CHANGSHA, Oct. 7 (Xinhua) -- With improved environment, wetlands along the Yangtze River, China's longest, have become popular among tourists during the National Day holiday.
As of Saturday, the wetlands along the Yangtze in the city of Linxiang, central China's Hunan Province, have attracted 10,000 camping, sightseeing and bird-watching tourists, said Zhang Guoliang, a municipal cultural and tourism official.
Zhang attributed improved ecology and environment to the flourishing of wetland-based tourism, adding that the city has invested 40 million yuan (about 5.66 million U.S. dollars) in wetlands restoration and afforestation programs.
"It is a wonderful experience to breathe fresh air, feel the charm of the nature with no crowding here," said Li Jin, a resident from the city of Yueyang, also in Hunan. Li took her family to a wetland site to relax themselves during the holiday.
The Yangtze has a 163-km stretch flowing through Hunan. The province has stepped up efforts in recent years to treat the environment in areas along the mighty river via closing polluters and carrying out afforestation programs.
As ecological environment improves, Dongting Lake in Hunan, which is connected to the Yangtze, has seen more waterfowl, whose number hit 240,000 in winter last year, up 6.3 percent year on year.