Sanya Sunlight on South China Sea

Chris Millar

London, United Kingdom

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Sanya (simplified Chinese: 三亚; traditional Chinese: 三亞; pinyin: Sānyà) is the second southernmost Chinese city (after Sansha City) and one of the three prefecture-level cities in Hainan Province. According to the 2010 Census, the population of Sanya is of 685,408 inhabitants, living in an area of 1,919.58 square kilometres (741.15 sq mi). The city is renowned for its tropical climate and has emerged as a popular tourist destination.

The ancient name of Sanya is Yazhou (Chinese Postal Map Romanisation: Ngaichiu; Chinese: 崖州), which literally means “cliff prefecture”. Its history can be dated back to the Qin Dynasty (221 – 206 BC). Since then, it has always been within the territory of the Chinese dynasties. Due to its remoteness, Sanya is sometimes called Tianya Haijiao (天涯海角), meaning “the end of the sky and ocean”. Some prime ministers in various dynasties were exiled there and the Buddhist monk Jianzhen accidentally sailed there and used the place as one of his harbors for his missionary journey to Japan.

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