottom.

view of the entrance to the Youth Cave at the side of the Taihang mountainsview of the entrance to the Youth Cave at the side of the Taihang mountains

How to get to the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area near Linzhou?

Address: Red Flag Canal Scenic Area, 225 Taihang Road, Linzhou City, Henan province, China
Tel.Nr.: +86 372 604 0080 or 372 681 1466 or 372 604 8003 or 372 610 6252
Air: Zhengzhou Xinzheng International Airport (CGO)
Train: Anyang Railway Station, Anyang East Railway Station
Bus: You can take a bus to the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area from the Linzhou Bus Station (or hire a taxi for the 20km ride). To get to Linzhou, take a bus from Anyang.

Recommended Hotel near the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area

Since the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area is located in a fairly remote area of the countryside, there are no hotels in its immediate vicinity. Most of the tourists that visit this area on more than just a day trip stay in Linzhou which is the nearest city. The 4-star hotel that is introduced first in detail below is the best hotel in that small city. The second hotel further down the page is the best hotel in the much bigger city of Anyang which lies about an hour's drive to the east of Linzhou. The provided information was thoroughly researched from various hotel booking websites. Chinese History Digest is not responsible if any information regarding the provided services and amenities might have changed.

Zhongzhou Yufeng International Hotel

outside view of the Zhongzhou Yufeng International Hotel in LinzhouThe 4-star Zhongzhou Yufeng International Hotel was opened in 2008 and renovated in 2019. It is located close to the city center of Linzhou (1.69km away) and not too far from a number of other places of interest in that small city such as the Linzhou People's Park (3km), the Linzhoushi Museum (2.93km) and the city's bus station (5km). Since most independent travellers that come to Linzhou with the intent to see the Red Flag Canal nearby come by car, the hotel provides free parking. A car is indeed needed to reach the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area from this hotel but it is also possible (and not too expensive) to negotiate an all-day rate with a taxi driver in Linzhou and reach the various sites related to the Red Flag Canal in this way. Since there is no airport transfer between the hotel and the nearest airport in Zhengzhou, travellers without a car are advised to reach Linzhou by bus from Anyang. The much bigger city of Anyang that lies to the east of Linzhou can be conveniently reached by high-speed train from Zhengzhou within less than an hour (high-speed trains from Zhengzhou East Railway Station to Anyang East Railway Station). Travel times by high-speed train from Luoyang (around 1.5 hours) or Xi'an (between 2.5 and 3.5 hours) are still reasonable as well.

All rooms of the Zhongzhou Yufeng International Hotel have free access to the internet through Wi-Fi. In addition to standard rooms, the hotel also has some suites available. Non-smoking rooms can be requested. Free Chinese-style breakfast is provided (25 yuan for extra breakfast) and there is also a restaurant and a bar on the premises of the hotel. Laundry service and luggage storage are available. For exercise and relaxation, guests have access to a fitness center and a spa. However, there is no swimming pool at the hotel.

19.0 miles away

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Wanda Realm Anyang

outside view of the Wanda Realm AnyangThe Wanda Realm Anyang is the only 5-star hotel in the small city of Anyang. It is located to the south of the city center there, only 290 meters away from the Anyang Museum which is another must-see when visiting that city. At an approximate distance of 2.7km, the National Museum of Chinese Writing is also relatively close to this hotel. Another recommended sight that tourists could reach by taxi within a short time from this hotel are the Youli Castle Ruins. Taking a taxi is also the best way to get to the Yin Xu site and Yin Ruins Museum. Free parking is available outside the Wanda Realm Anyang should you decide to rent a car. However, tourists could also join an organized tour group excursion to reach the Red Flag Canal Scenic Area near Linzhou. Another option would be to take the regular line bus to Linzhou and then hire a taxi there.

All rooms of the Wanda Realm Anyang are air-conditioned and equipped with a flatscreen TV, refrigerator and minibar. It is important to note that smoking is not permitted in the rooms and public areas of this hotel. The rooms have blackout curtains and free bottled water is provided for the guests. Free Wi-Fi is available in all rooms as well as at the public areas of the hotel. Free buffet breakfast is generally included in the room rate (104 yuan if not included). Laundry service (incl. dry cleaning) and luggage storage are available. The hotel has a restaurant and a bar that cater to the culinary needs of its guests. For exercise, guests have access to a swimming pool (indoor and outdoor) and a fitness center.

41.8 miles away

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