Shanxi Province–More than Polluted Linfen

Linfen, China is indeed one of the most polluted cities in the world as stated in my post on April Fools Day. That isn’t the joke. The mask give-a-way is, however, even though it’s not uncommon for someone to wear a face mask to cut down on pollutants, particularly when riding a motorcycle.

What is also true is that Linfen is in Shanxi Province and the province is worth an extensive visit. One reason to make the trip is because of the history that’s found there. In the province’s Wuzhou Mountains are the Yugang Grottos and the 51,000 statues that were carved in their niches beginning in 453. Several of them are Chinese style Buddha images, but Greek and Indian influences are present as well.

The province also has the ancient city of Pingyou and the tallest wooden pagoda in China. Besides the cultural and historic treasures, the natural scenery includes waterfalls and mountains, totally opposite to what one might expect when considering that one of China’s most polluted cities shares this same corner of the earth.