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중국 Zhangjiakou 张家口: A Fusion of History and Reality  
Hebei, China  
 
Located at a gate in the Great Wall of China, Zhangjiakou (zhāng jiā kǒu 张家口) has historically been a communications and commercial link between Beijing, Shanxi (shān xī 山西) and Inner Mongolia (nèi měng gǔ 内蒙古). Zhangjiakou has unique topography. It is located at the juncture of the Hengshan Mountain (héng shān 恒山), Taihang Mountains (tài háng shān 太行山) and Yan Mountains (yān shān 燕山). The Sanggan River (sāng gàn hé 桑干河) flows through the whole area. The city slopes downwards from the northwest to southeast. Energy is the foundation of Zhangjiakou's industry economy. The Zhangjiakou General Power Plant (zhāng jiā kǒu fā diàn zǒng chǎng 张家口发电总厂), with an installed capacity of 2.88 million KWh, is one of the largest thermal power plants in north China. 

Zhangjiakou is a time-honored city north of the Great Wall inhabited by many ethnic minorities. In the Spring and Autumn Period (chūn qiū shí qī 春秋时期: 770 BC-476 BC), its north part was inhabited by the Huns (xiōng nú 匈奴), while the south part was the territory of the Yan Kingdom (yān guó 燕国). It had been divided into two shires in Sui Dynasty (suí cháo 隋朝: 581-618) and has brought into the domain of the central regime of China. Zhangjiakou was long known as Kalgan (kā lā gàn 喀拉干) to much of the world. The name comes from the Mongolian word for “barrier”, which was an apt description of this key city's importance to Qing Dynasty (qīng cháo 清朝: 1644-1911).



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