The geopark is located in the precinct of Xi’an city, Shaanxi Province. It covers an area of 1074.85 km2, in which the Qinling orogenic belt, the Quaternary geological heritages, geomorphological sites and the relics of palaeoanthropology are the major attractions. The geopark consists of five specific and mutually related parks. They are the Cuihuashan collapse-slide Park, the Lishan rift-horst Park, the Bingjingding ductile-shear zone and structural migmatite Park, the Yushan Park with island-arc granite peaks and ridges, the South Taibai Park with the collisional suture of plates and the Quaternary glacier.
Situated in the major portion of the collision juncture between the south and the north plates of China, the geopark forms a natural boundary dividing the China’s territory into the south and the north with different natural geology, geography, ecology, climate and environment, and is regarded as the “Natural Zoo in China” and the “Natural arboretum in Asia”.
Qinling Zhongnanshan Geopark is validated to join in GGN by UNESCO in August 2009, and it is the first Global Geopark in the northwest area.
Location and Transportation
The Qinling zhongnanshan Geopark of China is located in the southern precinct of Xi’an city, Shaanxi Province, approximately 25km to the center of the city town. It covers an area of 1,074.85 square kilometers.
There is a complete transportation system in the Geopark that comprises the expressway from Baotou (Inner Mongolia) to Maoming (Guangdong Province), and the one from Beijing to Kunming (Yunnan Province), national highway No.312, 108 and 210, provincial road 107 and tourist roads along hills which connect the 5 park areas of the geopark together.
Climate, Hydrology and Water Source
Qinling zhongnanshan Global Geopark has a warmly sub humid monsoon climate with clear distinction in four seasons, and 226 days of frost-free period, averaged 0.4℃ in January, 26.6℃ in July and 13.3℃ in a year round. Annual precipitation in the area averages 613.7mm and average humidity 69.6％. Climate in the mountainous terrain has showed an evident vertical donation, 100m risen to 0.6℃ fallen.
The XQG is abundant in water resources of 40×108m3, and it is 51% of the central of Shaanxi plain. There are 28 rivers including the Heihe River, the Laohe River, the Fenghe River etc. and 30 water reservoirs in the geopark.
Ecological Environment and Biodiversity
The southern of zhongnanshan is north subtropical zone humid region, and the north is warm temperature semi-humid region. Besides, the northern slope is a mixed area of coniferous forest, broadleaf and deciduous broadleaf forest of warm temperature zone, the north boundary of evergreen broadleaf trees and subtropical plants in China, a conjunct area of northern China, central China, Tanggute and Hengduan Mountain. Floras and faunas are transitional, mixed and varied in this area. The vertically biological zoning in integrity makes the area an important biological gene base. The area is also important for a number of rare animals, such as panda, golden monkey, Qinlingtakin, crested ibis etc, and rare plants such as kingdonia uniflora etc.
The particular geological backgrounds formed the highest mountain peak in the east of China, and the rich Weihe basin.
The Xi’an Qinling Geopark presents the remains of the Lantian Homo erectus, Shangyu Old Road (about 600 km form Shangzhou to Henan Province), the Ziwu Plank Road (about 330 km from Chang’an District to Xixiang County), temples of different religions, gardens of Zhou (dated 1122-221B.C), Qin(221-206B.C.), Han(206B.C.-220A.D.) and Tang (618A.D.-907A.D.) dynasties and the famous Lantian jade in ancient times.