Hubei is a central province of the People's Republic of China. It is situated in the middle reaches of the Yangtze River and to the north of Dongting Lake. So it is called Hubei. Covering a total area of 180,590 square kilometers, it is surrounded by Henan Province to the north, Jiangxi and Hunan to the south, Anhui to the east, Sichuan to the west and Shanxi to the northwest.
The central south is the Yangtze and Hanjiang Plain which is a depositional plain formed by the joint force of Yangtze River and its biggest branch current Hanjiang, flat and rich, and is called the land flowing with milk and honey.Yangtze river runs 1,601 kilometers in Hubei from the west to the east, passes the three gorges, enters the Jianghan Plain at Nanjingguan. Hanjiang runs from northwest to southeast and flows into Yangtze in Wuhan.
Hubei has been said to be one of the originating places of the Chinese people. Today many minority ethnic groups live in this area including: Miao, Tujia, Dong and some others. The population of the minority people is 2,579,700, and takes up 4.34% of the total population. The majority of the population of minority people is Tujia, Miao, Hui, and Dong, among which Tujia has a population of 2,000,000, taking up 88% of the minority people.
Hubei is one of the industry and agriculture production bases in China, and light and heavy industries and agriculture contribute equally to the total output value of its industry and agriculture, and they are close to balance.
Since the 1950s, Hubei has become the major area to develop industry in China. With its abundant mineral resources, many large-scale mineral bases are built like Wuhan Iron and Steel Complex, Daye iron works, Jinxiang phosphorite plant, and Yingcheng gypsum plant etc. When it turned to the 1980s, Huibei has developed a comprehensive system of industry in which steel, machine, electric engineering, cotton, and food production are the major part. It is one of important industry bases in China.
Agriculture takes farming as its major way of producing. Crops production plays an important role in Hubei agriculture, and Hubei is also one of the important bases in China to produce crops, cotton, oil and pigs.
Hanju opera and Chuju Opera are populous in the whole province. Hanju opera has a history of 300 years and develops a sound system of characters, and it is good at expressing emotions. Chuju opera has a simple language and shares the local flavor. Rich in ways of singing, Huangmei's Caicha opera took its form about at the end of Ming dynasty and the beginning of Qing dynasty. Other verbal arts include Hubei Dagu, Hubei Pingshu, Hantan Xiaoqu, Hanchuan Shanshu, etc. Wuhan's acrobatics enjoy a fame home and abroad.
There are 1193 rivers in Hubei, and their total length reaches nearly 350,000 kilometers. Lots of small and big lakes range in the dispositional plain of Yangtze and Hanjiang, and form Yangtze and Hanjiang Lakes. Hubei is praised as the province of thousands of lakes because it is one of freshwater lakes densely lying areas in China, and Hong Lake is the biggest lake in the province.
Hubei has 6 national well-known scenic spots like Yangtze Three Gorges, etc., 13 national-level forest parks with Shengnongjia being one of them, and 3 national nature reservations. Shennongjia has been included in the Protection Plan for Man and Nature by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and Wudang Mountain and Mingxian Tomb have been designated as World Culture Heritage sites. Yangtze Three Gorges, Yellow Crane Tower and Gezhouba are praised as 40 best tourism spots of China.
Hubei possesses 5 national famous cultural and historical cities, boasts 20 relic sites under national protection, 365 relic sites under provincial protection. In addition, Hubei owns 5 sites of city of Chu, 73 cultural ruins of Chu and 140 historical remains of Three Kingdoms.