Zhifu Island

From Academic Kids

Zhifu Island (芝罘島 Pinyin: Zhīf dǎo, Wade-Giles: Chih-fu tao), or North Island (北島 Běi dǎo, Pei tao), is an islet with historical significance in Shandong, China. The name of the islet -- Chefoo -- was generalized to mean the entire Yantai region in older western literature.

  • Area: 11.5 km
  • Coast line: 22.5 km
  • Average temperature: 11.40-13.50C

Administratively, Zhifu Island is a part of Dtuǎn Village (大疃村), Xingfu Sub-district, Zhifu District, Yantai City, Shandong Province. Dtuǎn has a part on the mainland, where the offices and most residents are.



Located in Bohai Sea, the island is 4 km from Downtown Zhifu and is 10 km x 1 km. Part of Public Road No. 26 connects the western end of the island and the north part of the mainland peninsula. Originally, the island was disconnected from the mainland, but for a period of millennium of years, the sand and soil in the ocean floor built up a 600-metre wide pathway. Thus the island is called the "Mainland-connecting Island" in Chinese (陸連島); it could even be considered a small peninsula.

The island's largest mountain is Laoye Mountain (老爺山 Lǎoy Shān) at 294.1m. The Old Lady Stone (婆婆石 Pp Sh) is on a cliff, at 43.49 metres above sea level, named because of its resemblance to a woman hugging the ocean waves. The southern part of the island is forested.


Archeological exhibitions discovered over 200 artifacts, including stone axes, and short axes (錛 : Bēn), pottery fragments, bone needles, and bone hairpin. These and C-14 dating indicated that the island has been settled since the Neolithic period.

People were buried here during the Zhou Dynasty, including Lord Kang of Qi State (齊康公), who died on the island. The ruins of the cemetery still exist today. Lord Yang Temple (陽主廟 Yngzhǔ Mio) was built during the early Zhou Dynasty by the State of Q (齊) to worship Lord Yang, the fifth deity of the Eight Divine Generals (八神將).

Because of a legend of a Mountain of Immortality, Qin Shi Huang visited the island three times looking for the elixir. He left a couple of stone inscriptions still visible today:

  • During his second visit in 218 BC, he left the inscription: "Arrived at Fu, and carved the stone" (登之罘,刻石).
  • The last time (210 BC), "Came to Fu, saw enormous stone, and shot one fish" (至之罘,見巨石,射殺一魚).

Today, there are places like Shihuang Way (始皇道 Shihuang Dao), and Fish-shooting Tower (射魚台 Sheyu Tai) named after the emperor. Having failed to discover the elixir, he sent a Xu Fu (徐福) of Mainland Yantai, to sail away and find the Pill of Immortality with thousands of men and women.

After performing a ceremony in the Yangzhu Temple, Emperor Wudi of Han Dynasty also left an inscription in 94 BC: "Arrived at Zhifu, which floats on Great Ocean. Mountains call out 'Ten thousand years!" (登芝罘,浮大海,山稱萬歲).

Now, the island is mainly a tourist attraction, although clams and abalones can be fished here in abundance.


Possibilities include:

  1. "A Barrier in the Shape of a Magical Plant"
    • Zhi is a magical and powerful plant, which the island's shape resembles
    • Fu a barrier of ocean
  2. A magical mountain name (significance unknown)
    • From Qin Dynasty's Zhifu (之罘), officially changed to the present character in late Qing Dynasty.


The modern Zhifu District is named after the island, not vice versa.

External links

  • Official page (http://www.china-zhifu.com/travel/jd-1.htm) from Zhifu District
  • An aerial photo (http://big5.huaxia.com/ShenZhouLiaoWang/ChengShiDH/YanTai/YouLanJingGuan/GBK/31621.html)

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